Today, we’re sharing how easy it is to meal plan by the month.
Now, I know there’s a chance I’ve lost some of you at the words “meal plan” and others of you at the word “month” because it might seem overwhelming at first.
But stick with me, I promise it’s worth it ?
Making Time to Meal Plan During Busy Seasons
Recently, my accountability partner and I were discussing how we take extra time on Sunday to plan out the week. It’s something I’ve been doing for a while now and it really helps to keep us organized.
During that conversation, she mentioned she meal plans by the week. But when I brought up how easy to was to meal plan by the month, she decided to give it a try too.
Truthfully, we used to dread grocery shopping until we started meal planning. I’m talking we would rather clean toilets than have to grocery shop – it was that bad.
But everything changed once we found a system that worked!
Monthly meal planning works best if you know your family’s schedule in advance. That said, this meal planning system will still work even if your plans change along the way.
As I mentioned above, we usually sit down on the same day each week to write out a grocery list based on the meal plan list. It really makes grocery shopping easier which feels like a win-win!
In the past, we used a weekly calendar to keep track of our menu ideas. Once we switched to a monthly meal planning list though we haven’t looked back.
Here’s a look at 5 simple steps to help you meal plan by the month…
Step #1 – Fill in your list or calendar with all the activities your family will be celebrating.
For example, birthdays, anniversaries, sleepovers, or fun food holidays like Fat Tuesday or Super Bowl Sunday. That way, you can make the menu special for that day.
Step #2 – Assign each day of the week a different food group or category.
- Monday – Meatless, Sheet Pan, or One-Pot Meal
- Tuesday – Cultural Cuisine
- Wednesday – Hearty Salad
- Thursday – Soup, Chowder, Stew or Chili
- Friday – Pizza, Burgers, or Charcuterie Boards
- Saturday – Dinner Out/Leftovers, Grill or Seafood
- Sunday – Family Favorites / Try Something New / Sunday Supper
Step #3 – Add your tried and true recipes to the monthly meal planning list.
These will be menu items you currently make that are family favorites or meals that are quick and easy.
Step #4- Fill in any empty dates with new recipes or meals you’ve been wanting to try.
This may be hard for picky eaters but it’s good for us to try new experiences and break out of our comfort zone, right?
Step #5 – Once you have all the days of the month filled out, make a grocery list based on the way you shop (weekly, biweekly, or monthly).
This is also a great time to consider what you’ll be having for breakfast each morning and the supplies you may need for packing lunches and snacks.
That way everything will be down on the same list!
I know there are sometimes you probably won’t follow the monthly meal planning list exactly because unexpected events come up and life can get a little bananas.
When and/if that happens just move whatever menu item you were going to have on the day you miss to the following month and you’ll already be ahead of the game!
We like using the monthly meal planning list so much, we made a few for you to try out too, or feel free to just use a piece of notebook paper…
We definitely want to make things as easy as possible for you because we know life gets hectic. So in addition, we’ve decided to offer our monthly menu to subscribers as well and I’ll be sharing all the details soon.
Do you have any favorite meal planning tips or tricks? We’d love to hear about them!
Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.
Other Organization Posts to Enjoy:
- The Best Way to Organize Your Kitchen
- Pantry Organization Tips Made Easy
- 52 Weeks to a Simplified and Organized Home Challenge
- Our Favorite Home Organization Essentials
- 10 Tips for a More Organized Life