Of course, you wouldn’t be here reading this post if planning healthy meals (especially wholesome school lunches) wasn’t part of your back-to-school agenda! The fact is, meal planning is a wonderful strategy to help families enjoy healthy, home-cooked meals with the awesome added benefits of saving time, money, and stress! So, by learning how to create a weekly meal plan, you’ll not only ensure that your family eats healthier and saves money, but it will also save you time and stress as well.
Shown above is what’s on the menu at The Nourishing Home for our first week back-to-school. So without further ado, here are the top five tips I share at each of my meal planning seminars. The first step in meal planning is to make a Master List of Meals, which is simply a list of all the meals that you make. As you start trying new recipes, remember to add the ones your family likes to your Master List of Meals.
Before you start selecting meals for the week ahead, first take a look at what’s happening each day, and plan your meals accordingly.
For extra-busy days, schedule a “leftovers night,” where you can simply warm up a meal from a previous evening. First, check your pantry and frig to see what you already have on hand, and be sure to plan for meals that utilize these ingredients.
Even planning a few meals a week, or planning meals for just the busiest days of the week, will go a long way in helping you stay on track with your healthy-eating goals and budget, as well as save you time and stress! Make your meal plan for the week, and then go through each meal and list out all the ingredients needed to create that meal. Keep a pad of paper on your kitchen counter, and jot down items as you run out of them so they can quickly and easily be added to The List. Just an hour or two over the weekend can go a long way in making things quicker and easier for you during the week ahead! Meats: Cut and divide meat into portions based on your meal plan, and freeze (you can even place the meat into a marinade and freeze). Brown extra ground turkey, chicken, or beef, to use in another dish, such as tacos, later in the week. Cook extra chicken breasts, and then cut some up for another meal such as stir-fry or pasta dishes. Cook extra rice, put it into a container, and refrigerate or freeze for use as a quick side dish with a future meal.
For more healthy meal planning strategies, as well as free weekly whole food meal plans, visit The Nourishing Home.
Kelly Smith loves the Lord, her family, and sharing her passion for real food cooking and meal planning with others.
Filed Under: Making Changes, MOM tips, MOMables · Tagged With: mealplanning, MOMables · Post Copyright Property of MOMables Recipe by MOMables uploaded by MOMablesSubscribe now! This is a terrific idea, fits for me because I always have a hard time on preparing meals for my kids. I love these tips, personally its a nightmare when the kids go back to school so meal planning and using these tips have helped me so much. E-Mails once a weekSample meal plan, free recipes, and all the tips you need to make school lunches and meals easier.We respect your privacy. As women striving to serve the Lord and our families better, meal planning is a wonderful strategy to help us provide a healthy, home-cooked meal with the awesome added benefit of saving time, money and stress!
I also provide all-inclusive full meal planning kits for FREE to subscribers of The Nourishing Home. Whole30 Meal Plans: Taking the Whole30 Challenge? Be sure to download my free 5-week Whole30 Meal Plans. In addition, I’d like to provide you with a free meal planning template perfect for creating your own weekly meal plans. All content (recipes, photos, text, etc.) on this site is the creative property of Kelly Smith of The Nourishing Home.
So that’s where MOMables and I come in: We want to show you how easy and beneficial it is to incorporate meal planning into your weekly routine.
Meals prepared at home generally contain a greater variety of nutrient-rich foods compared with those found at typical restaurants.
That’s because once you make your meal plan and purchase the ingredients needed for each of the meals outlined, you can then go on auto-pilot. Simply execute the meal plan day-by-day without having to stress over what’s for dinner and without having to make multiple trips to the market. You can find each of the recipes listed (as well as my free meal planning template) by visiting Healthy Back-to-School Menu.
You can also find this information in more detail, as well as my popular “Cook Once, East Twice or More” tips, over at Mastering Meal Planning. Taking time to really think through this first step will save you a ton of time in the long run; no more racking your brain to try to think of what you should make for the week. Use ground meat to mix and form into meatballs and burgers that can be frozen for later use. For example, I find it super-helpful to pre-chop, rinse, and store lettuce for salads for the week ahead.
Grate cheese, make salad dressings or sauces, etc., and store them in the fridge or freezer. When making out your meal plan, consider which dinners lend themselves to also being a great lunch. Children need a healthy balance of protein, carbs, and fats for sustained energy and optimal learning.
She is the author and creator of The Nourishing Home—a blog dedicated to sharing delicious whole food recipes, cooking tips and techniques, and overall encouragement to help others in their quest to live a more nourished life. Your information will not be shared with any third party and you can unsubscribe at any timeWant MORE Ideas Like this one?
Each GF Meal Plan Kit includes the weekly meal plan, PLUS a handy shopping list and helpful prep ahead task recommendations to make getting a healthy meal on the table a snap! My heart in creating this blog is to help you by sharing helpful meal planning strategies and nourishing GF recipes that are healthy, easy and delicious with thanksgiving to God! You are welcome to share a photo via social media, as long as it contains a link back to the corresponding recipe from this site.
A healthy diet is a crucial part of an overall healthy, balanced lifestyle, and over the past few years, there has been a serious shift toward focusing on internal health, rather than dieting to try to lose weight or achieve a certain look.
Kelly is a master meal planner, and today she shows us how to incorporate some of our recipes into a weekly plan.
Yet, with this same amount of money, you can actually feed your family three highly nutritious whole food meals, plus healthy snacks! Instead, start with planning just a few meals each week, or planning meals only on the busiest days of the week.
I also like to precook and freeze ground meat for use in meals such as tacos, chili, soups, etc. And rather than just serving the same thing for lunch, think of ways to repurpose your leftovers, such as turning leftover grilled chicken breasts into Greek salad wraps. Foods such as whole grains, brown rice, fruits, and veggies provide a good source of healthy carbohydrates, while Greek yogurt, cheese, eggs, meats, and beans provide much-needed protein.
Remember, you don’t have to go it alone; there are lots of helpful resources out there for breaking free from the same-old, same-old lunches. However, it is important to do your research and familiarize with research from different nutritionists, doctors, and health experts. And once you see how easy and beneficial meal planning truly is, you’ll most certainly be inspired to add even more meals to your weekly meal plan! And, the healthy fats found in nuts, meats, avocados, and whole-milk dairy products help satisfy and maintain stamina. Take a few minutes each week to go online with your kids and seek out some new ideas to make lunch not only healthy, but fun! And congrats on being a MOMables subscriber – Laura provides a wealth of recipes and ideas that I know will really be a blessing to you as well.
Additionally, please refrain from adapting recipes without properly linking back to the original recipe, and keep in mind that simple substitutions do not constitute an adapted or original recipe.
By relying on information that you were taught as a child, or by only following the instruction of one doctor, you might be missing out on valuable information. That’s why providing children a balance and variety of these foods will help ensure that they’re well-nourished and energized to learn.
Yogurt, milk, juice, breakfast cereal, and other products that are advertised as having extra added Omega 3s, Vitamin C, Calcium, or antioxidants are popular choices among people who want to eat only healthy foods and meals.
For example, drinking orange juice that has extra added calcium might seem like a great way to achieve your recommended calcium intake; however the calcium that is added to orange juice isn’t always the type or strength you need, and orange juice does not make it easy for your body to absorb. Most vitamins and minerals have specific foods or other nutrients that need to be taken with them in order for optimum absorption, so throwing added nutrients into everything usually isn’t very effective.
It’s just messing with nature.Natural Food for Better HealthIf you really want to eat healthy foods and meals, your best bet is to eat natural, unprocessed food.
If vitamins and minerals are what you seek, it’s best to get them from their natural sources, rather than as supplements tacked on to other processed foods. Vitamins and minerals in their natural forms (in the foods they naturally occur in) are made to be easier to absorb, so they will be more effective and have a better and more positive impact o your body and overall health. Take some time to learn about what combinations of foods are the most powerful and will benefit your body the most, and plan your meals accordingly. There aren’t heavy legal restrictions on what can be classified as organic, and many brands will use the organic label simply to sell their products, even if they don’t quite fit the organic description.
You should always do a little research on the brands you are interested in buying to decide if they really are free of chemical pesticides, genetic modification, and other potentially harmful procedures. You might also want to look at the organic regulations in your area to determine just how easy it is for companies to earn that designation for their products.If you aren’t certain that the produce you are buying actually lives up to its organic title, there is a simple solution to ensure that you are getting the wholesome, organic food that you need: grow it yourself! If you have space for a garden, you should take advantage of it and try growing your own vegetables. You’ll know where they came from and will feel more comfortable eating them, and will be saving money and trips to the grocery store as well.Eating healthy foods and meals is a noble goal, but if you are not careful, you can easily be fooled into eating things that aren’t the best for your health.
Chief editor and author at LERAblog, writing useful articles and HOW TOs on various topics. Particularly interested in topics such as Internet, advertising, SEO, web development and business.Do you like this post?
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