Monday, January 30, 2012

Dinner Planning

I have had a few people ask me how do you plan your meals with all the other stuff you have going on? I am a stay at home mom and in order for me to manage it financially, I can't order food or eat out often so it takes a little planning to make sure I have something to cook every night. The way I found to be the most successful is to plan 3 days in advance. I will sit down and think to myself what do I want to make for dinner for the next 3 days? I am not the kind of person who likes to eat the same thing every Tuesday so I will usually think of a couple of items I know we like and maybe one new recipe on the third day. For example:

Monday I want Chinese so I think I will make:                Chicken Chow mein  
So I will write down all the ingredients I need on my grocery list. I then think ok Tuesday I will have beef so how about for Tuesday I make                    Steaks

Then by Wednesday I would like something without meat like pasta or I will also use a leftover from Sunday like chili

To me it is too difficult to plan a week in advance but 3 to 4 days has always been easy for me. This way you are going to the store every 4 days. To some people it may seem like a lot but let me tell you this way you use up all the food and your produce doesn't go bad. Just a little planning also keeps your from getting frazzled thinking about what are we going to eat tonight and then just ordering out. I noticed I will spend the same amount on one dinner from a restaurant that I would have for 3 days. My grocery bill used to be easily over $100 dollars each week and I was always throwing something out. Now it is smaller increments because I am going about twice a week less stress and we use up everything. Give it a try and let me know what you think or if you have any questions. Don't get me wrong I do sometimes get too busy and unable to get to the store so we end up throwing something together from the freezer or pantry or just ordering pizza. 


  1. I love this idea!

    I'm the mom who usually pops over to the store every day (or every other day, if I'm lucky!). I've tried planning for a month of meals, which just stresses me out. I've tried planning for two weeks, which stresses me out just a wee-bit-less. But four days? Three days? I can do that!

    Thanks for the idea!

  2. I always thought New Yorkers went to the store everyday with a small bag. Haha! I do go weekly and always have a plan for at least 3 meals. Hopefully I have something left over to make a second meal.

    1. is easy to go to the store everyday if you want but starts to stress me out. I hear you on the left overs. Sometimes I have some most often I don't.

  3. We do this too in our household and it helps so much in reducing the amount of food we throw away. Plus, then I have a plan when I get home and I'm not scrambling to try and find something to make for dinner. Yay!

  4. I love your Chinese noodle. Looks so colourful, healthy and yummy!!! You make me crave for fried noodle now :D

  5. I want to make your Chicken Chow Mein. Planning is great! Some weeks I got it down sometimes I haven't. I think your plan works. I frequently find myself at the grocers every two days. This week I did well I've only been twice.

  6. that steak looks delicious--yum yum!!!! I'm thinking about making steak for dinner!
    Andrea thanks for visiting today!!!! I'm following you back :)

  7. That Chicken Chow Mein looks outrageously good. :) I would eat that every day. :)

  8. looks wonderful lovely site nice to meet you