Every year in January, I see a massive surge in page views of all of my meal planning posts. It then dips a little bit in February, a bit more in March and by April they’re back to normal again. This could indicate one of two things – either lots of people give up meal planning after a few months or they get so good at it that they no longer need to be searching for information on it!
I’d like to think it’s the latter but it’s more likely that people tend to give up for whatever reason. I asked a couple of people who I know started meal planning last year and stopped within a few weeks why they stopped doing it and they both said it was too much hassle! I completely don’t get this because for the half an hour maximum I spend meal planning and writing my shopping list on a Sunday morning, I save at least that during the week because I know what I’m cooking each night and I always have the things in that I need. It’s worth it just for that, never mind the money I save because there’s no need to nip to the shops through the week and there’s so much less waste!
If you don’t meal plan already, I can’t recommend it highly enough and if you do, keep going and keep following to see if you can save even more money and time!
First of all, if you don’t really know too much about meal planning then I’d recommend you get yourself a lovely new notebook (the back of an envelope is just as good but not as pretty) and start with my post about how to meal plan.
Before you write your meal plan and shopping list, it’s worth considering if you could change the way you shop to save a little more money. Most supermarkets have at the very least a premium brand, an own brand and a budget brand of most things you will need so it’s worth trying the next brand down and seeing if you can tell the difference.
Your menu plan might change while you’re shopping if you see a good deal on something so be prepared to be a bit flexible and remember if you change something to take off everything on your shopping list for the meal you originally planned.
When you get back from your shopping, write up your finalised menu for the week ahead on one of the gorgeous free downloadable templates on my Pinterest board:
Follow Cass bailey’s board Menu planners – including lots of free downloadable templates! on Pinterest.
And while I’m on the subject of Pinterest, I have a second board that you might like – my ‘All things meal planning’ board which is filled with ideas for family meals:
Don’t get disheartened if you don’t stick to your plan every night. I tend to find that at least twice a week we need a last minute change for one reason or another. The trick is to try and always have a good store cupboard so you can keep the same main ingredient and to use things you already have in to mix it up a little or to make it go further.
If you’re a blogger, it might help keep you motivated if you join in with Mrs M’s Meal Planning Monday which I always find a great source of inspiration as lots of bloggers share their meal plans each week.
And finally, don’t forget to pop over to my meal planning blog, Meal Planning Made Easy, which will be filled (fingers crossed) with recipes and inspiration for all things meal planning.
Good Luck x x
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