How To Meal Plan (With Video)

How To Meal Plan (With Video)

How To Meal Plan (With Video)

I grew up doing a meal plan. When I left for a summer job while in college, I made a meal plan. After I was married, I still made a meal plan. Now as a family of 6, meal planning is even more important than it was before.

Having to make extra trips to the store for an ingredient or two every night, or even just 2 or 3 nights a week, is going to end up costing you a lot more. Think about it, how many times do you go into the store for a gallon of milk or pack of chicken, and come out with two bags of groceries?

Not only is meal planning going to help limit impulse shopping, and thus save you money, it’s going to best use the resources you already have at home.

Related Post: The Right Way To Coupon

Today I decided to give making a video a try. This is not really my thing, but something I am trying to get better at. Maybe you are wondering why, if video making is not my thing, wouldn’t I just write-up a standard post. Well there are a ton of blog posts already out there on how to meal plan. Yet, I still see people expressing confusion over this. So I though a visual may go over better.

Part 1 – Before You Even Sit Down To Plan

Important Highlights:

  • Check the sales adds for the stores you shop at.
  • Look through your cupboards/freezer/fridge .
  • Be as detailed as you need to:
    • Plan breakfast and lunch if you need to.
    • Plan drinks if it helps prevent having to stop into the store for a gallon of milk during the week.
    • Write down the sides to go with your dinner, if you don’t have enough options already in your cupboard.
  • Write down your plan.
    • You can use a printable (see bottom of post), a blank sheet of paper, a dry erase board, or a calendar.

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Part 2 – Planning The Week

Important Highlights:

  • Plan meals based on what is on sale that week.
  • Plan meals based on what is already in your cupboard.
    • Do you have everything to make tuna casserole but the tuna? Buying one can of tuna is better than having to buy EVERYTHING to make something else.
  • Don’t over plan.
    • It is helpful to leave a day free, to allow for leftovers. This helps reduce wasted food, and again saves you money.
  • Be flexible.
    • Just because you wrote mac and cheese on Tuesday, doesn’t mean that’s the day you HAVE to actually make the mac and cheese.


In the video I forgot to mention to allow for leftovers, that’s besides the day that I leave free every week. If you make something that you know will have enough leftovers for another dinner, write it into your meal plan. In my example I had one day that was still unplanned and I said I would come back to that day. Well, I was over planning in the video. That is now a day called leftovers. That’s in addition to the one day I leave blank every week.

Also take into consideration your schedule. Busy nights with sports or late shifts at work, are great days for leftovers or crock pot dinners.

Related Post: Skillet Fryer Chicken

As promised the link for the meal planning sheet I use. Again that blogs terms of service do not allow me to link you directly to the printable. There are a lot of other crafts on her website, after finding the meal planning printable, take a look around.

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10 thoughts on “How To Meal Plan (With Video)

  1. I really enjoyed this post and the videos were very effective and easy to understand. The problem is too many of us incur a lot of waste in our food, mostly because we are time-poor and don’t think much about menu planning. However I like your system which is simple to follow and helps reduce wastage and saves time in the long run. Thanks so much for also including the download.

    1. I’m glade you found it helpful. I thought the videos would be more enjoyable than anything I could type up.

  2. Love this post! But what I like the most, other than the advice, is how I felt like it was a conversation being had around a cup of coffee–it makes it all so much easier to absorb. Great resource, thanks!

    1. Yes, we do not assign meals to days either. Unless I specifically want a crock pot dinner on a game/practice night.

  3. We’ve been meal planning for years. The only problem I have is getting people to respect the food on the plan so I still have what I need to make dinner!

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