Monday, November 5, 2012

Monthly Meal Planning: November

At the end of September I wrote about how I'm meal planning on a monthly basis now, to save money, save time, and be healthier.

I'm on my third month of meal planning this way, and November was definitely the easiest. I started the process half-way through October and it felt more organized and stream-lined. It's still a lengthy process, but I think it will continue to get easier each month.

Here are the steps involved in my Monthly Meal Planning Process:

1. Enter meals into my calendar.

2. Go through meal-by-meal and make a list of all the ingredients I need for each meal. (This will turn into the master grocery list.)

3. Write down things we need for breakfasts and lunches (I only meal plan for dinner)

3. Cross-check the grocery list with what I already have in the cupboard and freezer.

4.  Go through my coupons and pull out any that correspond to items on my list.

5. Organize the list based on what I'll by at each store. (Since i'm on my third month, I have a general idea of which store offers the best prices for different things.)

6. Spend one day going to three different stores and buy everything that is either non-perishable, can be stored in the freezer or will last the entire month. (I highly recommend doing this without children in tow! I've convinced Dan to take one Thursday morning off each month. I drop Stephanie at school and spend the entire 2.5 hours getting our shopping done.)

I now have all of our food for the month, except for fresh fruits/veggies, yogurt and milk. I'll be buying those things on a weekly basis, and am hoping to keep those weekly trips to $25 or less.

And now the good part:

November Meal Plan

1. Meatloaf, baked sweet potatoes and peas.
2. Crock-Pot Sausage and Peppers over egg noodles
3. Eating out
4. Homemade calzones
5. Leftovers from the past 4 meals
6. Barbeque Chicken
7. Pasta & Homemade Sauce
8. Tuna sandwiches, pickles and celery sticks
9. Tacos
10. Ham, baked beans, greenbeans, cranberry sauce
11. Leftovers
12. Chicken Pot-Pie
13. Macaroni & Cheese, carrot sticks
14. Crock-Pot Hawaiian Barbeque Chicken, rice, broccoli
15. Soup & crescent rolls
16. Rotisserie Chicken, cranberry sauce, green beans, stuffing (I didn't realize how chicken-filled this week was until just now. Oops!)
17. Pasta and Sauce
18. Crock-Pot Beef & Broccoli
19. Breaded Pork Chops, applesauce, corn
20. Waffles & fruit
21. Leftovers
22. Thanksgiving (We'll be in NY with Dan's family)
23. New York
24. New York
25. English Muffin Pizzas
26. Chili
27. Macaroni & Cheese (Dan isn't home on Tuesday nights, hence the "kid food" you'll notice each week.)
28. Chicken Pot Pie
29. Crock-Pot tortellini stew
30. Lemon Pepper Pork

*Let me know if there's any meals you're interested in seeing recipes for! And if you have any simple, easy meals you'd like to share, I'll be thinking about December before you know it.


  1. This is going to be my New Year's Resolution.

  2. I wish I could be that dedicated and organized. It makes so much sense.

  3. I love this Megan because I need new ideas! Thanks!!!

  4. I REALLY need to do this! Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. I really need to start doing this! I go week by week, but it's always last minute (like ten minutes before I leave for the store!)

  6. I've been saying I'm going to do this forever! Everyone I know who does it absolutely swears by it. I like how you break down the steps, it makes it seem much more manageable. I'll have to give it a go!

  7. I can't commit to a month, but I still do the weekly meal planning. My hubby refuses to eat frozen meat too, so that has somethign to do with it!


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