It’s no secret: I hate planning a weekly menu. In my thinking, it ranks right up there with cleaning the bathroom. It’s just not on my list of fun things to do.
Veteran menu-makers agree, however, that planning a menu is a crucial step in keeping a grocery budget in check. It helps keep us “eating within our means,” so to speak. Here are four benefits of meal planning:
1. A menu plan helps prevent those last-minute trips to the grocery store.
We’ve all been there, haven’t we? Right in the middle of preparing a recipe, we find that we’re “out” of something. And off to the grocery store we go. Extra miles, extra time . . . and it could have been prevented with a well-planned menu.
2. A menu plan is useful for planning meals based on weekly sales.
It just makes sense to plan weekly meals based on the best deals in the local stores. If you aren’t planning ahead, you are undoubtedly spending more money by just preparing whatever “sounds good” at the moment.
3. A menu plan curbs impulse shopping.
Very few people can just run into the grocery store and come out with one or two things. Let’s face it–we all grab a few extras while we’re in there, especially if we’re already hungry. Taking time to come up with a well-planned menu and grocery list eliminates the need for those extra stops at the grocery store, saving extra dollars that would certainly have been spent on impulsive purchases.
4. A menu plan helps get balanced meals on the table consistently.
If you have already planned out meals for the week and purchased all the ingredients, there will be no need for last-minute fast food due to lack of planning. Big savings!
If you are a reluctant meal planner like me, you’ll want to be here tomorrow to find out how I am simplifying the menu-planning process–and to find out about an exciting new giveaway! If you haven’t already, please take a minute to subscribe for free daily updates from Contented at Home. You can also follow on Facebook or Twitter.
And so, without further ado, here’s my evening meal plan for this week:
Monday–Creamed ham with potatoes and green beans
Tuesday—Bacon Cheeseburger Pasta, vegetable
Wednesday–Meatloaf, baked potatoes, vegetable
Thursday—Meatloaf Shepherd’s Pie
Friday–Sloppy joes on whole-wheat buns, cole slaw, carrots and dip
Have some great menu-planning tips to share? Leave a comment–I’d love to learn from you!
This post contributes to Menu Plan Monday.