It can be difficult to stay energized and creative in the kitchen. We fall into ruts, making the same meal and snacks on repeat. The hard part about meal planning is that it’s a very personal decision based on your food preferences. What works well for one person may not work at all for another. The goal behind meal planning is to find a routine that is sustainable, effective and most of all enjoyable. Here are some tips to get inspired and organized for easy meal planning.
- Spend time looking at blogs and websites that have the type of recipes you enjoy. This might mean searching social media and food blogs for inspiration. Then tag or print recipes that you plan to try.
- Try themed days. As a general guide for weekly dinner planning have Monday be chicken night, Tuesday be pasta night, Wednesday be meatless, soup, or taco night. This might be especially helpful for generating a grocery list and thinking through recipes for a long period of time.
- Plan to make enough for leftovers. Regularly cook extra meat and vegetables to save for a later meal or snack. Especially if you are trying to eat healthy or control your portions. It’s best to put the leftovers in a separate container before serving. You could also plan to make a double batch of a casserole or soup to freeze for a future date.
- Keep a realistic amount of food in your refrigerator. It’s one thing to be prepared and it’s another to be overstuffed in your fridge or pantry. If your kitchen is too full it’s easy to get overwhelmed. When you can’t see what’s in the back of the refrigerator it gets forgotten and often goes to waste. Keeping a well organized fridge and pantry helps to simplify meal planning.