What to Cook for Dinner?
A 6 step plan for how to plan a month’s worth of meals in about an hour. It’s the plan I use to quickly plan a month’s worth of meals at our house and I hope it can help you too.
How many times has dinner time rolled around and you go to the cupboard to see what you’ll make? As you search your refrigerator and cupboards you see lots of ingredients but it’s hard to put them together into a meal.
The kids are whining, they want to know when dinner will be ready. Your hubby arrives home and is hungry too. You have a choice, throw something together or grab something out.
Out of frustration, you grab a frozen meal out of the freezer you purchased just in case. Or you head out the door to grab something to eat to get everyone fed after a long day. You know there has to be a better way to get your family fed.
Or maybe you do meal plan but it’s hard to get meals planned each week. Sometimes you forget to put your meal plan together. Or you just don’t have the time to meal plan each week. I understand.
In the past, I would meal plan each week, but sometimes I wouldn’t get it done and then we would end up eating out because I didn’t know what to make for dinner.
That’s why I switched to planning my meals by the month instead of by the week.
In this week’s, podcast I’m sharing my system for how to plan a month’s worth of meal in about an hour. The first few times you give this type of meal planning a try, it may take you a little longer. But once you get everything organized, your meal planning time will short and only once a month too.
How to Plan a Month’s Worth of Meal in about an Hour
Grab a calendar or print a month on one-page sheet. This will be where you are going to plan your dinners of the month. I only put dinners on here.
Make a list of your favorite dinners. I use one of my printable sheets with section heading for each type of meat. One section for beef, one from ground beef, chicken, vegetarian meals, pork, and fish.
On the back of the favorite meals sheet, I add a list of a few meals about 5 that we love to have each month. Pizza is a very popular meal at our house so I make sure to put it on our meal plan at least twice a month.
Add your absolute favorite meals to your calendar that are on the back of the page. I’ll add them to our meal plan at least once or twice during the month. I like to add our must have meals first so I don’t forget to add them.
Search your pantry and freezer. See what you have stocked up and make a list. Try to coordinate what you have on hand with meals on your favorites sheet.
Make your meal plan. Add the meals to your monthly meal plan sheet. I like to make sure to keep our protein sources spread out over the month. Nobody at our house wants to each chicken, even if it’s a different kind for 5-6 days in a row. I’m sure that’s true for your family too.
Get the Homemaking Planner
The homemaking planner has all the sheets you need to plan a week or a month’s worth of meals. Plus lots of other helpful sheets to keep your day organized one page at a time.
Extra Tips to Keep Your Meal Plan from Getting Stale
Vary your Meals by Season
I like to make a favorite meals list for each season of the year.
We have a different list of favorite meals for summer, winter, spring and fall. Using these 4 different lists helps us to keep our meals varied and we stay out of the same dinner rut.
Add New Recipes Each Month
I try to add at least one new meal a month and sometimes up to 5 new meals to our monthly meal plan. It’s easy to do when you save them as you see them while surfing the web or social media.
Having a stock of new recipes to try can help you vary your meal plan easily and you may find a new favorite meal to add to your list.
That’s my tips for how to plan a month’s worth of meal in about an hour. I hope they were helpful for you and will help you get started meal planning or help you meal plan less often.
What’s your favorite way to plan your meals, by the week, the day of, or a month at a time?
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