You might think that meal planning is not necessary or that it is overwhelming… Maybe you believe that it is too hard. Still, try to imagine a week of successfully made dinners with all the groceries shopped for and recipes selected in advance. If you are the one who does the cooking in your household and has a career, it can be hard to cook every day.
Let us face it not only does it take up a lot of time, but it also creates a mess that you need to clean up later. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if you had a good system that would make all this easier? How would you feel if you could answer the question “What’s for dinner” only once for the whole week? With meal planning, it is entirely possible.
Start planning your meals during the weekend and it will free up your time during the week. People who have balanced lives know how important planning and doing things in advance really is. It is actually one of the reasons why they have balanced lives, after all. You can do the same thing, and it just takes a little effort and determination. After all, how do you really feel about cooking during the week? You would probably rather make use of that time for something else.
Don’t you hate it when you have to go shopping every day and prepare dinner every single night? What if I told you that you could select your dinners along with their recipes, shop for ingredients, and prepare those ingredients? You would probably tell me that I am crazy because you already know that. It sounds so simple. However, how about doing all that over the weekend?
You can take care of the whole week during the weekend. Start on Friday, and do your planning. Write down the meals you plan to cook during the weekend and prepare their recipes. Do not forget to write the shopping list. Saturday is a great day to do your shopping, whether it is in the morning or at night. Buy everything that you will need for the week. Sunday is your day to do the meal prep. Everything you can do in advance, do. Life will be so much easier once you learn how to plan your meals. Read on because I will tell you more tips for successful diet planning.
Create a list of the meals you will need
Ask yourself how many meals you will have to make. Write it down. For example, you might need five breakfasts for everyone, four family dinners, three solo lunches, one dinner for kids and the sitter… This will give you an idea of how many recipes you need to find and prepare. It will also help you create a shopping list, so you do not even have to go shopping during the week.
The matter of time
Figure out how much time you have to prepare those meals. Take the list you wrote down earlier and add the time. For example, two solo dinners in 30 minutes. Now figure out how much time you will have during which day. Maybe you have enough time on Monday night, but you are super busy on Tuesday and Wednesday. You see where I am going with this; you can cook one big meal on Monday night that can be used for lunch on Tuesday and Wednesday. Of course, do not forget about the quick meals that you can serve on busy days. What is excellent in diet planning is that you can always plan a pizza night and order in.
Put a calendar on the fridge
Now that you have it all figured out, put it on a calendar that you can place on the refrigerator. The great thing about it is that you will never again have to answer the question, “What’s for dinner?” It will also make you stick to the decision of prepping these meals.
Everything that you can do in advance, do. That includes chopping the vegetables, grating the cheese, or making a sauce. Do anything you can in advance and you will thank yourself later? If you watch cooking shows, you know how amazing it looks when a cook has everything prepared. You will feel like a professional cook yourself.
Have you managed to do everything? You used your weekend wisely and enjoyed the fruits of it. When the week has gone by, a new weekend arrives. It is time for you to repeat the process. This might be hard for you at first, but trust me, once you get used to it, it will become a useful routine. Take a second to reflect on the difference diet planning has made in your life. Doesn’t your week run smoothly now that you do not have so much work when you need to cook? Be persistent and make a habit out of planning your meals. After all, it will make your life a lot easier.