As we head into the New Year after a busy holiday season many of us are thinking about ways we can trim our budgets and save some money. One of the easiest ways to save is by cutting down on my food expenses and I save money with a weekly meal plan. I find that when I follow my meal plan I end up spending less money at the store and also end up wasting less food–which in turn saves me money.
I have to admit, I resisted doing a meal plan for many years, saying that there was no way I could plan what I wanted to eat a week from now! Where is the spontaneity in that? What if I just wasn’t in the mood for that nights meal? I learned however, that even with a meal plan there is some flexibility, as I now treat my weekly meal plan as more of a guide for the week as opposed to a hard and fast rule. If a night get busy and I need something quick I just adjust my plan and use a meal from another night or I pull out one of my already prepared freezer meals.
Save Money with a Weekly Meal Plan
When you have the tools needed to make yummy, healthy and affordable meals for your family and have planned ahead with your meal plan and freezer cooking the dinnertime rush doesn’t have to be hard.
So here is how I do my meal planning. First I print out the NEPA MOM Printable Weekly Meal Plan. I then check my fridge, freezer and pantry and see if there are any items that I need to use up soon. I also take note of any items that I need to stock up on. I then consult my calendar to see what nights I need to make quick meals and fill in those with our favorite standbys–like tacos or pasta meals.
Then, I check the store fliers and see what items are on sale that week and plan my shopping trip to round out my meals for the week. At this point I also make a note of what is on sale this week that would make a great meal for the following week. If there is a particularly good sale, especially on meat, then I tend to stock up and add that to my meal plan as well.
I also like to try out new recipes on my meal plan so that we don’t get bored eating the same thing over and over each week. For the past year I have been getting the Savory Magazine from Giant when I check out but I recently learned that they have an online app that I can add directly to my phone to help me with my meal plan. With this app I can browse through recipes and check for coupons and special savings right from my phone in the store. It really makes meal planning easy and fun!
How yummy does this look from Savory? No more dinnertime boredom!
I hope these tips help you plan your meals and save some money in 2017!
This is a sponsored post on behalf of GIANT Food Store and the Build Your Influence Summit. All opinions are 100% my own.