Fail to plan, plan to fail. That’s what they say, right? Well, that couldn’t be more true. Especially for people (like me) who have very busy schedules, kids, and a full-time job. I’ve tested it time and time again. I “plan” to start eating healthy, but when the day’s craziness is in full swing, and hunger strikes, I will eat whatever is the easiest and quickest option. Usually, that tends to be the unhealthy option as well. That’s why I decided to begin meal planning. It takes some time, once a week, to plan and buy everything you need. But once you do, eating and cooking healthy food for you and your family will be so much easier!
Anyone that knows me well knows I always go the techie route before ever trying to plan things with a pen and paper. I just love using technology and having everything I need in the palm of my hand. So, when deciding what to use to plan my meals, I went on a search for the perfect app. After much trail and error, I found an (almost) perfect app that suits my needs. I say “almost” because I find it does have a few glitches here and there, but I’m hoping that through updates they will be fixed soon.
Food.com App (Formerly known as Food on the Table)
I LOVE this app, and (of course) I will tell you why. With this app you can:
- Search for or add your own recipes through the app to your own virtual “Recipe Box”
- Add recipes from your Recipe Box into your weekly menu
- Add all ingredients from your weekly menu into your shopping list
- View sales currently in effect at your local supermarket
It’s great! To plan your meals, all you need is your smart phone or tablet and some time! This is the usual process:
1. Search for new recipes & add them to your recipe book and menu (or you could add your own)
2. Once added to your menu, the ingredients for the recipes will automatically be added to your shopping cart. There, you can add more items and delete items you already have on hand at home.
3. Finally, the app allows its users to see the sales currently offered at supermarkets near you. You can either view all the sales in one particular store, or you can see which items in your shopping list are on sale near you.
For those who prefer printables, there are many nice meal planning and menu options out there. These are a few I found that seem to be very easy to use:
For the Home
It can also be nice to have the weekly menu displayed in your household so that everyone can know (and maybe also help with) what will be on their plates that week! These are my favorites due to their simplicity and feasibility of creating.
The ideas in this post are meant to help, primarily, with dinner planning, although much of it can be used in planning all other meals as well. In my life, though, breakfast tends to be coffee and a small snack like granola bars or a “Bagel Thin”, and lunch is usually leftovers or a sandwich or salad. However, planning those meals and snacks as well will assure you of healthy eating habits all day long!