Menu Planning

Save money, save time and feed the family fast with a menu plan! Menu and meal planning is easy with these tips, ideas, printables and resources for menu planning.

Ten Surprising Facts Supermarkets Won't Tell You

For most families, food budgets are relatively elastic. Compared to fixed expenses like mortgages or car loans, they're the area where you have the most choice about how much to spend each month.

Think so? Think again! Visit the supermarket, and you'll be subjected to a barrage of proven tactics, all designed to encourage over-spending.

Check out this article from MSN Health and Fitness, listing 10 Things Your Grocery Store Doesn't Want You to Know.

It'll help you wise up to the many ways the market is after your wallet.

Our favorite:

There’s nothing haphazard about the layout of your grocery store. ... Walk in the front doors and chances are you’re faced immediately with hard-to-resist items (not on your list) like fresh-cut flowers or just-baked loaves of bread. Just try walking past them en route to a carton of milk without tossing something extra into your cart. In fact, research has shown that 60 percent to 70 percent of what ends up in our carts is unplanned.

10 Things Your Grocery Store Doesn't Want You to Know


Family Dinners: Creative Solutions for Menu Planning

How do working mothers manage menus and meal planning? Working mom Leslie Kaufman's story (published in no less than the venerable New York Times) shares valuable strategies for feeding the family fast--and well.

We liked the menu planning concept of having four core dishes to save time and please picky palates:

I have four core dishes: meatloaf, pot roast, roast chicken and meatballs. I prepare the most basic, pared-down version of each dish. By now it is reflexive. I could do it in my sleep. Perhaps I have. My basic roast chicken is covered in oil and sprinkled with kosher salt and paprika, and that’s that.

Every week I make at least one of those dishes and leave it in the back of the fridge to do emergency duty, as in: “I am not eating anything stuffed with spinach. That’s disgusting.” And like a great friend, it never fails me in a crisis. It can be reheated as a meal, sliced for sandwiches, diced for a pasta sauce and used with cheese to fill a tortilla or a twice-baked potato.

Mom Puts Family On Her Meal Plan