Eh? Meal plan? What the what? Like I have time for that!
Oh, I promise you’ll make time for it after reading this! Making a meal plan is basically deciding all at one time what your meals will be for the next week, two weeks, month, year, whatever. Okay, not year, that’s ridiculous, but you get my point. Instead of deciding what’s for breakfast, lunch, or dinner on the fly, you’ll have a plan in place already. Yes! No pulled hair!
So what are the benefits of meal planning?
Like I mentioned, you won’t be deciding at the last minute what you’ll have, reducing the times you reach for those frozen meals or decide to heck with it, we’re going to McDonald’s. Grocery shopping will be less of a hassle because you can plan your meals around what’s already in your cupboards and you’ll know exactly what you need to pick up. It takes work to set up, but it’s worth it. So let’s get to it!
How to meal plan.
First things first, you’ll need a pen and paper or a note taking app on your phone or tablet. You can also make a list in your bullet journal. It doesn’t matter which you use as long as you use it.
- Gather up all the recipes your family enjoys in one place. Yeah, you can use Pinterest to find more recipes if you find that you don’t have that many (and you can check out my recipe board for some ideas). Make a list. You can get fancy and separate it into meats, vegetarian, whatever, if you want. Mine is a simple page in my bullet journal. Not fancy at all.
- Decide if you’ll plan breakfast, lunch, and dinner, or just dinner. Or lunch only. You get the picture. Decide what meals you’ll plan. I only plan dinner since we usually eat the same thing (oatmeal, cereal, or yogurt in case you’re wondering) for breakfast and leftovers for lunch (when we’re home for lunch).
- Plan your week or however long of meals (I recommend starting with a week so it’s not overwhelming and I go week by week). I made a simple PDF for you to print out to use. Scroll down to the end to enter your email to receive it.
- Using your plan, see what you need to get to make those meals. Make a list and go shop!
Are you ready to try a meal plan?
I’ve found it to be an amazingly helpful tool. I usually plan on having leftovers at least once that week and plan easy meals for days when I know we’ll be busy and I won’t have much time/energy. You can get as detailed as you need to or keep it simple. Whatever works for you. Ten minutes of planning Sunday night will save you headaches during the week. And we’re all about that, aren’t we? So again, I made a printable PDF for you to use to make a master list and plan your meals for a week. Enter your details below to get it. If you’ve done meal planning before, what did you use to plan it out? Paper and pen or an app on your phone? Leave a comment below and head over to the new Women in Charge Facebook group to join in the discussion!