This is the first post in our 'Weekly Meal Plan'... and I'm excited!
Admittedly, I was doing fairly well this time last year with managing our grocery budget and then, well, life. I fell off the bandwagon and couldn't seem to find my groove again. That was until, Rob and I sat down to really talk about our spending and we were faced with the reality of just how much we were doling out on food. It was scary, friends.
Bank statements don't lie and what we saw was actually astounding. We fell into a routine whereby, Rob was stopping by the grocery store nearly every day after work to pick up that night's supper (and other goodies that caught his eye). Forty dollars here and there doesn't seem like a lot, but it adds up (fast). Apart from the overspending, we also recognized that we were making our busy evenings even busier by not planning ahead. Meal plans are so helpful and take the guess work out of coming up with on the spot supper ideas; plus we find we eat better when we follow one.
So here we are. Back on the bandwagon and more committed than ever to really make a go of sticking to a budget and following a meal plan. We also very much want to share this pursuit with you all and hopefully we can work together to find some great meal ideas, eat better and save some money!
While we're not experts yet, we have found some tips from our previous attempts that we'll be implementing again.
Meal Plan & Grocery Budget Tips:
- Come up with your meal plan well in advance of the week starting. We're posting these weekly meal plans on Thursday for good reason - it allows for proper planning. I use to do my meal plan on Sundays, but found it too rushed.
- Use coupons! Seriously, they're everywhere and they can save you some great money on the staples. Printable coupons are easily obtained with a quick Google search.
- Shop according to sales. The flyers in our area come out for the week ahead on Wednesday, so I can use them as inspiration for creating my meal plans on Thursday. I always look for discounts on meat, produce and other staples. The best deals can usually be found on the front and back covers.
- Go meatless! Meat isn't necessary for every meal, nor is that even really healthy. Save money by serving one or two meatless meals per week.
- Not every supper needs to be big. Somewhere along the line a lot of us learned that supper means a big meal. Pre-planning for a lighter fare for supper once a week or so, especially on a busy night, can prevent burning through a drive-thru and spending more money.
- Make extra! You'll see with our meal plans that at least one meal per week is made bigger to provide extra for a meal either served later that week or frozen for a supper in a few weeks time.
- For our family of five, we find $150 per week is comfortable and realistic
MEAL PLAN - JUNE 18-24 2018
MONDAY - Better for you Mac and Cheese, Side Salad *
TUESDAY - Baked salmon, Fresh veggies, Brown rice
WEDNESDAY - Homemade chicken nuggets, Sweet potato fries, Carrot sticks and dip
THURSDAY - Quinoa Cilantro Taco Salad *
FRIDAY - Pulled Pork Sandwiches, Salad **
SATURDAY - Homemade pizza
SUDNAY - BBQ, veggie packs
* Vegetarian meal
** Portion to be frozen
If you have any family favourite meal recommendations, we'd love to hear them! Please share below in the comments!