We all know we "should" meal plan. It saves money, we eat healthier, plus, when it's done right, it's convenient!
Even with those benefits, it's still hard to do! So here are my top 5 tips to make meal planning easier.
Set aside time to meal plan and prep. I like to do this on the weekend and split it in 2 days, but whenever it fits in your schedule works. Give yourself 30 minutes to plan everything out, an hour to grocery shop (or 30 minutes to Instacart it!), and 30 minutes to do some prep like cut vegetables, sort groceries, etc.
Only pick 1 new recipe a week. I know it's easy to get overwhelmed by all the pretty Pinterest worthy pictures of healthy and easy meals, but when it comes down to it, life is tiring and at the end of working & momming & errands, figuring out a new recipe isn't always as fun as it sounded on Sunday.
Plan in convenience foods. For so long I felt like I wasn't supposed to rely on convenience foods, even if they were healthy. So I'd plan to make all these things, then wouldn't make them, then I'd get takeout more often and the ingredients in my fridge would go to waste. Now I place a Daily Harvest or Every Table order every few months and stash the food in the freezer so it's easy to grab and go when I need it. Plus ordering in bulk saves money!
Plan your dinners out or takeout. Similar to above, I'd plan a whole week of wonderful meals. And by Wednesday, I'd be so ready for takeout. Now I plan it into our week, both with health and not wasting food. Better for everyone.
Variety. Make sure you're planning a little variety--both in your meals and the ingredients. Healthy meals are full of a variety of veggies, fruits, complex carbs, and proteins, so mix it up!
If you need a way to keep it all organized, check out the FREE meal planner and grocery list download!