Meal Planning is one of the highlights of my week. Yes, I realize that that might just qualify me for the Loony Bin. I know you guys already think I’m off my rocker, so I might as well give you some more fodder, right? I really, REALLY love meal planning. Everything about it just tickles me pink: the organization, the time it saves me, the paper I can spread around, the stuff I can mark off daily. Oooooooh, I’m just giddy! Highlighter anyone?
I’ve already written a good bit about meal planning…it was one of the first subjects I ever tackled 3+ years ago here at SMC and I always covered it in my Frugal Living Workshops (last one available online to watch for free). I’ve given you a few options for meal planning, I’ve told you how to plan based on sales and in season items, I’ve told you about the way I meal plan with Plan to Eat, and I’ve even shared a video walk through about how to use PTE for your meals.
We are actually working toward a feature at Humorous Homemaking where I can share my weekly meals with you all, links and recipes included. Until that’s ready, I thought we could talk about meal planning again through today’s post – because I like to talk about meal planning. And if you don’t, sorry Charlie…go fiddle around on Pinterest instead.
I know a lot of you already follow me on Pinterest – and if you don’t, you should consider it. I hate to toot my own horn, but my boards are pretty stinkin’ awesome…because I work on them daily. Does that make me a Pinterest addict? Well, probably. But I like to tell myself that it’s better than being addicted to something like Candy Crush Saga (I don’t even know what that is) or Days of Our Lives…or drugs.
I get emails from you guys all the time about my pins – I see you’re making the meals I pin when I ask on Facebook what you’re having for dinner. It tickles me pink you’re using that resource! 🙂 🙂 🙂 <– tickled pink face
BUT, you want to know how I’m using my pins and keeping track of them? Good question – I’m going to clear that up today and give you a walk through on how I use Pinterest for meal planning. It’s really quite simple – because at this point in life, I NEED simple…I get to take care of the restless natives all day, and they don’t go for complex.
How I Meal Plan With Pinterest:
I find recipes that look delicious and I pin them.
These come from lots of different places: Pinterest itself, blogs I read, recipes people send me, blog hops, Facebook, my recipes (narcissistic?), Plan to Eat recipes. Even with my addiction to paper, I still pin things. But I DO print them later. 😉 When I pin recipes, I usually make notes in the comments – especially Trim Healthy Mama notes.
I sit down and use Plan to Eat to make my meal plan.
I look through my pins and my past meal plans and decide what we want to eat for the week based on what’s hanging around the house and about to mold and what we’ll be doing as far as plans go. I plug what I want into Plan to Eat.
Once something goes into my Plan to Eat file, I delete it from Pinterest.
I realize that might drive some of you bananas, but that’s how I keep track of things. I don’t want to leave recipes in Pinterest if I’ve already made them. So, out of the Pinterest file and into my Plan to Eat file. You can follow me on Plan to Eat to see my recipes there (my username is Humorous Homemaking). So, if a recipe is on Pinterest, I haven’t made it yet…if it’s in Plan to Eat, I did. Clear as mud?
If I make a recipe and we hate it, I delete it from Plan to Eat. If it’s yummy, it stays there for future reference.
If it was grody, the recipe just sadly went the way of the dinosaur. If we won’t eat it and Dottie (the dog) runs away, it’s likely not a repeat. Think: Shrimp Pot Pie – epic failure.
When I print my PTE menu, I also print the recipes that go with it.
See! I told you!!! PAPER! Woooohooooo!!! I love paper. 🙂 If, after trying it, the recipe is a keeper and something we LOVE, that printed paper goes into a nice, beautiful page protector and I put it in my Favorite Recipes binder. If we liked it, but it didn’t knock our socks off, it just stays in PTE for later.
Aside from Pinterest, I also use my Favorite Recipes binder, my Trim Healthy Mama book, and my cookbook stash to plan meals…but Pinterest is the most effective.
So, how’s that for easy? Pinterest is really so great for planning meals. You can search for what you’re looking for and read reviews in the comments. “Do not make this…it tastes like molded cardboard.” Or even better: “Make this right now while your husband is at work so you don’t have to share and tell your 4 year old she won’t like it because it’s ‘hot’.”
If you haven’t made the leap into Pinterest, I highly recommend it. It’s a fabulous FREE resource and you can do so much with it…like organization. I love organization. It’s my fave…could someone please relay that message to my 4 year old? She doesn’t love it as much as me. Thank you.
Follow me on Pinterest – everybody’s doing it…better than jumping off a bridge.