I can’t tell you how many thoughts fill my head OTHER than food. It’s wonderful. Just getting it down on paper makes the food monster “step off” a bit.
The following are meal planning tips I live by…
Plan your food out at least a week in advance. Here’s how I get started. First, choose a dinner meal that you’ve been wanting to make or based around a food item that you currently have that needs to be used. The rest of the week will stem from that one meal’s ingredients. Hold the phone. Whaaat? Why do I do this? Simple. No food goes to waste before we can eat it. We save bumloads of dollars & it keeps my meals fairly simple.
Here’s one example… On Wednesday we’re scheduled to have hamburgers. I’ll end up having leftover ground beef. So instead of making hamburgers that we won’t be able to finish (or day I say freeze… gasp! burgers should always be fresh, friendlies) I’ll turn it into another meal! The next night is a pasta dish that involves ground beef. See? I’m using up my ingredients! Let’s even take it a step further… The burgers also have bacon on them. What’s a simple meal that’s delish & easy? Turkey avocado BLT sandwiches. Yep! The bacon is now officially almost gonzo! And just to make sure, we’ll be having pancakes over the weekend with… you guessed it! ba.con. Are you getting the drift?
When you go to the store and/or market, have your list written according to category & order in which you walk around the store. Yes, I know. It’s slightly riduculously OCD… but still. You’ll love me for this later. It makes your shopping experience a lot more efficient & enjoyable. Jeepers! I almost forgot. When you load your goods on the checkout belt, put all like items by each other on the belt (hang with me here, guys). When the bagger packs your goods, all like items will be in the same bag. That means, when you go home and unpack your groceries you’re not running around your kitchen!
When do most unhealthy food choices happen? When we’re unprepared & starvin! Yep… the guilty “I just didn’t have time, so that’s why I’m eating my 2nd drive-thru meal of the day” happens when we’re unprepared. Who is depending on us to prepare? Not only ourselves but our families. If we don’t prepare we’re not only affecting our own health but also those who aren’t old enough to make healthy food choices, our lil’ kidlets. And that’s kind of a big deal.
When we’re not planning, we’re either eating out or binge buying at the grocery store. You know what I mean… walking up and down the aisles, “Hmmm…that kinda looks good. We could have that sometime this week.” (or maybe sometime never!) That sometime rarely happens because we didn’t plan for it. That means the food will more than likely go to waste which is also wasted money.
By planning our meals this way we’re really getting the best of everything. We’re saving money, time, the daunting constant “what are we eating” thoughts, and ultimately our health.
It gets kinda fun playing house chef once you’re organized & prepared. I’m super excited for you!!
Want a cute little meal plan chart? You know I like to share…