03 December 2014
There is a lot more to meal planning than we think. It takes a lot of organisation, creativity and commitment to actively source, prepare and cook daily meals on an ongoing basis. A few action points here and there can help you take giant strides into making your weekly meals a seamless process. After all, mealtimes should be an enjoyable time of day when the whole family can have fun and enjoy food, including parents. Here we have listed 10 key points to set you on your way.
1. Make a scrapbook of your favourite recipes
First things first, jot down all of your favourite recipes including ones the kids love, you love and those that are easy to make. Here's some recipes to help!
2. Look for more recipes
Add new ideas and recipes to the ones you already know. Look for inspiration in newspapers, magazines and online.
3. Keep it simple
If you struggle to keep on top of your weekly mealtimes, take things back to basics. Stick to recipes that are manageable and well within your skillsets as a home cook.
4. Use seasonal ingredients
Using seasonal ingredients will not only keep costs down when it comes to buying healthy produce, but it will also give you natural inspiration for mealtimes as the seasons change.
5. Create a calendar or write it down
Writing your ideas and weekly plans on paper will help you stick to them. You could even take it one step further and create and print out your own food calendar for the whole family.
6. Theme your mealtimes
An easy way to spice up your family dinners is to theme them to a country or style of cuisine. You’ll be surprised by how much you know when it comes to foods around the world!
7. Maintain a routine
The best way to improve your planning skills is to commit to plan and stick to it. The more familiar you become with your routine, the easier it will be to manage.
8. Seek out the sales
Taking advantage of foods on sale during your weekly shop can help you plan future food weeks and save you money. If something is on value, snap it up and plan around it.
9. Prepare for leftovers
If you’re making food which is easy to scale up, make more than you need and freeze any leftovers for future meals. See it as preparing for emergency mealtimes when you’re short of time.
10. Check the fridge and freezer
Before you do anything, check your fridge and freezer and know exactly how much of what you have stocked up. This will give you an understanding of what needs using up, and what you need to buy.