Meal Planning and a Meal Plan

Several People have asked how I do my meal plan and my grocery list. So this week, I am giving you BOTH! I am sharing with you my FREE PRINTABLE meal plan and grocery list, my meal plan with links to recipes is below AND I'm sharing my personal meal plan and grocery list!

So, here's a couple pictures, one blank and one in progress. Then I'll give you my steps!

In Progress

Weekly Meal Planning Step by Step Guide:

First, I check my calendar. I use an Erin Condren Life Planner, to keep track of all the things going on at my house. I find that doing this BEFORE meal planning generally means that I don't plan a complicated meal on a busy night or after I've had a day that really is not conducive to cooking. It also means that I can check for when I might have time to do prep work the night before and I can put it in my calendar when I need to.

Second, I talk to my kids about what things they like to see on the meal plan. My little ones generally want the same things, but my big kids have started exploring Pinterest and watch the Food Network now and again and they have shown an interest in branching out! It also helps them feel more involved in what we're eating and doing when they get to help make the plan.

Third, we check the cabinets and the refrigerator. Maybe what you want is already in your house. Maybe something strikes you as sounding wonderful! Or maybe you realize you shouldn't buy that snack anymore because no one is eating it... No matter what, checking the pantry, fridge and freezer is a smart thing to do before moving forward.

Fourth, I gather the recipes and start planning out my meals and groceries. I do it all on one sheet. It's here and this helps me make sure that I don't get too much or not enough. Or, if I'm using half and half creamer, for example, I know I don't need the whole container that is purchased, so I may check for another recipe to use up that last little bit rather than have it go bad in the fridge.

Finally, I check the coupons and the circulars for sales!!! Chicken was on sale week before last for 39 cents per pound!!! So I got 20 pounds. So last week and this week have been lots and lots of chicken. Which obviously means, this week is.....chicken!

Here's my meal plan and grocery list.

And here are all the links to all the recipes!

BBQ Chicken
Macaroni and Cheese
Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower

Shredded Chicken Tacos with fixings!

Sweet and Sour Chicken
Veggie Stir Fry
White Rice

Chicken and Spinach Alfredo Casserole

Leftover Baked Potato Bar

Burgers and Hot Dogs

Beef Stroganoff

How's your week shaping up?

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