How Meal Planning Can Help YOU
Are you considering meal planning for your family? Or have you stopped meal planning because of lack of time, ideas, or organizational skills? The benefits of meal planning cannot be overstated, especially for busy moms.
Meal planning can save you time and money. It can also save you the stress of the “what’s for dinner?” drama every night.
Meal planning also helps you get healthier meals on the table for your family. But it can be hard to know where and how to start. Or to stay organized enough to stick with it. This is where $5 Meal Plans can help with easy meal planning!
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How a Meal Plan Can Help Busy Moms
Meal planning is one of those great ideas I embrace with enthusiasm and then over time become disorganized and stop doing. But when I get my act together and follow through, meal planning is so worth it!
Meal Planning Saves You Money
Meal planning is a great way to save money on groceries. When you know exactly what food you plan to make you can buy only the food you need. You don’t need any “just in case” food. Or a bunch of complicated ingredients for a recipe you saw on Pinterest but will never actually make.
Groceries are so expensive. Anything that helps save money on food is worth a try. You also end up with less food waste because you aren’t throwing away expired unused ingredients for meals you didn’t make.
Meal Planning Saves Time
Dinner time is one of the most stressful times of day for many moms. I’m not talking about when you eat it. I’m talking about when you’re standing in your kitchen rifling through cupboards trying to find something, ANYTHING to make for dinner.
And by the time you figure out what to eat and actually prepare it, you’re 30 minutes past when you wanted to start eating and it’s closing in on bedtime.
Meal planning saves you a ton of time in the kitchen. When you know exactly what you’re going to make, you can plan for it. And when it’s time to cook, you can get in there and get it done.
Meal planning is a great way to make sure your family is eating a healthy dinner each night. When you have a meal planned, you can choose a balanced menu in advance. You won’t find yourself resorting to frozen convenience foods or mac & cheese from the box because you ran out of time or energy to cook.
What is $5 Meal Plans?
While I love meal planning and all its many benefits, I struggle with the follow through. Finding the time to sit down and plan out my meals sometimes just doesn’t happen. I get sick of looking for recipes or making the same ones over and over. In practice, my meal planning has frequently fallen apart. Until I found $5 Meal Plans!
$5 Meal Plans is a weekly meal plan service that does all the hard work of meal planning for you. Every week you’ll be sent a meal plan of healthy meals to prepare for your family. You’ll also get a grocery list of everything you need for your week of meals. As you might have guessed, this service comes to you for $5 per month.
And you can try the $5 Meal Plans FREE for 14 days to see what you think.
What I Loved About $5 Meal Plans
When I started $5 Meal Plans I was super excited to see they had a gluten free option because of my food intolerances. There wasn’t a dairy-free AND gluten-free option but that might have been expecting a bit much. Fortunately, I was able to adapt most of the recipes for my dairy free daughter’s needs.
The recipes are excellent! I was very impressed with the quality of recipes offered. And most can be made for around $2 per person. This was a significant savings for my family.
I loved how easy the meal plan website was to use and the recipes and grocery lists were easy to read and figure out.
It’s all good family-friendly food that even your kids will enjoy. We have some world class picky eating in my house. But even my pickiest of the picky kids were receptive to most of the recipes from $5 meal plan.
My Favorite Recipe from My Meal Plan
My first week with $5 Meal Plans there was a recipe for ribs with homemade BBQ sauce that was so good! I can’t even! I will be making that sauce for everything barbecue meat-wise from now until the end of summer. My kids even loved it. And I don’t even like ribs generally, but this recipe was amazing!
Starting Out Slow with Meal Planning
$5 Meal Plans is awesome and I have absolutely no criticisms. But for me, when I first started out, I was a little too enthusiastic. A week of brand new recipes I’d never made before to cook every night for dinner was just a bit too much for me. It was overwhelming.
Even if you hate cooking dinner (which I admit, I do) chances are you have a few easy go-to recipes you make mid-week. The things you could make blindfolded and the ingredients are always in your kitchen. Well, none of those were on my meal plan. And cooking something new every night was too much for me.
My strong recommendation is to start slow. For the first few weeks make 3 or 4 of the meal plan dinners and fill in the rest of the week with your typical family dinner recipes. You can ease into using the meal plan all week over time.
You’ll get used to the cooking style and familiar with the recipes as you try them. It won’t seem so overwhelming compared to your normal non-planned routine.
Maybe you’re the type of person who could dive right into making 7 new meals in one week. And if so, go for it! But it’s ok if you’re not. Even great things can take some easing in.