Hello everyone! I am back to do another post about organizing. If you missed the last one on keeping a clean house click here. Today I am going to tell you how I stay on top of cooking meals in my house.
If you have never done a menu for your meals, you are missing out. Making a menu of your weeks/months dinners can make all the difference on having a nice meal on the table every night. I used to make a list of some meals, make a grocery list and go shopping. This works fine but I have found a much more organized way.
First make a master list of all the dinners that you make on a regular basis. I categorized mine in styles of food (American, Italian, Mexican, etc.) I typed them up in excel and left room at the bottom so that if I tried a new recipe that I liked, I could write it in. I call this my Meals & Categories List.
After you create your own Meals & Categories List, you have two options. I have a weekly menu and a monthly menu. The weekly menu is nice if you go shopping frequently. The chart has Breakfast, Lunch, Snack, and Dinner categories. You fill in what you want (using your meals & categories list) M-F and at the bottom of your chart you can write down what you need to get from the store for the meals you are having that week. I think this method is great if you have young children and are in need of ideas for lunches and snacks. I found that my kids ate an abnormal amount of chicken nuggets and hot dogs… poor kids. This chart really helped with that. Here is my Weekly Menu Chart.
The monthly menu is my personal favorite! I got this idea from a woman’s conference in Yakima and things have never been the same. The monthly Menu works by:
- labeling each day of the week with a category. For example you might choose casseroles, or Mexican, or meals with chicken, etc.
- Plug in 4-5 meals under each day. ( refer to your meals & categories list)
- Plug in bread, fruits and veggies for each day that you would like to have that, or you could just have a category for sides.
Here is the Monthly Menu that I created for my family.
Planning out your meals and rotating them will make meal time more manageable by:
- Reducing time spent last minute shopping trips.
- Avoiding the question “what do you feel like having tonight?”
- Meals are more systematic and routine. This includes food storage as well. With the Monthly Menu, If you make spaghetti 12 times a year, you need 12 packages of spaghetti for a years supply…
- Your Kids and Spouse will LOVE you!
I hope you enjoy the benefits of having planned ahead. Dinners will never be the same!
How would you like your own form you can type into and print out? Announcing the My Monthly Meal Plan FREE Download!! Here is what it looks like:
Click here to get your FREE Download of “My Monthly Meal Plan” .
**Coming up next in the Organizing series: Keeping track of your savings & spending !!
Food is my love language. But so is saving money. So I like to combine the two a lot and make thrifty make ahead and freeze meals to save time. Because life is busy, and freezer meals can come to the rescue for all of us. And yes, they actually CAN taste good. Read more...