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Meal Planning

Taking the time to plan meals can help you save money, get organised for the week and if you are new to planning, try out some of the tips below.

What food do you already  have?

Look in you fridge, freezer cupboards for foods you already have that can be used or need to be used up quickly.

Write down your meals

It's helpful to think ahead about what you might have for breakfast, lunch, dinner & snacks in advance. Plan for a week but if you are feeling super organised plan for 2 weeks in advance! Find new inspiration by looking up some healthy and budget meal choices. Remember to base your meal plan on foods you already have on hand, foods you enjoy and food that is on special. There are heaps of recipes online - just google or go to the Learn Cook Eat recipe page for ideas. Once you have decided  - write down the meals yo uplan to eat and use it as a guide.

Find variety

Think about eating a rainbow. If you have veggies, grains and protein in one meal, include fruit & dairy in the next.

Vary protein foods

Choose different protein foods to create a bit of variety. So if you plan to eat beef one day try tofu, chicken, seafood, beans etc on the other days.

Plan for leftovers

Prepare larger meals that you can then put in the fridge or freezer to  eat throughout the week.  Doing this can save you time and money and means you don't have to think about cooking on busy days.

How much time do you have?

Think about your weekly schedule. Choose meals that are easy to prepare if you don't have much time. Think about this when planning your weekly meals and save meals that take longer to prepare for days where you will have more time.

Make a shopping list

Once you have have decided which meals you want to prepare for for the week it's time to write a shopping list. Start by writing down al the ingredients for each meal you plan to make & cross of any ingredients you already have. Organise your list by food groups to make things easier & quicker at the supermarket. For a free meal planning & shopping template try the Learn Cook Eat meal planning & shopping list templates.

Useful resources

Not Time No Money

Weekly meal plans & shopping list based on a $55 weekly budget.

Learn Cook Eat Meal Plan

Weekly meal plan pdf template  for you to download.

Learn Cook Eat pdf template Shopping List

Shopping list pdf template for you to download

Learn Cook Eat