Two years ago, I attended a Relief Society meeting where we were taught to build a Zion in our ourselves, our marriage, our families and our communities. They gave us great ideas for dates, holidays, cleaning, raising children, etc. And I want to share their wealth of knowledge with you! Here is their advice on weekly meal planning...
"5 quick tips for successful menu planning:
1. How Often:
Decide how often you want to visit the supermarket, whether it's once a week, every two weeks, or once a month - ultimately it will depend on your schedule, and your family's needs.
2. Number of meals:
Work out how many meals you will need in that time frame. Remember to take into considerations main meals, side dishes, dessert, drinks, eating out, special occasions, expected visitors, and leftover nights.
You may want to have a simple list of meals for the week ahead, but rather than assigning a day to each of them, you can choose something from the list depending on your daily schedule. However, if you prefer to be more organized, you could write down exact meals for each day of the week.
3. Menu rotation:
You may choose to write up two weeks worth of menus, or you could opt for a month's worth. Remember to leave a few nights blank when you can try out new recipes, or have leftovers. You should also take into consideration the seasons, so that you can buy produce when it's cheaper, and fresher, and include more soups and stews in winter, or salads for summer etc.
4. Dietary requirements:
Use menu planning to help you meet your dietary requirements, for example including more fish each week, or eating more vegetables each day. To keep your menu varied, try using broad categories as the basis for your menu plan, such as:
Poultry, Fish, Pasta or rice based, Vegetarian, Red meat, Beans, Eggs or cheese.
5. Shopping list:
Write down exactly what you will need by using a meal planner and shopping list, perhaps based on categories such as dairy, frozen foods, grains/pasta/cereals, canned goods, drinks, fruits and vegetables."
This is my version of weekly meal planning. I write down a week worth of meals on my calendar that is on my refrigerator. I write down the ingredients that I need and go shopping. I like having 7 meals written out, but we can eat them whenever we like during the week. My mood changes a lot!
I found some helpful websites you should visit:
To see when fruits & veggies are in season click here!
To see nutritional needs click here!
For weekly meal planner template click here!
For an online meal planner click here!
For printable grocery lists click here!