One of the first pieces of advice you will hear if you are looking for ways to save money on food is to create a meal plan. In other words, meal planning is a simple and effective way to change how you cook and feed your family in order to lower the overall cost of food. You can save a lot more money by planning your meals. It takes the stress off your shoulders every day and helps you live a better life.

When we are planning a trip to the grocery store we make a general menu plan for the week. We are completely flexible on how we go about using each planned meal and each morning, while filling in our productivity planning sheet we decide what we will eat for the day. 

How meal planning can save you money

When you plan your meals, you ensure that you use up the food in your home, you take advantage of sales to create meals, and you can avoid unplanned fast food trips when you are just too tired to worry about dinner.

Making a grocery list with meal planning can help you stick to it. Stopping impulse purchases at the grocery store is the best way to avoid them. You may end up spending more than planned on groceries without realizing it if you don’t stick to a list.

Having a meal plan can help you cut your food budget when you need to. A great way to put meal planning to use is to build a stockpile you can pull from when money is tight.

Meal planning basics to save you money.

Plan meals that are easy to cook. 

This means that they are easy in general, or meals you can prepare ahead of time, reducing the amount of time it takes to prepare them when the time comes. There are many freezer recipes that can be used to make easy meal preparations, especially when you don’t feel like cooking and don’t want to go to the drive-through.

Plan meals around what you have in the house. 

Leftovers going bad are a costly waste that quickly adds up. You can reduce your family’s overall food costs while reducing waste when you plan your meals to use up these foods before they go bad. Utilizing what you have lying around your house as you plan meals will ensure your stockpile is always rotating.

Plan meals around the sale circulars. 

Meal planning can help you take advantage of sales, especially during your local weekly sales, rather than spending full price on food. This is a great way to save money on your everyday grocery budget. I like to take a peek at next weeks Aldi sale so I can start thinking about things I want to try. 

Adding favorite foods to your menu often 

When you add regular family favorites to your menu, you can stock up on items you use often when they go on sale, which will help lower your grocery bill. When you build a stockpile, you can buy items on sale and then use them later when you want to add them to your menu but the foods are not on sale at that time.

Leaving wiggle room 

Making meal planning less stressful by planning meals but not necessarily the day you will eat them is a great way to help make it a little less daunting. During each day, allow yourself to rotate meals you plan and prepare to meet the tastes of your family.

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