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Do you menu plan?

 How cute is this little notepad box? My Mum bought it for me. I don’t want to use it, it’s too cute!


Do you menu plan? If so, how far in advance?

I am shocking at organising what we are having for dinner in advance. I always wing it. I usually decide some time around lunch what we’re having (if anything exciting and this means I’ll go to the supermarket), or I say we’ll just use what we have here.

I need a simple plan to help me get more organised. Do you have any tips? I bet someone’s written an ebook or something like this. Help! Point me in the right direction…

I’ll come back and share what I find 🙂


  • Annie

    I hate to fess up but I don’t forward plan. Winging it is in my genes.
    I figure after cooking meals for nearly three decades and not letting any family members starve, well, I really don’t think pre-planning is going to happen any time soon.
    The only time I was even remotely organised was when the kids where younger and I was studying and working.
    So there you go..old red roses is absolutely no help whatsoever!

  • Anonymous

    Being a mother of four with children busy with after school activities I have to be organized. I let the children choose a meal for the week ( has to be a healthy choice). We also have monday night is pasta, Tuesday slow cooker ect…. This allows them to be involved and stops the nagging what’s for dinner tonight???? I also double most recipes – I don’t get another meal now that feed us all but come Friday night it’s TAKE OUT whatever you want from the freezer!
    A couple of weeks before Christmas I was so busy and not organized- I was at the supermarket just about every day and the money I spent! It is so worth having a plan.
    Good luck – Leanne

  • Anne Dunstan

    I am a fortnight meal planner, It is on my fridge so we all know what is happening (I also put my kinder meeting gym etc in a different colour so hubby know what is going on ha ha) As I do this I add the ingredients into my phone app (android ‘out of milk’) so that I have my shopping list with me and I also know what is in my cupboard at home. I am sure that apple would also have a similar app. Good Luck with your quest.

    • Katrina (author)

      Awesome! Am checking it out. Thank you! x

  • Amanda

    I menu plan as I was always finding myself looking in the fridge pondering what was for tea that night only to realise I was missing crutial ingredients for a dish. I try and sit down on a Sunday and jot down my meals for the week ahead. I try and stick to categories such as a pasta meal one night, chicken, meat, BBQ & salad etc. and one night is for takeaway and one for hubby to cook (a new addition since having Sophie). I used to use a simple menu planner from Etsy (can’t remember the seller but will email you if I remember) – it had a column down the left with boxes for each day and a grocery list on the right (it was perforated down the middle). It worked for me back then (I find the Kikki K ones a bit too full on as I don’t plan all my meals, just tea) but since having a baby, my needs have changed again and now I make my own. I write my meals down the left, but instead of a big long list, I write the ingredients I need to buy for each meal next to it on the right. At the start of the week, I make sure I have all the ‘buy ahead’ stuff for all the meals and then I buy the fresh stuff say twice a week closer to when it’s needed.

  • littlemissairgap

    I’ve done a similar thing to you in the past. I’ve written down all the meals I know all 3 children will eat without too much fuss but that list has been exhausted & I’m on the lookout for some new recipes. I’ve done a menu planner before & it has helped with the shopping & wastage but I actually lapsed with the planning as things got busier and busier towards the end of the year. That’s probably when I really should have been using/needing it. I think to be a total whiz at the menu planning it would help if we had a deep freeze. That way I could cook extra & put it away. This year the 2 eldest children will be doing gymnastics training into the evening finishing at 7:30 & 8pm. I think I’m going to have to really plan my meals as I’m going to be playing taxi most afternoons & evenings & I simply won’t have time to wing it. Alternatively, we could eat at the RSL across the road from gymnastics every evening 😉

  • sandra boulton

    Hi Katrina, Menu planning helps save time for sure….i have been a member of Fiona Lippey and co have written a book called the $21 Challenge. It explains how to take an inventory of freezer, pantry, fridge and plan menu’s around it…that way you don’t waste food, cause its past it’s used by date. There are also forms in the book to copy.
    Menu planning sure works, keep going ;-}

  • Jenny Qld

    I have been doing it for a few years…it saves the afternoon stress of what to cook.

    I have list of around 50 meals on the fridge and we all take turns choosing the weeks dinner menu.

    I have a few rules:

    * Different proteins each night (eg not chicken or red meat 2 nights in a row)
    * one vegetarian and/or seafood dinner per week
    * Equal mix of salads and vegetables through out the week
    * Easy meals from my freezer stores for nights with lots of sport activities

    I was inspired by the Kikki K meal planner but ended up making my own fortnightly template as a pretty Word document which I print out. Previously I had a white board in the kitchen.

    I have found that planning makes it so much simpler for me and I do tend to only buy what I need rather than just buying a box of fruit and veggies and then throwing out what I didn’t use.

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