Thursday, October 25, 2018

How to Meal Plan - 9 Tips for Simpler and Better Meal Planning

How to Meal Plan - 9 Tips for Simpler and Better Meal Planning

Meal planning is a great way of saving money and achieving complete nutrition. If you don't meal plan for what you're going to eat, you may end up grabbing whatever is fastest and most readily available especially for busiest nights and weekends. 

These meal planning tips will make it simpler and better. 

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What Is Meal Planning?
It is simply planning in advance what you’re going to eat. In most cases, people plan several days’ worth of meals and snacks. It makes shopping, cooking and preparing food so much easier. 

Meal Planning can also reduce your food budget effectively. 

Click the image below to receive all the free printables you'll need to get started planning your meals in advance.


1. How often to shop 

If you can only shop once a week then you’re going to want to plan an entire week's worth of meals. If you can shop every three or four days then you only have to plan those meals.

2. Meal plan for healthy snacks too

Include snacks into your meal planning. It's too easy to grab something unhealthy when you don’t have a plan.

3. Make tasty meals

Sure, you can plan to have carrots and celery sticks for a snack. However, if you don't like carrots and celery sticks, there's a bigger risk of you letting that snack get moldy in the fridge while you go out for some fries. 

Make sure the recipes and foods you put into your meal plans are actually foods that you want to eat.

4. Identify recipe sources

Where are you going to find your meal ideas? Identify a handful of great sources of nutritious recipes. For example, you might begin to subscribe to a few nutritious eating blogs, or you might buy a few cookbooks.

5. Create a meal planning system

Create systems to organize and plan. For example, maybe you hit the supermarket on Wednesday and Sunday. Sit down at your table and make a full meal plan before you shop. Add ingredients from each recipe to your shopping list so you go to the store knowing exactly what you need to buy.

Meal planning tips

6. Get folks involved in meal planning

If you're cooking for a family, get others involved in the meal planning - and maybe even the preparation! When people feel that they have a say in what is served, they tend to be more excited about it. You might, for example, let a child choose one meal a week. They can also help prepare that meal.

7. Have contingency plans

It always makes sense to have some backup food. You might not have leftovers that you expected from last night’s dinner and now you have nothing for lunch. If you have some backups then you’re ready to go.

8. Meal Plan Ahead

If you live a super busy life (and who doesn't), then consider a few make-ahead recipes. These are healthy recipes that you can prepare on the weekend, freeze, and thaw and heat for dinner. Casseroles are great for this. Crockpot recipes are also wonderful. 
You can put everything together in the morning and come home to dinner.

Check out this Fuzz-free Dinner


9. Meal Planning theme

It's easy to get into a meal planning rut. Meatless Monday, Taco Tuesday, noodles on Wednesday, and so on. While that does provide a framework to make planning easier, it can also start to feel limiting. Try to include one new recipe each week. It's good to feel excited about your food.

Meal planning can take some getting used to. It requires you to create a few new lifestyle habits. However, once you've integrated these habits into your routine, you'll wonder how you ever managed without it. It’s a great way to make sure that each meal is nutritious and delicious. 

Meal Planning is overwhelming especially if you have picky eaters kids. This Meal Planning Guide and Printables are perfect for busy moms with picky eaters. 


Are you ready to get started planning healthy meals on a budget? These simple meal plan tips can surely help you.

More smart saving money tips and meal plan ideas on Pinterest. 

Don't forget to download your free meal planning printables and Instant Pot Recipes.

Meal planning ideas


  1. So many great ideas in this post! Thank you for inspiring me to be better organised :)

  2. I should totally consider planning for snacks too. I realize I always have healthy meals planned but I never get it right when I want to just nibble on something

  3. Meal planning is something that I really need to start doing! I have always tried in the past, but I seem to never be able to keep it up. I love the idea of meal prepping snacks as well, that is usually where I go wrong! Love these tips!

    Ashlee |

  4. You got me at "If you don't meal plan for what you're going to eat, you may end up grabbing whatever is fastest" and unhealthy for sure. These are great tips and very timely especially for the upcoming busy holidays.

  5. A good plan is powerful indeed! And I love that you share the importance of having a backup plan just in case. That really does help! Thanks a ton ♡

  6. I love making meals ahead of time! There's nothing better than coming home at the end of the day and being able to take a meal out of the fridge/freezer.

  7. Great ideas! I have freezer meals as one of my tips in my upcoming blog about Staying on track through the holidays.