My Secret Weapon for Meal Planning + Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps Recipe

Back to School is crazy enough without having to worry about what's for dinner. Even though I've gotten pretty good at creating a weekly meal plan, for the past few months I have been "cheating" with Emeals to plan my weekly dinners. Emeals has a variety of weekly recipe plans, depending on your preferences.  Plans include Clean Eating, Paleo, Low Fat, Low Carb, Natural & Organic, Portion Control, Gluten Free, Classic, and Vegetarian … [Read more...]

Meal Planning Freebies

You can get a one-week free trial from Meals by the Week right now. Even if you only do the one week, you may get some nice meal planning tips and recipes that will be helpful. You can choose from lots of different options like Vegetarian and low-calorie meal plans, and the plans include shopping lists and deals from stores like Trader Joe's and Sprouts. Need more meal planning help? Try: Huge list of Pantry Meals My Pantry Staples … [Read more...]

My Once a Month Grocery Shopping and Frugal Meal Planning Experiment

When I decided a week and a half ago to try  monthly shopping/meal planning, I didn't realize Hurricane Sandy was coming, but now that I know I'm SO glad I stocked up last week on food for the whole month. When people ask me for my #1 grocery money saving tip, I always say the same thing: Frugal Meal Planning. In fact, I even have a fancy frugal meal planner you can download for free. But even I get lazy, and the fact that I had to plan … [Read more...]

Meal Planning Help: Ready Set Eat!

Here's another great meal planning resource -- and I know I can use all the help I can get! Ready Set Eat has quick and easy ideas for every night of the week. I love that Ready Set Eat is giving me new recipe inspiration using simple, healthy ingredients all the time. It's definitely worth checking out. You can read more about how I meal plan, including free printable planners, here. … [Read more...]

Menu Plan Monday and Easy Summer Meals

You may have noticed that since the summer officially started, I haven't been posting menu plans as much. I'm still doing a rough plan (using my printable planners) but they're much more flexible, and based a lot on what meat is on clearance at Wegmans with a coupon and what we get in our CSA basket. But most meals involve some combination of the following: Grilled meat -- chicken, poultry sausage, or burgers with our local organic … [Read more...]

Food on the Table – Free Meal Planning for Life!

Food on the Table is an awesome meal planning service helps you to find thousands of easy, healthy recipes; save money by knowing the items that are on sale; and  simplify your shopping experience with a well organized grocery list. For a limited time, you can sign up for an unlimited lifetime membership – completely FREE!  Normally, you are only allowed 3 meals per week free, but with this lifetime unlimited membership, you’ll get to plan … [Read more...]

Meal Planning 101: Giant List of Pantry Meal Ideas

If you have a decently stocked pantry, with all the pantry staples I have on my Pantry Staples list,  these are all meals you can make without  a trip to the store! Here are my 17 favorite easy pantry meals: Veggie Mac & Cheese Slow Cooker Enchiladas Goulash Pasta & Meat Sauce Chicken Taco Soup Vegetable Stir Fry Spaghetti Bolognese Vegetable Meat Loaf Sloppy Joes Slow Cooker Chicken Chili Beans and Rice Chana … [Read more...]

Menu Plan Monday!

I had a great trip to the Public Market on Saturday, so I'm planning most of my meals around that. Don't forget to get your FREE printable Meal Planner (pictured above)! Monday: Veggie Meatloaf w/ homemade rolls Tuesday: Grilled Chicken with avocado salad and quinoa Wednesday: Beef with Broccoli Stir Fry and sticky rice Thursday: Grilled chicken with green beans Friday: Applegate Farms hot dogs and Cascadian Farms Tater Tots with carrot and … [Read more...]

Frugal Meal Planning Printable!

Ready to start meal planning? Download this printable Frugal Meal Planning tool for FREE! Just print it out, use the tools you've learned through my frugal Meal Planning 101 series, and post it on your refrigerator every week! If you're looking for meal planning inspiration, make sure to see my HUGE list of pantry meal ideas! Don’t forget to read the other articles in this series: Shop Your Pantry How to Save Money on Pantry Staples + … [Read more...]

Meal Planning 101- Step Three: Shop Your Pantry

Are you interested in saving money on your next grocery bill? Then you need to take a look at your pantry and ask yourself this essential question: what meals can you create out of ingredients you already have on hand? Do you have pasta, a bag of frozen veggies, milk, and cheese? Make an improvised veggie mac and cheese using homemade cheese sauce. Have some beans (any kind), cheese, tomato sauce, and corn or peppers? Add some spices, … [Read more...]

Meal Planning 101 – Step Two: How to Save Money on Pantry Staples

Meal planning saves money and time. One of my key strategies is to "shop your pantry" for meal ideas. But in order for it to work, you have to have a moderate supply of pantry staples built up. Pantry staples are basic, whole food items that cold be included in a variety of meals. Pantry Staples can also be bought in bulk to save money. You can download this free, printable list of what I consider to be essential staples to have on hand all … [Read more...]

Meal Planning 101: Part 1 – Why Even Try?

Nothing -- but nothing -- is more infuriating to me than hearing this question from my husband, usually around 4:30 pm: "So, what are you thinking about for dinner?" Just So.Many.Levels. of wrong. Of course, I generally retort, "I don't know, what are you making." But that's probably not the best thing to say. :) In all seriousness, aside from making your evenings free of marital discord, meal planning is the Number One tip I give people … [Read more...]