Hello MEAL PREP! // Happy Planner® SQUAD member, Gretchen (@planfortomorreaux), is showing us how she uses her Happy Planner® to limit food waste, save money and PLAN! ✨
"One common meal planning misconception is that you should select what you want to cook then go to the store to get your ingredients. The best way to save money and reduce food waste is to follow the Shelf Cooking method. Use what you already have as your base for meal planning, and save on your grocery bill.
+Start by taking an inventory of what’s in your pantry, fridge, and freezer. Write it all down on some Happy Planner®️ Fill Paper, or in your Happy NOTES™. I like to *try* to keep them in categories like protein, carbs, produce, etc. +What needs to be used up before it expires? Is there a way to breathe new life into leftovers? How can I sneak vegetables into this without my kids noticing?
+If you’re creative-culinary-stumped, use websites to enter a few ingredients and see what recipes come up. I’ll bet you can plan at least one meal (doesn’t have to be a three course gourmet option!). Some of my favorite new meals have come about this way. If you truly don’t have enough to make a full meal, look to what’s on sale at your favorite grocery store to fill in any gaps. +Plan what you’ll be eating each night, or at least which meals you’ll be having this week or until you have to stop at the store again. Don’t forget about date nights or other evenings when dinner won’t be at home. The meal plan half sheets are perfect for this! Whether on your fridge or popped into your planner, seeing the plan in writing will help you stick to it and avoid forgetting to defrost key ingredients or turning on a slow cooker or pressure cooker. I like to secure my meal planning sheet to the fridge using a planner magnet bookmark so that it travels easily from fridge to planner."