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Food: Five Top Tips for Meal Planning

top meal planning tips

If you follow me on the old socials you may have seen that I’m a bit of a planner and love a good bit of meal planning.

I honestly get slightly anxious when I can see my freezer stock is getting low, sad but true. So today I thought I’d share with you how I do my weekly meal plan and my top tips for meal planning. 

I sure do treat you guys with my content don’t I?

I tend to pick 3-4 recipes each month and batch cook them the weekend around pay day. I know I’ll need 5 meals a week minimum for lunches, but also know they’ll likely be leftovers that I can add to my stock throughout the weeks too. But I guess that's more meal prep, than meal plan...

So, without further a do, when meal planning I tend to:

Cross Reference with my week

I first look at what I have planned each week, I then write in whatever meals I’m eating out or know for a fact I’ll be eating. I then try to have a look at menus of restaurants and plan the meal I’ll be eating. This then helps me plan in meals around it. For example I may have a lighter breakfast/lunch if I know I’m having dinner out.

I also like to look at what events I have going on. So, if I’m going out and want to look my best, I try to avoid foods I know will bloat me out.

Another thing I do is look at what exercise I have planned for the week. If I know I’m going running one morning I’ll try and make sure I have some carbs the night before. I also try to plan easy to make breakfasts on mornings I know I’ll have little time etc.

My following points will help you then fill in the blanks you’re now left with after thinking of these kind of things.

Check Freezer stocks

If you’re like me and hoard a lot of food in your freezer, you may find there’s plenty in there to draw a meal plan from. Every now and again I keep a list of what is in my freezer and just grab that when I’m meal planning. However, I’m not the best at keeping up with that.

Not only may you find actual meals in your freezer, you could also see what ingredients you have that you can use up. I’m a big believer in thinking that meal planning not only helps your weight loss but also your bank balance.

Manage leftovers

Perhaps you could make a big meal on a Monday night and then portion that up and have the leftovers throughout the week. Planning for leftovers is even more common now after the whole ‘love your leftovers’ campaign. I for one know I get excited when we have a meal my brother doesn’t want as I know I can get the leftovers *insert monkey emoji here*.

If you’re the type of person that gets bored eating the same thing, just pop your leftovers in the freezer for another time. Just make sure you remember then next time you're meal planning.

 Find a common thread

Look for recipes that contain similar foods. This again will help keep the costs low, but if you’re the kind of person that doesn’t like eating the same thing, or can never fancies the meal they have planned, having a multitude of recipes that call for the same ingredients can help you become more flexible.

Instead of putting in ‘breakfast for dinner’ one night, just put ‘use up bacon’ etc.

 Reflect on previous weeks

Have you had a week that’s given you a fab loss, or made you feel like you could actually be J Law's body double? Have a flick through your meal plan and see what you were eating. Not only can you compare it to your latest meal plan and see where perhaps things are maybe going wrong, you will also have a whole meal plan already prepared.

Go on, pat your past self on the back.

Now please, let me know your top meal planning tips! 

p.s. my meal planner and shopping list are from kikki.K