The best advice I have ever followed with menu planning is this: Keep It Simple! Because you are going to be planning in advance, it is tempting to try and add in meals or side dishes that take a lot of prep time.
Make sure when you begin to plan your menus that you know which meals you will be planning. Are you going to plan for all 3 meals everyday or are you going to just plan for dinners?
For our family I only plan our dinners. We always cook enough food at dinner time so that we have enough food left over for lunches the next day. For breakfast we are on our own – sometimes we’ll have toast, my husband loves eggs of any kind, and sometimes I’ll opt for a simple smoothie. This keeps things incredibly simple and works really well for our family. However, your family may be different and need the structure of planning our breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Do whatever works best for your family during this season of your lives!
You will also want to take a look at your schedule when planning your menu as well. If you have a meeting that goes from 5-8 p.m. that probably isn’t the night you want to make a time consuming meal. Go with a simple meal for that instead – sandwiches, tacos, or grilled chicken. Or, better yet, plan ahead for a meal in the slow cooker!
Keeping your meals simple does not meal that you are not a good cook or that you are unimaginative. I work from home and there are nights we eat sandwiches and fruit for dinner! Planning your meals allows you the freedom to choose what you will be eating and which nights those meals would be best based upon your family’s schedule and needs.
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