Easy tips for family meal planning

Categories: Etc.

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By Sarah from www.saraviz.com

I would dare venture a bet that many working families eat more takeout or fast food than they want to. I know this because that was my family. That is, until my husband and I sat down and came up with a plan that not only cuts down on the amount of money we spend ordering out, but also has helped us to make dinnertime a Family Event:

1. Create a weekly meal plan.

Trust me, our meals are nothing fancy, usually consisting of basic variations of pasta, homemade pizza, tacos, chicken, fish, pork, steak, and my boys’ favorite, Topsy Turvy Night (breakfast for dinner!)

2. Grocery shop accordingly.

There is nothing worse than getting ready to prepare something and realizing you don’t have the necessary ingredients! My go-to site for new recipes is www.allrecipes.com. I love that you can search the site by their most popular recipes, ingredients and cooking methods, or even by cut of meat! (You know, for when you happen to have that extra corned beef sitting around and you don’t know how to cook it…)

3. Post the meal plan so your family can see it.

This cuts down on the endless, “What are we having for dinnerrrrrrrrrrrr?” questions and also prepares your children for what they can expect to see that night on their plates.

4. Decide who’s preparing each meal.

When both parents work outside the home, cooking becomes an equal-opportunity task. My husband and I don’t really make any formal arrangement though: Our deal is whoever walks in the door first is the one who starts getting dinner ready. Thankfully, this varies enough so that neither of us feels like we’re carrying the entire load.

5. Sit down together to eat.

Dinnertime is my absolute favorite part of the day. After a full day away from my children, I am eager to hear from them and just soak up their silly boyishness! Gathering for a meal together allows us all to focus fully on one another without the distractions of a blaring television or general household chaos.

6. Allow yourself a night off from the kitchen.

Because who doesn’t enjoy pizza delivery every once in a while???

Do you have any family meal planning tips that you’d like to share?

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One comment so far...

  • Another great solution to family meal planning is MenuForTheWeek.com - a meal planning service that delivers easy to make, affordable, tasty meal ideas straight to your inbox every week!

    Betsy  |  January 13th, 2010 at 12:50 pm