Meal PlanningJanuary 26, 2014
The Do’s and Don’ts
Let me paint you a pretty little picture that most of us can relate to: we come home from a long day at work, starving, to only open the fridge and have “nothing to eat.” Now, there is some food in the fridge, but it is nothing you are in the mood for. You shut the refrigerator door and open the pantry. No luck, still nothing. This goes on for a good 5 minutes. What happens next? We order something or just mindlessly snack on that bag of chips you found buried in a cabinet while you think of “what to eat.” While there is nothing wrong with ordering healthier meals from time to time, let us all get into the habit of cooking our own food (so WE can control the ingredients!) and put that hard earned dough into something more exciting, like that awesome pair of jeans you have had your eye on for months.
Do create a meal plan. Creating a weekly meal plan is my New Years resolution. Not only do I want to save money at the grocery store, but I want to broaden my cooking horizons so I am not feeding myself and my husband chicken and vegetables every single night (trust me, it gets old quick). Every Sunday morning I sit down and create 3-4 meals that I will cook. The other nights of the week will be “leftover” nights. Not all people enjoy leftovers, and if you fall into this category, create a larger plan. So far this plan has been successful. I am so proud!
Do weekly food preps. Prepping your food is key. Following your grocery store run, organize your ingredients and get chopping. Chopping vegetables prior is not only is a huge time saver during the week, but if you are hungry for a snack, you have everything ready to nosh on. So, put down the greasy chips. I used to hit the grocery store almost everyday picking up dinner. I had to deal with the crazy after work rush and it was just straight up annoying.
Buy a crock pot, now. I mean it. Stop reading this and go! Crock pot meals are my favorite. Why? You dump all of the ingredients in the pot and just push start. At the end of the day, dinner is ready! Crock pots are no longer just for cooking stews, my friends. You can find hundreds of healthy crock pot recipes online! If you double the recipe, you can freeze some and take it out when you have a craving for it the following week.
I hope these little tips will encourage you girls and guys to get in the kitchen. Spending the money and your time prepping meals will most likely get you to stick with that plan (there is nothing worse than chucking veggies that have gone bad…goodbye hard earned cash). You will consume much healthier foods than what you will find at any restaurant as well. Give it a try! Oh, and don’t keep any recipes you find a secret!