Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Works for Me Menu Planning! (Downloadable Plan)

I am a firm believer in menu planning! I know many of you are also. Coming up with a workable menu plan that is so easy to do each week has changed my life. That is no exaggeration. For years I have tried various menu plan forms and ideas. I have countless attempts on my computer in various folders. I never could stick to one because it was too complicated, too boring or just didn't work for me.

I am putting my blank form online available for download. For those who are not spreadsheet literate, this may be of some help.

I am not saying that this will work for everyone, because I believe we all have unique situations and families. But I thought if I shared what "worked for me", it might bless others.

A few tips that have made it so easy for me are:

  • try to have lunches and breakfasts the same each week, this saves rethinking each week
  • it is always okay to change the plan on a whim, but at least you have something set up if need be.
  • it helps to have a freezer inventory when making menu
  • also, if at all possible, have a list of all your family favorite meals with you when you plan
  • keep staples stocked so meal planning is easy
  • keep a grocery list with you as you plan to jot down what might be needed this week
  • I have made each day of the week be the same "type" of meal so I just have to fill in the variation. ie. Monday-Beef; Tuesday-Leftover Chicken; Wed.-Meatless; Thurs.-Beef; Friday-Chicken or Meatless; Sat.-Burgers (meat, tuna or quinoa); Sun. Roast chicken.
  • one last important tip! I have a place for various 'tasks' related to each days meal, saves on thinking;-)

I have included an example of mine already filled in.

For your convenience, all you have to do is click the link below. When new dialog box appears choose save, and save to where ever you want to on your computer. (To open and edit this file you need Microsoft Excel)

See more great ideas at Rocks in My Dryer.

1 comment:

Mom2fur said...

That was nice of you to make this! I'm getting back into menu planning again. I've always been pretty good about being able to throw something together from the pantry/fridge/freezer, but actually having a menu plan makes life more interesting and much easier! Last week, I did a lot of prep work in one day and my daughter marvelled at the fridge. "Wow, what's with all the food?"
(You'd think she'd been starved over the past 24 years, LOL!)