Meal planning sounds like a great way to get dinner on the table fast and ensure your family is eating well.

Most of us aren’t good at meal planning. After a long day at work, interrupted by the school or extracurricular activities, we don’t have the time or energy to come up with dinners that are tasty and healthy.

If you are one of the many families who skip dinner or eat fast food because you didn’t have time to plan, don’t worry. With these meal-planning tips, you can make delicious home-cooked meals in no time.

1. Take Advantage of Meal Planning Apps

One trick to streamline your family meal planning is to take advantage of meal planning apps, recipes, and pre-planned meals that help you save precious time.

For example, oven roasted chicken halves are a perfect convenience food for any busy family and provide plenty of nutrition for the family. With a few simple ingredients, you can create a flavorful and nutritious meal that is sure to please. Meal planning apps and recipes allow you to assemble several meals with minimal effort. 

2. Making a Weekly Meal Plan

The best way to start meal planning is to sit down and make a weekly meal plan. Begin by deciding what meals everyone in the family enjoys eating. For example, some families might like chicken for dinner, while others prefer vegetarians.

Once you’ve selected what meals you plan on making, decide when you will cook them. This can be on specific days of the week or simply on days that work best for your family’s schedule.

3. Make a Grocery List

To create a meal plan, make a grocery list that includes all necessary items for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. To make a grocery list, take a few minutes to review the week’s meal plans, create a list of all items needed, and include pre-prepared and pantry staples. Be sure to include vegetables, fruits, proteins, starches, dairy items, and snacks.

Selecting items with healthy meal planning and long-term storage in mind can help save time and money. Cross-check at the store to make sure you have everything on the list and stick to it.

4. Prep and Package Meals in Advance

Prep and package meals in advance so that time-consuming meal preparation does not have to be done during the week.

This can be done by prepping ingredients for recipes, pre-cooking meals and snacks, and even batch-cooking meals and storing them in the freezer. By planning and prepping ingredients, meals can be ready in no time. 

5. Keep Leftovers for Lunches or Another Meal

When preparing a meal, aim to make enough for an extra meal or two, either for that evening or for lunch the next day. Before eating a meal, store leftovers in individual containers for family members to access easily for their meal.

When reheating, always check that food is cooked thoroughly, as some foods can be dangerous if they are not cooked.

Follow This Meal Planning Tips

Meal planning is a great way to save time and money. Make this part of your weekly routine to help make mealtime stress-free, nutritious and delicious. Take advantage of meal planning apps and recipes, make a grocery list, prep and package meals in advance, and keep leftovers for lunches or other meals.

Try these essential meal planning tips for the busy family and take the stress out of mealtime.

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