Menu Planning...what's that? Ha!
Updated: Mar 25, 2020
Do you envy or even laugh at those parents who say they menu plan every week and it's so easy?! Well, I hope this will help you. I love to cook and that helps, but I also have three kids (15,13 and 6) with busy schedules and I try to cook 6 nights a week. This can be challenging for sure, but when I menu plan and shop at the beginning of the week, my life seems to go more smoothly. I'm not rushing or worrying about what's for dinner and I know there is healthy food just waiting for my family. Here are the steps I follow and a sample menu to get you started.
Grab paper, pencil, weekly store ad (via app or paper), calendar
Write down the days of the week first
Check your calendar for nights you may need to do a fast meal and make note of that on corresponding days
Pull up the grocery store you visit most frequently and check the ads, sales and specials going on for the week. I like to start with the meats and build my weekly menu from there.
Write down the meals you will make next to each day
Start your list. On a second piece of paper write your list by starting with the meals on Sunday and adding all of the ingredients you need for those meals. Move onto Monday and so on.
Add digital coupons through your grocery store app or grab your paper coupons
Head to the store and stock up.
I like to have a leftover night at the end of the week. Usually Friday. But, that could be pizza or take out night too.
After you get into the routine, you will be able to plan meals that use similar ingredients so you are actually buying less. For example, cooking a flank steak one night and chopping up the leftovers for steak tacos a couple nights later.
Scroll down for sample weekly menu!