Let’s start by saying meal planning is extremely personal. By that I mean everyone and every family is different, so a stock meal plan that works for one person may not work for you. We all have different schedules, time-restraints, likes and dislikes, allergies and more that makes this process extremely specified for each individual. Meal planning and meal prepping are also two separate things. Meal planning simply means making time to make a plan. What we eat is important and important things take time.
If meal planning is a gut wrenching process that Destroys your soul here are a few quick tips.
1. Create a sacred time and space for this process and guard it. Give the kids to your spouse or a grandparent. Get your favorite beverage, sit in your favorite chair, you get the idea.
2. Get organized. Make list and keep them in your phone or a binder so you are not always starting from scratch, have a special notes section in your phone. Have your go to trusted recipe books and blogs so you aren’t just typing in key words on Pinterest.
3. Get help. Maybe this a better role for you spouse and you take on another role like grocery shopping. Share meal plans between your like minded friends who are also struggling with the mental load of meal planning.
4. You do not have to re-create the wheel every week. Keep favorites built in and rotate through them so your family does not get tired of the same things over and over.
5. Know your limits and schedule a plan that fits accordingly. If you don’t get home until 6 everyday then starting a 45 minute casserole from scratch after work should not be in your plan. If baseball practice is every Tuesday then maybe that’s the day you plan for leftovers.
6. Use a themed weekly meal plan so you just need to fill in the blanks.
Dinner Meal Plan Outline Example
Sunday: Big Crockpot
Monday: Leftovers or leftovers re-purposed
Wednesday: Pasta with Veggies
Thursday: Sheet Pan or Stir Fry
Friday: Eat Out
Saturday: Clean out fridge or breakfast
Feeding your people over and over again every day is exhausting but it can be fun too! When you implement routines and strategies to assist the process you can actually find some enjoyment from your accomplishments. Yes, I said JOY!
Live well friends,