Hey y’all! How STINKING exciting is this!? My very FIRST blog post! Having my own blog where I can share my life in detail has been a long time dream of mine! I crave connection and community and most of all inspiration! If you do too then you have come to the right place!
Ok let’s get right into today’s topic! Meal planning! Do you cringe when you hear those words? For a long time I did too until I realized that by simply having a meal plan I.am.set.FREE! It is glorious! After all, our littles will need to eat, weeknights will become busy and occasionally you will want a night off.
Ok I am going to walk you through step by step how I meal plan every two weeks! That’s right my hubby and I only meal plan for TWO HOURS a month and I am excited to teach you our ways! Let’s get started!
- Step 1. First things first! Do your budget y’all! It’s tough to know how much money we have to spend on groceries if we haven’t done our budget yet! We like to do our budget the night before we grocery shop since paydays coincide with our grocery trips. It just keeps it simple.
- Step 2. Make this a joint effort! It can be tough when only one person is planning all of the meals and cooking. Pick a time that is good for the both of you and give yourself about an hour. If this is an area where you feel like you are drowning plan a fun date night around it. For us we both enjoy prepping our freezer dinners together and then loading our freezer with healthy dinners for nights that we are spread a bit thin.
- Step 3. Think about your week ahead. Do you have a lot of sport practices coming up? Do you go to church in the evening? Do you have loaded days where you’re juggling meetings and deadlines? Plan accordingly to avoid the drive thru. Maybe crock pot and instant pot dinners would be beneficial. If you have a down weekend you can make meals ahead of time and stash crock pot dinners in the freezer.
- Step 4. Gather recipes and inspiration! Pinterest is my favorite form of inspiration! You can check out my crazy healthy dinner board here and even the playlist on YouTube for our weekly dinners here! We include direct links to recipes when possible! Come to the meal planning session with your laptop in hand but you’ll want to keep the distractions to a minimum. The goal is to get in, get out and be done with this part!
- Step 5. Sit down together with your meal planning sheets or a spiral notebook. Jot down meals that each of you would like to cook. We split the dinners in half. We both enjoy being in the kitchen and preparing meals but we know we can also fall back on the other person to prepare dinner when we can’t.
- Step 6. Take stock of what you already have on hand and groceries that you will need to buy. You just want to write down the items needed for the recipes as well as regular household items that you are out of.
- Step 7. Go get your groceries! We make a date night out of this. Usually grabbing sushi for me and a sandwich for Josh. He’s not so much of a sushi fan! (hollar if you love a good California roll like me!) We spend about an hour meal planning every two weeks, 3 hours actually grocery shopping and an additional few hours of prepping dinners for the freezer.
That is our meal planning process in a nutshell! It simplifies our life so much. The key here is to create a process that is easily duplicatable! The easier it is to do the easier it will be for you to stick to. If you have any questions or advice that you would like to offer please join me in the comments below! Who’s ready to take control of this process???
P.S. We have created a simple, downloadable meal planning system that will take the guesswork out of meal planning! It’s the system that we use and love!