I’m gonna shoot you straight. Meal planning used to stress me out. I have always loved cooking and trying new recipes, but then I got married and I had to do it on a budget AND learn to cook for a husband who eats like 4 people. (When he would come home from college his mom would make him his own casserole dish of food guys. HIS OWN CASSEROLE DISH.)
After failing a handful of times and going over budget, I quickly learned meals that worked for us. Ones that stretch across multiple meals, the ones we enjoyed, the ones where we said “definitely won’t make this again” and the ones we run to when we are nearing the end of our grocery bill. It’s been like a fun game I’ve played for the past four years.
I realize that meal planning and grocery shopping isn’t fun for everyone. Maybe you have a tighter budget. Maybe your family has special dietary needs. Maybe you just get overwhelmed at the thought of the organization and shopping…if so I want to be a resource for you to feel confident in this area! I’ve seen it bless our family so much financially by setting good realistic boundaries on our grocery budget and planning our weeks out.
That being said, I’ve made a 5 Dinner Meal Plan for you all complete with itemized grocery list and recipes. The meals I chose are ones that my family loves and we go to time and time again. They aren’t “rice and beans” meals, like Dave Ramsey calls them but they are affordable and should leave you with leftovers as well!
Becs and I have always just wanted this to be a place of learning and we hope that this blesses you and gives you some guidance as to how stress free your weeks can be when you take the time to get organized and make a plan!
A few facts:
- This meal plan is meant to feed a family of four.
- All you have to do is print off the PDF here, and you’ll get an itemized grocery list, tentative calendar and all your recipes!
- They are minimal effort recipes and you don’t have to love cooking to pull them off.
- Keep in mind, if you have a family smaller than 4, you will most likely have leftovers which just means more meals that are already cooked in your fridge!
- I LOVE budgeting. So I nerded out and added the grocery list to a Walmart pick up order and it all came out to $95.92. Here’s picture proof if you don’t believe me! (this is assuming you have to buy EVERYTHING on the grocery list, which may not be the case once you check your fridge and pantry)
A few tips:
- If you’re in a season where your budget it the most important thing (we’ve all been there!) I would HIGHLY suggest hitting up your local Aldi. They have great savings and it’s definitely worth the extra effort. Check out this post for more on that.
- If you’re in a season where time is the most important thing for you to save, then check out your local Walmart Grocery Pickup! You can use your lunch break or wait until the kids have gone to bed, make an order for a designated time, then they load it all up in your car! So easy!!
- Ground beef, pork, chicken and turkey are easily substituted for each other. If you prefer one over the other or one is on sale that week, go for it!
- If you would like further guidance on how to make a meal plan for your dietary needs please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or send us a message on Instagram. We would love to be a resource for you!
Don’t forget to download your free Meal Planning Guide