Meal Planning 101

Meal Planning 101

With school back in swing and me working full time, meal planning is the only way to provide a healthy home cooked meal for my daughter and dad, plus save time and money.  I try to plan and to cook 3 or 4 meals at home and grocery shop just once a week.

Kathy

1. Grocery List/Meal Plan.

  • Look at your calendar for the upcoming week.  Note how many dinners you will need to make, and anything else you need to shop for (breakfast, school lunches, snacks, get togethers, etc.)
  • Decided what (2 or 3) proteins you want to use and plan your meals accordingly.
  • Pick proteins that can be cooked once and used twice, for example lettuce wrapped tacos and squash spaghetti – use the same protein source.
  • Check your refrigerator, pantry and freezer and note what needs to be used.
  • Review your grocery store sale ad in advance. Can be a good savings especially at Whole Foods.
  • Keep your menus simple during the week.
  • Use a form grocery list already completed with your kitchen staples.
  • Add items as soon as you run out.

2. Shop Smartly.

  • Don’t forget your grocery list and coupons.
  • Shop on a day that works best for your schedule. Weekdays at 5 are usually not it!
  • Review the sale ad in advance.  Again.
  • Don’t overdo the fresh produce and end up throwing valuable money and fruits and veggies out.   Always keep your freezer stocked with frozen organic vegetables for quick side dishes or ad-ins.

3. Eat healthy!

  • Plan meals and snacks using healthy basics.
  • Limit processed or prepared foods.
  • Serve at least one serving of vegetables and/or fruit with each meal.
  • Always keep your kitchen well-stocked with organic and healthy basics.
  • Limit use of microwave – most items can be warmed just as quickly on the stove (enamel cast iron pot) or (cooking sheet) in oven.

4. Save time.

  • Use leftovers for lunches or as part of another meal.
  • Pre-wash your fruits and veggies, store in bowls in fridge (rather than drawers) for quick healthy snacks.
  • Use time-saving appliances: slow cooker, rice cooker, toaster oven.
  • Rotisserie chickens are great too and can be used a multitude of ways.
  • Salad bars can be a big time saver for chopped fresh produce.
  • Grocery delivery.

Other Resources:

Here are a couple of websites that will do the meal planning for your for a monthly or yearly fee which is really not bad.

The Nourished Kitchen

The focus here is on whole, unrefined foods prepared according to traditional methods that optimize nutrient density.  Cherish your body, nourish your kitchen.

http://nourishedkitchen.com/about-the-nourished-kitchen/

E-Meals

Emeals can be customized for Paleo, vegetarian and organic and then further planned by your grocery store.

https://www.emeals.com/account/signup.php

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2 Comments to “Meal Planning 101”

  1. Reblogged this on Grace Got Healthy! and commented:
    Meal Planning 101

  2. My fiance and I are good about “loosely” planning our dinners through out the week and kind of doing our own things for breakfast and lunch + snacks, but this makes me think being a little more structured might just make more sense

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