Tuesday’s are generally when I do the meal planning for our family for the next week. I’m sure not an expert but this is what has been working for a while now.
This week I listened to Amy from raising arrows.net on her new podcast series talk about meal planning. It’s called large family mealtime but most her tips are applicable to any size family. My main take away for my family was to work on simplifying things and work some “no brainer meals” into our week. Although I’m having trouble making a link right now I recommend looking it up!
Here’s a little sneak peak into how I do meal planning- I keep it simple!
First I take a moment to see what we have in the house already;
- steak and hamburger in the freezer (we buy beef 1/2 a cow at a time)
- 2 blocks mozzarella cheese
- almond flour
Then I decide on meals starting on Thursday night since I grocery shop typically on Thursday. I also take a moment to claim coupons on the kroger app. I try to plan what meals on can based on what we have left in the house.
Since I’m tired after going grocery shopping I want something easy for Thursday night. I have a $1.00 off coupon for rotisserie chicken so I’m going to get one of those and pair it with frozen vegetables and bread and butter for the kids.
Seeing I have mozzarella and almond flour on hand I’m going to make homemade low carb pizzas on Friday. All I have to buy for that is tomato sauce and cream cheese (which I have a coupon for both! Score!) I’ll also buy some mushrooms and maybe some other vegetable if I see anything on sale to jazz it up some. I can’t see yet what’s going to be on sale at Kroger on Thursday because I think it’s either Wednesday or Thursday that they put out a new flyer. I really like having 2 days between my meal planning and my shopping trip because then I have some time to add anything to my list that I may have forgotten.
Saturday I’ll use a package of hamburger from the freezer and make tacos. I think from now on I’m going to dub Saturday or just one night per week, “mexican night” so I can have a “no brainer meal” planned each week. Every one likes Mexican in our family and it’s easy. Saturday afternoon we are going to a birthday party and I’m bringing toppings for burgers so I made sure and wrote that down.
Sunday I need a potluck meal for our church group. If I have time Saturday I’ll make cookies with E since we have everything on hand and I’ll also make some baked chicken since I have a coupon for chicken thighs. Sunday night we can eat on leftovers.
Monday- soup (I’m going to try and find a canned low carb one to make it easy), salad and homemade biscuits.
Tuesday- Fish and vegetables, rice for the family, cauliflower rice for me
Wednesday- BLT wraps
Then I list the staples I keep on hand for breakfast and lunch and take an inventory of cleaning supplies, diapers, laundry detergent etc and add what we’ll need to the list. Some people don’t count paper towels and such as ‘grocery’ but since I buy every thing in the same store it makes sense for me to do it that way.
This week we are also going to a birthday party so I added “birthday boy present” and gift wrap to the list.
I get our toiletries at the grocery store so I take inventory of shampoo and soap and stuff.
I also take an inventory of my diabetes supplies and see if I need to go by the pharmacy and refill anything.
If I do need some items from another store I’ll write at the top of my list what stores I’m going to and in what order I need to go.
As you can see in the photo, I get out a notebook and one page is labeled, “meal menu” and the other is “shopping list”. I group my shopping list by where in the store the items are located. Remember, I have two little one’s with me- I need to get out ASAP!
So, that’s it. I may not cook the meals on the exact day I had planned on, sometimes I’ll decide that soup sounds better than fish tonight or whatever and make that instead. As you can see since I only shop once a week I use a lot of frozen meat and produce. In the beginning of the week we eat up the fresh stuff and by the end of the week we are eating the frozen and canned stuff. I keep bananas and other fruit to snack on and I’ll also usually by some canned and dried fruit for the kids to eat once the fresh is gone.