Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Meal Planning

Tonight my husband and I decided that we have a problem.  We have both admitted that we contribute to this problem, and really feel pretty clueless as to where to start to fix it.  Our problem is meal planning.  We have no idea how to get started or make it easier.  I am notorious for coming home, not knowing what to eat, and so we each make our own dinner.  We both want to cook more so we can enjoy our dinners together and try new things.  He claims that if he were to make me dinner I wouldn't eat it (and honestly, he's right because most everything he makes has either noodles or hamburger in it & that gets old real fast for me).  I don't have a lot of experience cooking or trying new recipes so it's unchartered territory for me which makes me not want to do it after a long day of work and then an evening at the gym.  I WANT to be a good cook, I WANT to try new things... but wanting to and actually doing it are two different things!
So, I'm in need of your advice!  I'm looking for healthy meal ideas that are quick and easy.  What do you make for dinner?  What does a typical day of eating look like for you? What's your "go to" meal that you make in a hurry and it's healthy and tastes good? 
Do you meal plan?  If so, how?  What are your best tips for meal planning?  Do you do it daily, weekly or monthly?
I can't wait to hear your advice!  I'd also LOVE for you to share some of your favorite recipes with me!  Thanks for helping me out {Kev appreciates it too!}

6 comments:

Heather @ Cancer Mommy said...

I'm not a huge fan of cooking and when we do cook at lot of what we eat are pastas, because that is what I can eat. Check out some websites, there are some awesome meal planning sites out there that I have used in the past. Good luck!!

C Stevens said...

I'm a planner! I usually go week by week and let the sale items in the grocery store circulars lead me. If I have time tomorrow I will try to send you some ideas.

Lorna said...

Hey friend! We cook every night and have since day 1 of being married. I have a ton of great recipes that are easy and healthy. I need to dig them out. Here is one for now until I can get you more. I love doing Crock Pot Tacos with chicken breasts. SUPER EASY and dinner is ready when you walk in the door. Take 3 frozen breasts and 1 can (low sodium) Diced Tomatoes, and 1 pkg taco seasoning (low sodium). Put all ingredients in a crock pot in the am before work on low. Cook for 6-8 hours! Take a spoon and shred the chicken apart when you go to eat. We love having these in low carb tortillas with lettuce, tomato, and cheese and salsa! I do a taco salad too if i don't want the carbs! Enjoy! I have to admit that I have more time than most people since I work from home but we plan each week and do 1 grocery run per week. When we keep it simple, we usually cook chicken breasts, tilapia, turkey brats, steak, salmon etc and then pair those proteins with 2 veggies (brussel sprouts, green beans, steamed carrots, peas, squash, zuchini etc) and I also do brown rice or wheat pasta with FF Cheese sometimes as a side dish. Sounds boring but we like to keep it healthy and simple. Keep in mind you can cook 99% of these ahead of time (I love to cook a bunch up on Sunday's if our week is busy) and then reheat when you get home from work! We also do omelete's with canadian bacon sometimes as 'b-fast for dinner.' Hope this helps! Call if you want more help!!!

:Deliciously Healthy said...

I'm horrible at meal planning! Which stinks, because I really think it helps when sticking to a diet! I've tried doing weekly, but then we change our minds as to what we want to eat, and half the stuff goes bad. When I do plan the meals, I only do it for 2 days at a time. If you find the secret to it, let me know! :D

Journey2Goal said...

You girls are awesome! Thanks for the advice!

Jessie, Jason & Kinley said...

Jason and I do our meal planning weekly. We tried doing it two weeks at a time so that we only went to the store twice a month but that didn't seem to work out so we went to weekly and have had a lot of success. Here is out technique, it may or may not work for you but it is what we have found to work for us. We sit down together usually Saturday afternoon or Sunday before church to look at our calendars of what we have going on that week, who will be home what nights, and who will be cooking the meals. After we decide how many meals we need to plan we then make a list of the meals we want to have that week for example chicken taco, spaghetti, etc. once we have our meals decided then we check the kitchen to see what we need to make each of the meals and that makes our grocery list. For us it wasn’t enough to have a list of the meals we were going to make for the week so I actually started making a calendar for each day of the week with lunch and dinner and what we were having. This helps us stick to our plan as well as remember to get stuff ready in advance such as if we need to lay hamburger or chicken out to thaw. Something else that has really helped us it to stock up on meats when they are on sale so we always have some in the freezer, if you watch your local grocery ads you can always find a good deal then freeze it. The last piece of advice I have about meal planning is if you don’t already have a “seal a meal” or something like that get one! They are the best thing for helping freeze foods or portion out leftovers! Good luck!