Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Menu Planning

I made this nifty little coupon/grocery list notebook last week.

  It's not perfect (construction wise, it worked GREAT at the grocery store though).

But it's getting close. I have tried finding a tutorial for one, but most of the ones I have seen don't quite have what I need. Simple being the most important thing...I just sorta winged this. An improved version may pop up in my Etsy ;)
So this brings me to menu planning.

With the school year already here for most of you, it's time to get out of the summer haze and start meal planning again!
I have always done some form of meal planning.

My mom always did it so it was the only way I knew to make a grocery list!

Menu planning isn't just a time saver, it's a money saver. Fewer nights of "oh well, let's order pizza" (also waistline saver). Planning in advance for crazy days makes life a little easier.

I whipped up a little something for you to print out and use to help you get started if you are lost when it comes to meal planning. After a while you won't even need a handy guide

Here's what I do :)

After perusing the sale ads, I list my meals. I try to base my meals on things I already have on hand and what is on sale.

Also remember to keep an eye out for pantry and freezer staples that are on sale. Keeping a well stocked pantry makes meal planning a cinch.

Plan ahead for busy nights. A slow cooker meal is always great for these kinds of nights.

Know your stores. I know almost exactly what everything costs at the stores I frequent, what is on "sale" at once place may actually be cheaper at regular price somewhere else.

Try something new. I try to add a new recipes every week or so. Plan to do your new meal on a night that you have time to cook.

Don't know how to cook? You are probably wasting a lot of money on eating out and missing out on a lot of fun! Ask friends for simple recipes, there are millions online too. Pick simple recipes (6 ingredients or less) or even slow cooker meals.

A little tip for the cooking-challenged. Watch  Rachael Ray. Seriously. She cooks like a real life person and her little tricks (trash bowl, gathering ingredients, etc.) help streamline cook times. I have learned A TON watching her.

Make meal planning part of your routine and start enjoying fewer stressful nights and have an answer for the "what's for dinner?" question :)

1 comment:

Natassia said...

I love your book you made!! I wish I were that talented!!