I meal plan every Sunday, and I grocery shop every Tuesday. That is what works best for our family. So before we get too far into this, you need to pick days that work for your family. My way is NOT the only way to meal plan, but it works for us!
How do I do it?
Get ready folks, this is ground breaking…. I pick 7 meals and write them down. That’s it! I don’t really assign them a day, if I know I am planning to use leftover I make sure to make the first meal early in the week. Once I have my meals on paper I see what I have in the freezer and pantry, then I make my shopping list. I don’t really plan breakfast and lunch, we all eat the same breakfasts and lunches weekly.
Sample Easy Plan:
- Chicken Caeser Pitas- 2 Chicken breast in the crockpot or pressure cooker with caeser dressing. I shred the chicken and serve them on warm naan bread with bag caeser salad.
- Sausage, peppers, and potatoes- I use chicken sausage from Sam’s Club, mini peppers, and red potatoes. I chop and toss veggies in olive oil, chop sausage into bite size pieces and roast.
- Pot roast and mashed potatoes, asparagus- I use this recipe for my pot roast, and I roast the asparagus in the over with olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Spaghetti and meatballs with brussel sprouts- Doesn’t get an easier than this. Whole wheat pasta, jar sauce from Aldi, meatballs (I make mine and freeze) and roasted brussel sprouts.
- Pork loin, grilled veggies, sweet potatoes- Use your favorite dry rub on your pork loin and grill it! My veggies of choice for the grill are asparagus and zucchini because they don’t fall through the grates very easily. For the sweet potatoes… I just cube them and roast them.
- Fried Rice- Use leftover pork loin, veggies, cooked brown rice, 2-3 eggs, and soy sauce.
I realize this is not gourmet, this is not the healthiest meal plan on the planet. BUT… it is easy, and it is waaaaaayyyy cheaper than eating out! It’s also much healthier than eat at the drive through or serving boxed macaroni and cheese 7 nights a week.
The End Game
In the end for me it’s about putting healthier food on the table for my family. It’s about not going broke eating the food our bodies need. It’s also about keeping my sanity, I always have a plan for dinner this way. No more running to the store at 5pm or ordering pizza, or furiously trying to throw a meal together while my kids cry that they are starving. Sitting down to a meal together each night is important to us. It our time to check in with each other and a little meal planning has made that a whole lot easier for us.