Five Meal Planning Tips for Moms Who Struggle With Meal Planning

If you've been around the blog for a while, you'll know that homemaking has never been something that has come naturally to me. Over the years, however, I have learned. And, over my twenty or so years of marriage, I've become a better homemaker. In this series, I'm sharing tips for five homemaking areas.

Meal planning has never been particularly easy for me. But I have learned much and improved much in almost twenty years of marriage. So I'll gladly share some of the things that have made meal planning easier for me.

At the end of the post, I'm sharing an amazing resource that will help with meal planning. It will only be around for a limited time, so make sure you keep reading.

Meal planning tips


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Save money with meal planning.

This one sounds obvious, but so many times we choose not to plan meals even though we know this is true. When we have a plan, we aren't as likely to stop for fast food. We aren't as likely to go to the store with no list and buy everything we see. When we have a plan, we don't spend as much at the store.

In our early married years eating out was the common practice. Most of the time it's because I didn't have a plan. And when there isn't a plan and everyone's hungry, you are going to get something to eat somewhere. And it's going to cost you money.

Know that meal planning helps you to feed your family healthy food.

This is another one that should be obvious but is often overlooked. When I have planned my meals for the week, I will buy things at the store that fit those meals. I'm much less likely to buy junk foods and convenience foods because they aren't in my plan. When I've planned out my meals, I can make sure that the meals I'm planning are healthy and nutritious.

There are different ways to meal plan, and you can choose what fits your family.

I have a friend who plans the whole month worth of meals at a time. She has the meals written in on a white board calendar, and they are pretty much written in stone. This doesn't work for me. If I have a meal planned, and we can't do it that night for some reason, I have some OCD children who will not be comfortable with the change. 

We have a flexible schedule, and we need a flexible plan. Instead of a calendar, I have my weekly meals in a list. That way when it turns out that we are going to be gone all day Friday, I can choose a crockpot meal and pop it in that morning, so it will be ready by evening. I choose a variety for the week- crockpot, ground beef, chicken, pasta- and then pick the easiest one to make that day.

It is okay to have a "meal rotation."

I have about fifteen to twenty meals I feel like I can cook well. I reuse those meals. I rotate through them each month. Some of them are particularly popular, and I might use those every week. Some of them are less liked, and I might only use them once a month.

Have one location to store your recipes.

I learned this one the hard way. Over the years I picked up recipes I could make well. But they were all spread out- some in one cookbook, some in another. Now I've consolidated things. 

I mark recipes wherever I find them- pinning them on Pinterest or saving the page as a bookmark. But once I have a recipe that I love and we eat, I print it out and put it in a binder. I keep the pages in page protectors so that I can spread my binder out and not worry about spills while I'm cooking. Whether you store your recipes digitally or print them out like I do, have one consistent place for them.

Meal planning tips

This post was originally one of five posts with tips for homemaking. You can find the others here.

Five Meal Planning Tips
Five Tips for Living Frugally
Five Tips for Cleaning and Organizing
Five Tips for New Homeschoolers
Five Tips for Holiday Planning


*** Need more meal planning help?

What if there was just one thing standing between you and a healthier life?

I know it seems hard to believe but hear me out…

Healthy meals don’t just happen.

(Wouldn’t that be nice?)

You have to decide what you’re eating, make your list, buy the ingredients, and then prepare everything.

And the domino that starts it all is knowing what you’re going to eat.

In other words, the path to health begins with a plan.

Today, you can get your hands on ready-made meal plans with a focus on quick & simple, but delicious, healthy meals – complete with shopping lists and fresh recipes – for a ridiculously low price.

It’s called the Healthy Meal Planning Bundle 2019 and here’s a taste of what it includes:
~ A carefully-curated library of simple, nutritious, whole food recipes, beautifully formatted in 12 digital cookbooks.
~ An easy-to-use index for every single recipe, to help you sort by food allergy, eating style, quick meals, cooking method, and more.
~ 30+ unique made-for-you meals plans complete with grocery lists and prep reminders (4-week dinner plans, school & work lunch plans, breakfast rotations, party plans, and more!)
~ Meal planning printables for those who love paper & pen and creating their own custom plans.

Plus healthy eating resources on clean eating, a flavor crash course (so your food tastes ah-ma-zing!), strategies for helping kids with pickiness, allergies or oral SPD, and more!

No need to search Pinterest for recipes, only to find yourself emerge an hour later from the rabbit hole. ;) With the Healthy Meal Planning Bundle, you’ll have hundreds of recipes available in one place, so you can find what you need quickly, without distraction.

Make those dominos fall and start your New Year right by picking up your copy of the Healthy Meal Planning Bundle right here:

Meal planning help

6 comments

  1. Great tips! I especially like the last one to store recipes in one place. For some reason I've never done this. It's going on my to-do list!

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  2. I was so tired of scrambling to find things!

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  3. I need to get more organized with my recipes for sure! Thanks for sharing the great tips.

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    1. You're welcome. I always struggle to stay on top of it. :-)

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  4. These are some great tips. I really need to get more organized with stuff like this.
    Thanks for stopping by and sharing on Throwback Thursday Blog-Style. I can't wait to see what you share this week.

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    1. It's a big help for me to be somewhat organized. I still have to cook it, but it's easier. :-)

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