Do you meal plan? Sometimes it surprises me when I hear of people who don’t. It’s such a great way to add some organization to your life and make things easier. In fact, I’d even call it one of the best forms of self-care out there. I’ve got 5 great reasons why you need to be meal planning that I think will convince you.
5 Reasons You Need to be Meal Planning
1. It will save you time.
I hear a lot of people say that they just don’t have time to meal plan. What they don’t understand is that a little bit of time spent meal planning once a week can save you even more time each and every day. Plan out your meals for the week and you won’t have to make extra trips to the store to pick up those missing items.
You can organize your week so that you don’t even have to deal with the “what’s for dinner” question every day. Even better than that, by thinking ahead you can plan for your leftovers. Cook enough chicken on Monday so that you can have quick and easy chicken quesadillas with the leftovers on Thursday. Cut up double the amount of onions you need for dinner tonight, so you already have some ready for tomorrow.
2. It will alleviate some of the stress in your life.
Hangry children + no dinner plan = stress. Make a meal plan and eliminate that last-minute scramble. You will know just what you need to buy at the grocery store, what needs to be defrosted for the next day’s dinner, what can be prepped ahead, and what you’re going to make each day. When life throws so many curve balls at it, this gives you one area you can take control of and conquer.
Don’t know where to start? Download this FREE Weekly Meal Planner!
3. It will save you money.
Is this a familiar scenario? It’s 5 pm and the question on everyone’s lips is “What’s for dinner?” The problem is that you don’t have an answer to that question. You spend precious time searching through the fridge, freezer, and pantry for any possibilities but eventually, you give in and order takeout.
Meal planning can save you significant amounts of money. You’ll avoid takeout and eating out (unless you’ve planned for it!). You can anticipate leftovers and incorporate them into your menu plan so they don’t get shoved into the back of the fridge to become a science experiment. You can go grocery shopping with an organized list, buying only what you need. (Anyone else ever have to clean out the spoiled groceries from the fridge each week to make room for new groceries?)
4. It makes healthy eating easier.
Meal planning can eliminate the need to rely on packaged convenience foods and fast food. Because you’re working from a plan instead of winging it, you can choose more nutritious foods for you and your family. For example, are you trying to incorporate more plant-based meals into your family’s diet? Putting them into your menu plan makes it so much easier to make it happen.
5. It helps you to reduce waste.
You can greatly reduce the amount of food you’re throwing out by having a plan. Shop only for the groceries you need for your meal plan. Incorporate the use of leftovers into your plan. Your menu plan will have you using what you have because you’ve already thought ahead about what to do with it!
Meal planning may seem overwhelming at first but once you sit down to do it, you’ll soon see that it is a simple way to organize your week’s daily menus, saving time, money, and aggravation.
Need help with meal planning? Here is an amazing resource to teach you how to meal plan.
Randa Derkson is a busy mom of two, Culinary Nutrition Expert, and sick of of the overwhelm when it comes to health. She’s the head nutrition expert at RandaDerkson.com where she’s committed to making healthy living easier.