With school and work schedules back to normal, it can be difficult to get back into the weekly family dinner routine after a summer of BBQ’s, parties, vacations, and excursions so we came up with a list of helpful tips to get back on track with meal planning. Not only does planning the meals for your family take the guess work out of “what’s for dinner,” it helps you become more efficient while grocery shopping and you have more time to spend with the family!
- First is make a list of 30 meals you know the kids will eat, and then modify the recipe to a healthier version. Generally, most families will eat the same 30 meals over and over.
- Have the kids help with making the list. Make this list personal to your family. Once you have your list, simply assign them a day during the month. The next month, mix it up.
- The other way is to get ONE cookbook, or one website, and plan all your meals from that book. That way, you aren’t overwhelmed by the options of 20 cookbooks on your table. Plus when you go to make the meal, you will remember where you saw the recipe!
- Why do you plan a salad or other fruits and vegetables at every meal? 50% of our diet (kids included) should come from fruits and vegetables! A plant based diet not only ensures your kids are getting the proper nutrients necessary to grow, but also contributes to disease prevention, better behavior, more energy, better skin, better academic performance, and HAPPIER CHILDREN! The younger you teach this to your kids, the more likely they will adopt these behaviors for LIFE.
- Take a look at the family diary. Think about regular classes or after school activities or if you or your partner have to work late on certain days.You will be able to make your weekly menu plan far easier if you know who is going to be around and how much time you have to make & serve up meals.
- Plan ahead and think about batch cooking & freezing. If you plan to make something that freezes well like spaghetti sauce, a stew or casserole make double and freeze the second portion for those days where you won’t have any time to cook.
- Here is an adorable meal planning chart that you can put on the fridge for an easy reference!