While I love to grocery shop, I don’t love spending extra money at the grocery store. Finally, after 20 something years of marriage, I found something that works for me, and I’m hoping it will help you too. Too often I see blogs/videos that explain the meal planning process and things are way too organized…that’s unattainable for me. Would I love to have every single recipe that I own typed up and recorded on a microsoft word document in my computer? YES! Would I like to then push a few buttons to pick out my meals and have a generated grocery list pop up? YES! I guess I choose to spend my time a different way…..
Here is an Easy-Breezy way to plan your meals for the week; quickly and efficiently and evidently at a cost that doesn’t break the bank. Here’s what you’ll need…. a pen, some paper, and your calendar…
First, I check my pantry….are there things in there that I need to use or do you see parts of a meal that could be made with just a few other ingredients?? Here’s my pantry (yes, I did a little “facing” before the pic was taken)…..
Right away, I saw these….too many of these…. Uncle Ben’s Quick- Cook Wild Rice. I have a great soup recipe that I could make with that…..
I also saw this……pasta…..hmmm..we haven’t had spaghetti for awhile…I could use that…. (sorry for the blurry pic)
Next, go to your freezer….look in there. Is there anything you could use to make a meal???
I found this……
and these were possibilities too….
So, looking at these options, I saw that I could make…..
I then added a side dish to each meal …a side dish that I knew they would actually eat.
I pulled out my recipe binder and found the recipes….made a simple grocery list of the things I needed to buy. (Notice, I don’t have these perfectly organized and synced with the numbered aisle at the grocery store….make it EASY- use categories!)
I saved one night to try a new recipe (lemon pepper turkey breasts) from one of my favorite slow cooking books….
Then, I shopped, and brought home what I needed–plus a few other requests from the kids (Nut thins and Tyson chicken bites)
Seriously, the bill came to $67 !!! I was thrilled!! and I didn’t use any coupons and even bought some organic veggies!!
The last step is to look at your calendar, and decide which days are the craziest, then have the simplest meals on those days.
Note: If you have no options for meals after looking in your pantry and freezer, just write down 5 different meals that you know your family will eat, and go from there!! If you need a frozen pizza night, then by all means have it..just schedule it !
There you have it….my tips on making a meal plan!! Do you make a plan every week??