Didn’t want to do it, but it saves time and money—MENU PLANNING!
Menu planning has had three sanity and money saving effects in the typical household: no more twenty-minute “what do you want for dinner” discussions, one trip (not two or three trips) to the grocery store every week, and a 20% drop in the monthly grocery spending. Creating a family menu is something that will make life so much easier. Once you have your menu favorites (think 10 breakfasts, 10 lunches and 15 dinners) then move on to meal planning.
I plan one week at a time, but how often to plan is really up to you. Here are some of my tips for meal planning. It really is worth the effort.
Get Input From The Rest Of The Family –Get some ideas from the rest of the family.
Check The Sale Ads – Coordinate your planning with what is on sale that weekJ you can even shop for two weeks. Use double coupons on top of it and save more cash! Some stores do price matching if you bring in the flier from another store! YUP! ASLO, stock up on in season items and on sale items…plan around that as well!
Keep A Meal and Ingredients List –Before you sit down to make the week’s menu, take stock of cabinets and match what you need to use and what you have the most of to any meal and ingredient list.
Keep It Simple – Every night’s meal does not have to be an exciting and special event. You can do themes; Mexican night, Italian night, casserole night, breakfast night, etc.
Be Flexible– It’s Tuesday night and spaghetti is on the menu. For whatever reason, you don’t think you can even stand to look at spaghetti, much less eat it. It’s ok to have a few backups. Keep a few frozen dinners or pizzas around for backupJ
Don’t Forget Your Lunch –When you plan the dinner menu for the week, also try to plan lunches. Leftovers are great lunches!