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The Best Way To Meal Plan To Save You TimeIf you’ve heard what’s for dinner for the last time, then it’s time to find the best way to meal plan.

If I had a dollar for every text message or request I got asking “what’s for dinner?” even before 5 o’clock, I’d be rich!

I’ve been planning my meals for years now. It’s become one of those habits that once you start, you’ll never go back.

In a given week, I will have planned 21 meals. I know what you’re thinking, 21 meals is A LOT to plan.

I assure you it’s not as bad as it seems, plus the savings you’ll gain from meal planning will be more than worth the time and effort.

So I’ll teach you the best way to meal plan so that you save time and you’ll see how easy it is to do.

Plus, this is the best tight budget meal plan method to save you money.

And with this easy family meal plan, you’ll be on your way to the grocery store in no time.

Creating a meal plan only requires a small investment of your time, and it will save you A LOT of money (I can’t stress this enough) so let’s get started!

best way to meal plan

There Are A Few Simple Things You Will Need To Do To Get Started:

A. Look Up The Store Flyer From Your Grocery Store

When the new sales cycle starts at Publix, I go online and write down any deals that I might be able to incorporate into my meal plan.

There are so many sales out there, and it’s easier if you limit the list down to the only food you like and the tried and true recipes your family loves.

I compare anything that is not on sale to another store like Aldi’s. If it’s cheaper at Aldi’s, I’ll head there as a second stop to make sure I’m getting the best deal possible on all my groceries.

You may also consider checking what deals are on Ibotta to earn a little cash back (and if you haven’t used it before, sign up through this link to earn an extra $10 with your first rebate.

Also, sign up for Fetch Rewards! It’s like Ibotta but easier! (Enter my referral code, BQ1CF, during signup and you’ll get 2,000 Fetch Points ($2.00 in points!) when you complete one receipt. Fetch Rewards)  You’re welcome!)

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B. Keep A List Of Your Current Food Inventory

Download this handy Kitchen Inventory sheet!

You don’t want to waste your precious money on food you already have!

I personally love the Spice Inventory Printable from Creative Savings to keep track of all of my spices.

best way to meal plan

C. Write It Down

If you prefer to write this down in a word document on your computer, or in your notepad app on your phone go for it. When you’re in the planning stage it doesn’t matter where you’re writing it down as long as you are.

Personally, I use my own weekly meal planner. I love being able to have my grocery list and meal plan all in one place!

D. List Of Your Recipes And Ingredients

Pinterest makes it so easy to keep all of your recipes in one place. Plus, there are dozens of new recipes every day! I have a board dedicated to recipes on my Pinterest account full of mouthwatering recipes.

My recipes are always handy whenever I’m meal planning. That’s why it’s an easy family meal plan.

E. Know Your Spending Limit

As you are creating your meal plan you need to be aware of your budget. Meal planning won’t save you any money if you are constantly going over budget.

You need to keep this number in mind and evaluate your recipes to decide if you will be able to make them and still keep a tight budget meal plan.

Knowing what you should be paying before you go to the store will help you create a tight budget meal plan.

best way to meal plan

Now What?

It’s time to start meal planning!

The first thing I like to do is look at my current food inventory and try to make meals around what I already have. This is why I love this easy family meal plan method.

For example, last week I already had taco shells, Mexican blend cheese, and ground beef. I bought ground beef and tortilla chips and we had tacos with chips and salsa for dinner.

Once you’ve used up as much as you can of what you already have, look at what’s on sale. Using your sales ad, look at your recipe list and see what meals you could create out of items that are on sale.

If you are still short on meals, then you might have to buy a few items that aren’t on sale.

Repeat these steps to create your lunches and breakfast meals as well.

best way to meal plan

Here’s My Plan For The Week:

Breakfasts for the Week: English muffins / Smoothies / Bacon & Eggs / Toast & Yogurt / Veggie Quiche

Lunches for the Week:  Peanut butter sandwich, carrots, apple, chips / Tuna Melts / Lunch Meat Wraps

Sunday – Dinner out

Monday – Breakfast for Dinner

Tuesday – Taco Ring

Wednesday – Crack Bread

Thursday – Skinny Shrimp Alfredo Pasta Bake

Friday & Saturday – Leftovers

Before I go to the grocery store I clip my coupons, rebates, I double-check my list, and my out of pocket cost. I make sure that my budget can cover the grocery list and any extras I might need.

If you are over budget, you might need to rethink your recipes or see where you can make cost-cutting adjustments. If there is any leftover money in my budget, I will get a few snacks for us.

This week there was a special deal on ice cream sandwiches. Since ice cream is a want and not a need, and I had a little extra left in my budget, I was able to grab a couple of them for our special sweets for the week.

Meal planning makes it possible for me to get everything I need for a week’s worth of meals in one trip.

I know exactly what to cook each night without digging through the fridge to attempt to throw something together.

So I hope you’ve learned the best way to meal plan so that you save time and you’ll see how easy it is to do.

Plus, this is the best tight budget meal plan method to save you money.

And with this easy family meal plan, you’ll be on your way to the grocery store in no time.

Planning meals has made it easier to shop sales and saves me money at the grocery store.

 

YOUR TURN: What are your best way to meal plan tips? Let me know in the comments below!

best way to meal plan
The Best Way To Meal Plan To Save You Time
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