You may or may not have heard a lot of things about meal planning, such as how it can save you time, money, and help you eat healthier. If you’ve heard of it and think it’s a good idea, then you’re probably wondering how you even get started with it.
Whilst there’s certainly plenty of information and ideas for great meal planning available online, it can get a bit overwhelming when you have too much information and people telling you different things.
So, in this post, we’re going to give you some tips on how to make your life easier with meal planning – but not just that, we’re going to show you how to start in a way that’s not overwhelming and that can really help you simplify the process so you can find the system that works for you.
Write down a list of meals:
The first step of meal planning is knowing what you want to cook – and to keep this simple, just start with the things your family likes to eat and come up with a few recipes for the week. So, for example, on Monday you could have mac and cheese, on Tuesday you could have chicken fajitas, on Wednesday you could have a nice pumpkin soup. Don’t try to over complicate it with overly fancy recipes – meal planning is about making your life easier, so keep things simple.
Create a plan:
Now that you’ve written down your list of meals for the week, it’s time to plan them out. You can use a paper meal planner, you can use something like Trello, or even just a simple Google calendar – whichever you find works for you. Then you’re going to add in your meals to each day and create a section for all the ingredients you’ll need to get for each meal. This helps you stay focused when shopping so that you’re not buying random things you don’t need and that never get eaten.
Once you have your meal plan ready to go, it’s time to take your shopping list and start buying the things you need. You should allocate a block of time each week to go shopping at your chosen supermarket such as Tesco Ireland or wherever you prefer and gather up everything you need in one go.
Batch your cooking:
This is where meal planning goes to the next level. You have your plan together, and you have your ingredients all ready to go. Now you’re going to set aside a day of the week that suits you, such as a Saturday or Sunday to batch prep all your meals. Batching is a great way to keep all your ingredients fresh and also saves a lot of time. You can buy food containers from places like Amazon to store everything in so that when you come home after work, you have all the ingredients ready to go and just throw them in a pot – this means less washing up, too. The other way you can do this is by actually cooking everything on one day and then storing it in the fridge or freezer until it’s needed.