Menu and Meal Planning Tips

Meal planning is our #1 recommendation for saving money at the grocery store. Besides saving money, it lowers the stress of making meals each day because you have already figured out what to make and have all the ingredients on hand!

When planning your weekly menus, have your family’s favorite foods or recipes in mind.  Consider what is in-season and what foods will provide the best value during this time of year.  Also think about holiday traditions or special events that may be coming up.

Start by checking out what you already have on hand. Are there any foods that need to be used before they go bad? Next, look through sales flyers in your local newspaper or online.

Once you have a good idea of the items you have on hand and those on sale, start filling in the different meals for the week. Check out this easy planning tool from Choose My Plate. Don’t forget to include snacks!

Tip: Make meal planning easier; keep a running list of all the meals your family likes. Add meals that you know how to make without a recipe. Save those meals for nights when time is tight.

After you have planned out your week, make a shopping list. It is easy to break up the list by the different sections of the grocery store. Use the list tool from Choose MyPlate to make your trips to the grocery store faster with less headaches!