How I Meal and Grocery Plan

7:00 am

As an avid list maker in today's post I share my 8 Simple Tips for how I manage and organise my family's weekly grocery shop and meal plan.

Step 1
Weekly Overview
Each week I start off with a weekly overview. This includes 7 Dinner Options along the top of the page and everything else is broken into smaller segments such as breakfast items, lunch items, kids things, pets and household. Theres also always a couple of spare boxes for any special occasions that we may be buying for that week.

Step 2
Check the Pantry
Start by checking what you already have in the pantry and fridge and base the coming weeks meals around those existing items.

Step 3
Recipe Planning
Upon deciding on what dishes you want to make, write down every single ingredients you're going to need for that dish. Even I have some of the items already, I write them down anyway but simply cross  them off. (You'll see why in Step 6)

Step 4
Find Multiple Uses
For the new items you're into your shop that week, make sure for things like a large bag of rice, you'll be getting more than one use out that item during the week. It's more cost effective.

Step 5
Order Online
This may not be available where you live but for me, it such a time saver. I can simply sit down and make my order during the day, when I get time and have my husband collect them on his way home from work. It's worth the small fee to have someone else do my shopping for me than to try and shop for an hour with a toddler.

The other benefits of online shopping is being able to arrange everything in price order (lowest to highest) to be certain I'm getting the best deals of the day. I can also save previous trolley lists and favourite items I purchase each and every shop.

Step 6
Keep the List
Once the groceries are home, keep your original list and put it somewhere where everyone in the family can easily refer to it. This way, my husband knows exactly what's in the cupboard, exactly what's reserved for specific menu items and exactly what he needs to make a dish if he's cooking that evening.

Step 7
Keep Side Lists
This is handy especially if you don't have online shopping access. Keep lists of items you need or purchase every week. Along with lists of things you often forget and end up making a special trip for. For us, it's items such as bin liners, light bulbs, cling film etc.

Step 8
Recipe References
Keep or start a recipe reference with you favourite or go-to family meals to help you change up the weekly menus each shop.

So those are my 8 Steps for Weekly Meal and Grocery Planning. Let me know if you have any pointers that you live by.

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