Do you struggle to follow your monthly meal plan? Have you discovered the process just doesn’t work for you? Know something? You’re not alone! Monthly meal planning added so much stress to my life, I finally threw out the entire system. Today, I’m so glad I did! Giving up helped me discover something that worked better. Because I gave up, I learn how to create a daily meal plan.
How It All Began
After throwing out my monthly meal plan, I felt free! The kitchen once again became my happy place. Creativity started flowing and I was enjoying cooking once again. It was going well!
But then, things started lagging. I found myself asking the “what are we going to eat?” question again. I hated this! The more I thought about my monthly meal plan, the more I realized it hadn’t been all bad. It was just too much of a good thing.
What would happen if I planned on a smaller scale? If I chose my meals the morning of? Or even the night before? Instead of wasting time, flipping through cookbooks and being tempted by luxurious spreads, what if I started putting together a collection of wholesome recipes my man and I love?
Simple, hearty meals that required basic ingredients we always have on hand.
I gave it my best shot and discovered something wonderful!
A New (or is it the old?) Way of Meal Planning!
Even though it seemed too simple, the results spoke for themselves. This plan worked! I don’t even think about food anymore!
Kidding! I do think about food. Particularly so, when I fail to follow my own advice and once again find myself asking the uncomfortable “what’s for dinner” question! Yes, it happens to me too! I’m not Betty Crocker; I’m just a woman who tries to live well and sometimes finds herself overwhelmed by all that life throws her way!
I shouldn’t have been surprised that daily meal planning worked for me and my kitchen. As I thought about it, I realized this is how my mother cooked, as did her mother before her! It’s nothing new. In fact, it’s the old fashioned way of meal planning.
How to Create a Daily Meal Plan
Daily meal planning takes work on the front end. But it’s worth it. So worth it! I’m going to walk you through the process, step by step.
Find An Efficient Way to Store Recipes
The first step is to come up with an efficient way of storing your go-to recipes. Some women (my hand is raised) remember their mother using a recipe box and are drawn to the idea. There are many lovely options available on Amazon and this is the one I personally drool over.
Perhaps you like the idea of flipping through a handy little recipe card binder? If so, check out the lovely options Meadowsweet Kitchens offer. Are you a techie homemaker who likes to read from a screen? Go for it!
Create sections for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And snacks, if needed!
Collect Recipes You Love and Use
Next up? Start collecting recipes you and your family love. Don’t feel pressured to rush this part of the process. As you continue to discover new favorites, add them to the mix and slowly build your collection!
Also make a list of meals you don’t need a recipe for. Like breakfasts! Make a list of easy go-to’s, like toast and eggs, porridge, yogurt and granola, cereal, smoothie, etc.
Start Simple Meal Planning
Finally, start using your collection! And do what works for you. Whether you plan the night before or the morning of, following this simple routine will help you move away from the “what are we going to eat for dinner” rush!
If you’re struggling with meal planning, give this system a try! It’s the only thing that has worked well for me, the only thing that has been sustainable, long term!
What do you think? Would this method eliminate stress and simplify the planning process?
I want to try this. I know very well one of my drains is not having anything planned for supper until the very last minute. It nags me all day and makes me crazy. But neither do i do well with big two week meal plans. To lazy for that. And like i want my kitchen to be my creative place. So thank you. And i love your blog btw. Honest and real and fun keep it up.