Shopping Tips for Meal Planning

Posted on: January 23rd, 2014 by Hayley James No Comments

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Something as trivial as thinking what to eat for the next meal can be such a hassle for most people.  I have been there—I mean I, too, had my share of exploring the pantry up and down trying to whip up a meal and ended up with a Chinese take-out because I failed to organise something.

We think nothing of planning our social life, business plan or trading plan and now we can plan our meals too.

Having a meal plan helps you and your family to feel more organised, to cut back on those quick unhealthy food take-outs and instant meal preparations, saves you more money, energy and time—which means reducing your stress in one area of your life.

So to get you started, here are some shopping tips for meal planning:

1.       You need to set aside a time to plan and organise your meals. 15 minutes will do to plan a weekly menu. When planning, go for weekly plans so as not to get too overwhelmed.  

2.       List down the ingredients you need on your shopping list. Buy the things you don’t currently have. If it helps, you can create a spreadsheet and classify your ingredients so that you will know exactly what to shop for and what to cook for. Just keep a list and don't rely on your memory. Otherwise, there will be a great possibility to buy what's not on the list.

3.       Involve the family and consider everyone’s tastes when planning. You don’t want to be cooking multiple meals. With the family’s involvement, they will be more likely to eat the food you prepare.

4.       To save you more time, you can reuse the old plans you have already created. Keep the family’s all-time favourites. But don’t forget to include variety as well.

5.       Don’t shop when you’re hungry or thirsty! There will be a tendency to include and buy more food which are not in your budget and shopping list.

6.       Include in your meal planning some quick and easy meals in case you can’t stick to your original plan and include this in your shopping list.  

Image courtesy of Ambro / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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