Friday, May 13, 2016

Sort of Meal Planning

I'm one of those people who loves to plan. I've been wanting to try out meal planning,  for years, really. What it means is you decide all the meals you are going to eat for the next week (or month, if you are hardcore). You know, Monday: risotto, Tuesday: lasagna etc. (and maybe you make two hot meals a day, and good for you! I just manage to make one.) And then do a big shop for all the necessary ingredients. 

There are a lot of benefits. You know what you are going to eat, so you can plan accordingly and have the ingredients ready. You'll save money by making food from scratch. You'll reduce food waste by only buying what you need. 

Sounds good, right? My biggest obstacle has been... Jake. He does not like the idea of planning a weeks meals in advance. He's one of those people who wants to eat only what he feels like eating right at that moment. He can't even say what he wants tomorrow let alone next week. He usually knows what he wants a few hours before it's time to eat. It's kind of infuriating. Just a little bit. Tiny bit. Grr.

But I finally figured out a meal planning system that works for us! A sort of meal planning, anyway.

I made a list of meals we both love (and that I can make well). It's not many frankly.
Here's the list.
These might sound absolutely crazy, but I did my best to translate: meatballs + spaghetti, potatoes +  minced meat gravy, salmon + mashed potatoes, fish sticks + mashed potatoes + sour cream dip, macaroni casserole, lasagna, chicken curry sauce + rice, minced meat soup, minced meat and mashed potato casserole.
So all the meals are sort of decided and I just have to make sure we have ingredients for all of those. As much as possible. The non-perishable ones anyway. If Jake wants salmon and I don't feel like going to the store, he can go his own durn self. Grr. Ahem.

But it's been working great! We have home cooked meals everyday without added stress for me! Each day Jake picks out a meal from our "menu" and I make it. Also, because I know what all the meals require, if for example minced meat is on sale I can stock our freezer up, instead of having to run to the store to pick one up on full price. And if we have leftovers we eat those the next day. Jake is for some reason dead against freezing leftovers to eat later, but he thankfully is OK with eating the same food a few days a row. It's like living with a little kid really, hah.

I should point out that I only make meals during the week, Jake is in charge of them on the weekends. Which mostly means takeaway, but I'm fine with that.

So anyway, if you'd like to try out meal planning, but aren't ready for the full on everything-decided-for-a-week version, give this "lite" one a try. It's been working great for us!

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