Meal Planning

I plan out our meals for the week.

I take one evening a week (2 hours after supper) to create a 7 day meal plan, collect needed recipes and make a shopping list.

Oh my, you might say!  An evening… is it worth it?

Yes! Yes! Yes!

  1. Meal planning saves you money.  You buy what you need.   Fewer random purchases.
  2. You use what you have.  Less waste.
  3. Less running to the store (or a neighbours) for that one ingredient you ‘forgot’ or didn’t have on your shelf
  4. Meal planning helps you eat wisely and with the best nutrition in mind for your  family.  Less out of the box or frozen dinners
  5. Meal planning helps meal prep be less stressful, rushed.  It becomes creative and thoughtful.
  6. Meal planning encourages variety.  One beef, two chicken dishes, one vegetarian night, Mexican fiesta and so on.  No repeats of ‘spaghetti again?’
  7. It encourages curious ‘palates’.  New flavours, new side dishes.  Try a few… hey if one out of five is a hit – you’ve acquired a new taste.

To make a plan, I use favourite meals, include side dishes, explore new ideas on the internet and ask Darling Daughter and Hubby if there is anything they crave.  I save the menus on the computer, until I have six weeks, then I reuse them.  To add variety, I change up two main meals we have done before and omit other ideas we didn’t enjoy or simply failed.

Here is an example of Meal Plan #1.

menu

As you can see:  green = good, yellow = modify, red = nope.

Good eats that we have prepared at home make the blog.

Not all recipes I plan and cook and take pictures of do.  For instance, we made a catfish recipe this week.  It sounded delish and I know we love catfish.  However upon eating it everyone agreed it was bland.  Adding spice is not necessarily the answer.  Fresh ingredients more often than a spice will make a meal increasingly appetizing.  So that recipe has been rejected and you will not be subjected to it.  Instead I’m off in search of a new catfish dish.

Plan ahead, look around at other healthy blogs, communicate with your family, stick to your shopping list and enjoy making meals.

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