Believe me, when I started writing this blog and much less, this post, meal planning was due to come up sometime but I dreaded it. I dislike planning meals but if you want to lose weight, meal planning is essential. Cooking your own meal means you control the portions, you control what goes into the meal and you also control the leftovers if there are any. In the long run, it’s more budget friendly because you get more bang for your buck. So do you need to prep for months in advance and buy a deep freezer to stock up your bulk chicken and meat for months on end? No. Do you need to plan to vacuum seal crock pot recipes for three months from now? You can but you don’t have to.
For me, meal planning is a simple as taking stock of what’s in my pantry, what I have in my fridge and planning for the week, or two weeks. It all depends on how much I want to go to the store. For you and for me, the process should be enjoyable and effective, and for me a list and a lot of cookbooks is what helps me. Plus, knowing you enjoy cooking and trying new things is always fun. So here’s my tips for meal planning that you could try to see if that works for you. I was looking at theKitchn.com and their 15 tips for Better Weekly Meal Planning and I love some of the ideas.
A list at the store is essential. I try to always go to the store with a list. The list helps me stay on track and if I don’t go with a list, I end up buying egg roll wrappers but nothing to go into the egg roll wrappers. Having the list helps you know your ingredients, what you need to have and it keeps you out of just randomly shopping. It’s saved me when I’ve shopped hungry too.
Recipes are so good. I pin a lot of recipes and I’ll admit, they are not good recipes. Sometimes you need a recipe for deep-fried cheesecake egg rolls. You can find some good stuff too. I like to mix something new with my standards. If you’re not into cooking, you can still do this. Try to remember the standard stuff you ate as a child and learn how to cook those. That will give you a good base and then add new things.
Another thing I liked from this list was try the Farmer’s Market. I love our farmer’s market and I plan on blogging from there soon because you can get the freshest stuff there. You can also try new things, learn about new fruits, vegetables and more. Ask the vendor if you can try something if you’ve never tasted it. Ask people for their recipes and how to cook whatever new thing you are trying.
Meal planning doesn’t have to be hard. You can make it simple and easy to work with your life.