Sunday, July 29, 2012

Meal planning 101

This week I am going to take some time to fill you guys in on how we manage to maintain healthy at home eating, even with our busy schedules.
It is important to get a routine in your weekly schedule to help prevent stress. When you work all day do you want to come home and stress over what to make for dinner, wondering if you need to go to the grocery store, etc?
Mike and I started doing weekly meal plans two months ago and it’s no longer the “What do you want for dinner?” fight. Those of you who are in relationships, you have to know what I am talking about!
You know when HE opens the fridge, closes it, opens the pantry, closes it… 12 times and says “We have no food”.   Which ensues the “I don’t care what we eat.. what do you want.” for an hour before we are too hungry to make something and we end up going out for dinner.
The benefits of a meal plan are not just to stop those incessant fights but it also helps the budget. If you make the meal plan at the beginning of the week and do groceries to ensure you have the right ingredients to allow you to make those meals, trust me you can save so much money and reduce waste. We have saved $50 a week on groceries and with us also making sure to plan lunches, we are saving $30+ every week on going out for meals.
This is the template I use:

Yes, if you have a meal plan and the necessary ingredients he will make dinner, no questions asked!
These are some of our favorites over the last few months:
·         Spaghetti in garlic gravy with lemon marinated chicken and cherry tomatoes
·         Hawaiian grilled chicken with coconut rice
Some tips for when you are making your meal plan:
1.       Start with a week where the meals are all meals you have made before and have experience with so the transition is easier
2.       Try wherever possible to make meals for dinner that can be used as leftovers for lunch the next day
3.       When we make things like chili and pulled pork, we make large batches that can be frozen for nights you don’t want to lift a finger
4.       Just because you have a meal plan doesn’t mean you can’t go out for dinner. But, you should plan it ahead, so if you wanted to have a date night next weekend, you make sure not to plan a meal for that night but plan to go out for dinner.  
5.       Once you get comfortable, start adding one new recipe each week
Good luck with your meal plans, and remember be creative and have some fun!
If you have any other tips when making your meal plans, let us know.


  1. Awesome!!! Any tips on how to get mom to do this lol

  2. Check this out: