Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Meal Planning?

Do you use meal planning for your family? I think I need to start. I'm just wondering if there's a good way to go about it to maximize my budget, as far as utilizing left-overs, how far out I should plan, etc. Any advice?

Answer Question

Asked by bltcahill at 7:51 PM on Oct. 7, 2009 in Food & Drink

Level 1 (3 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • It's cheaper to cook "from scratch" so I buy items that can be cooked then morphed.

    Roasted chicken becomes chicken Caesar salads then the carcass is cooked down into soup/ chicken and dumplings. 1 whole chicken is 3 meals

    I take all my left over veggies and make veggie soup or veggie chili if they start to pile up OR veggie omelets and we have breakfast for dinner

    left overs can be turned into burritos or tacos very easily-- left over chicken, roast, even fish

    I also cook extra sides to assemble fast meals. --- I'll have tons of Thanksgiving left over recipes coming soon!


    Answer by ecodani at 8:24 PM on Oct. 7, 2009

  • I so suck at the whole left overs thing. When we do have them DH eats them for breakfast and then there isn't enough to make a full meal out of later... there is also the problem of if anything is left over in the pan then someone goes and eats it as a late night snack...this is why we are fat I guess... :0) We do always boil down the bones to make soup or stock though!

    Answer by But_Mommie at 9:29 PM on Oct. 7, 2009

  • we don't often have leftovers because my hubby eats like he's going to starve the next day lol, but i make a list of dinners for 2 weeks out, then write out the ingredients. I know if it will last us 2 days or 1 because i've made them a zillion times, so i just make 2 weeks worth of food, and when im on a strict budget i stick to cheaper things that last longer.

    Answer by NaKeYJaKeYsMoMy at 11:30 PM on Oct. 7, 2009

  • I definitely meal plan. The ads come here on Wednesday, and Friday is trash day, so Thursday, I clean out the cupboards and the fridge, and take a quick inventory of what we have on hand. Then I look at the ads, and plan my menu based on what I have and what's on sale. I plan a week at a time, but if whole chickens are on sale for 59cents a pound, I buy several and freeze for other weeks, so I stock up on items that we use often when there's a good sale.

    As for leftovers, I'm feeding basically 3 men at this point...hubby & sons 20 & 17. What few leftpver there are usually get used for lunches, or if we really have a lot (rare) I'll do a "Leftover Buffet" night, to use everything up.

    Answer by ohwrite at 12:38 AM on Oct. 8, 2009

  • I absolutely meal-plan. It saves time, money and stress. Here are my best tips for saving at the grocery store:

    Leftovers are either frozen or eaten for lunch. We all have thermoses.
    I do weekly plans, and look at the next two weeks before I go grocery shopping. I keep my recipes and meal plans in a Yahoo email account. Here are examples:
    Week of 10/11
    Sunday – chili
    Monday – not crab cakes, tofu fish sticks, baked sweet potato “fries”
    Tuesday – peanut noodles
    Wednesday – tamale bean pie
    Thursday – Mexican bean and pasta bake
    Friday – breakfast for dinner – pancakes and fruit
    Saturday – pizza (on the grill, weather permitting

    Week of 10/4
    Sunday – white chili
    Monday – lentil sloppy joes
    Tuesday – curry
    Wednesday – sou

    Answer by rkoloms at 6:28 AM on Oct. 8, 2009

  • We meal plan, too. We spend about $150 for two weeks of groceries on a family of 3 1/2 (still preggo and VERY hungry lol)
    All our leftovers are eaten for lunches or when I don't feel like cooking I reheat leftovers. Saves us money because we don't run out to eat somewhere if we have plenty of food in the house.

    Answer by bethany_smith at 9:26 AM on Oct. 8, 2009

  • I I use a base outline that goes like this
    1 fish meal
    1 chicken meal
    1 fav meal
    1 breakfast meal
    1 nonmeat meal
    1 beef meal
    1 salad or soup meal

    As far as leftovers they are me lunch the next day

    Answer by Alieda at 11:29 AM on Oct. 8, 2009

  • When im going to go get groceries i will sit down and think of how many nights im going to get for then i will write down like i want to make bbq chicken so i wll get a big bag of chicken for that then i will get something like a hamburger helper meal to also use with the chicken b/c the bag usually has about 7pieces so you can make 3 meals with that.Things like mashed potatoes,rice,salads,or pastas you can also use as a side dish for the next night. If you have any more questions feel free to email me. I have a hard time with it sometimes b/c i always want to find something different but normal. sorry so long see ya. Kristy

    Answer by AdamsKris at 12:31 PM on Oct. 8, 2009

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.