Long-Term Meal Planning

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Long-Term Meal Planning

Meal planning. 
I understand it may not be for everyone. I had tried it once before and personally, found it an absolute lifesaver. 
S and I are the worst at making decisions about absolutely anything, let alone what to have for dinner. And I'm awful at skipping meals. Breakfast, nah. Lunch, only if I'm hungry. 
It's a pretty awful habit to get into and I'm determined to break it. 

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For the past 3 months, I have been trailing long-term meal planning and today, I want to share with you lovely lot, my experience so far!

Last year we attended a lot of car boots. S mainly on the hunt for video games and me, well I just went for a noisy. Until one Sunday, we were getting ready to leave and I stumbled across a box on the floor next to a stall, I noticed it had a couple of magazine's in so I quickly flicked through. Nothing instantly taking my fancy, I stood back up to leave but as I did so I heard a voice say "You can have the for a £1" I laughed, but in the back of my mind I knew that that was a pretty good bargain! So, without hesitation, I handed over a pound coin and picked up this pile of food magazines.

I must admit, I knew it was a bit of a risk not knowing whether any of the recipes would be any good. Whether they'd even still be in the magazines or not but for £1, I was willing to take the risk. S not at all convinced.

I am pleased to say I walked away with 16 food magazines that day. Mainly BBC Good Food magazines with the odd OLIVE magazine thrown in for good measure. 

Long-Term Meal Planning

If we had come across 1 new recipe in these 16 magazine's I would've been happy but we've actually discovered so many incredible meals (and delicious desserts we're yet to try), I am now always on the look out for magazines at the car boots. 

I now make it my monthly routine that on the last few days of the month, while writing our monthly shopping list, I find myself sitting down with a pen and paper flicking through my pile of magazines as well as the BBC Good Food website in search of some meal inspiration.

I find this gives me the freedom to experiment a little more in the kitchen, try meals we possibly would never have tried and it gives us a little more of a routine when it comes to dinner times. It's also a lot less stressful!  

If you've never tried meal planning before and like me, dread when it comes to meal times, I highly recommend you give it a go. Try it for a week, like we did and slowly introduce it for a longer period of time. 

I've found we've saved no end of money by only buying items of food we're 100% going to eat. Granted, it can be tricky when use before dates aren't that long but on these items pick them up at the beginning of the week when you need them. Honestly, you'll find you'll enjoy meal times a lot more by planning meals in advance.

I also recently won a #NowCookIt apron for my take on the SortedFood's #NowCookIt Build Your Own Pizza, which I blogged about recently so please be sure to go ahead and check out my blog post.

Have you ever tried meal planning? What are your thoughts? Was it a fail or a success?
Let me know in the comments below, as I'd love to hear your thoughts and if you have any questions or need advice on anything, feel free to ask away and I'll do my very best in answering!
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