The ONE THING that makes meal planning sooooooo much easier!
How do you feel about meal planning? Do you like to wing it? Do you resist planning because you think you’ll feel restricted? Do you prefer to shop every day, once a month or somewhere in between? Do you do plan meticulously and when you don’t you feel all out of sorts?
Well, there are loads of benefits to planning: you save money and time and you’re likely to waste less food – you avoid those bendy carrots leaks at the bottom of fridge that you haven’t used! It can also be healthier to plan because you can make sure that your meals are well balanced throughout the week. You can plan in a wide range of fruits and vegetables, covering the whole rainbow so that you get all the vitamins and minerals that you need. And your shopping bill will be cheaper because you just buy what you need for the meals you’ve planned, rather than buying extra things you think you might need, and then don’t use.
When you plan once a week or every couple of weeks you have made all those decisions ahead of time. Every morning you know what your meals are going to be for the day, and it takes away the stress of having to think about it all over again
So, why don’t we plan? There are lots of reasons but what I hear most from people is that they don’t have enough time, they think it will be too complicated and feel they are just not organised enough in life in general to plan to that level of detail. In this video and in the blog below I share one key tip to reduce the barrier to planning!
When we’ve got a whole world of recipes and meal ideas to choose from, we can become overwhelmed by the level of choice. It makes us freeze and we can’t think what to cook. If you reduce that choice down a little bit, you reduce the barrier so that it’s easier to start meal planning that be good to know
One way we can do this is to pick a different theme for every night of the week. So instead of choosing from hundreds of recipes you are just choosing from two, three, or four of your favourites. This takes makes the decision process and lot easier and therefore less stressful.
You could have:
- Slow-cooker night
- Curry night
- Italian night
- Jacket potato night
- Freezer meal night
- Wrap night
- Fish night
- Chicken night
- And more!
It’s also helpful to think about how your themes will fit into your lifestyle. Perhaps you have a night where you’re home for half an hour and then you are out again, but perhaps on that day you have some time in the morning or the night before to prep. That could be a good day for slow cooker night. Perhaps you have other days where you have a longer time to prepare dinner, or others where you are not home until late, and so need something ready to grab.
Have a look at your week, consider which themes would work best for which nights. Write a list for yourself and pick a few meal ideas for each theme and each night. That way you have a meal repertoire of 20 or 30 different meals so you have a nice variery, but your and that’s all you need so that will give you an array of 20, 30, or 4 different meals, but your decision-making process each week is a lot easier because you you’ve already made the bigger decisions about what you’re going to have each night.
Let us know in the comments if this is helpful, whether you plan or not and what themes you might include! If you aren’t already part of our Motivationfish community on Facebook, come and join us – we share lots of tips and it’s a lovely encouraging group.