Menu Planning not working? Try this instead!

For many busy moms, menu planning in advance is an invaluable tool. It allows them to have a general idea of what their family will have for dinner instead of scrambling at the last minute to get something on the table.

I have a unique situation where I work from home but, due to my late work schedule, don’t have to worry about dinner because my husband takes care of it. I do, however, need to worry about breakfast, lunch and snacks. My goal throughout the day is to make healthy choices so I tried menu planning for these meals but for some reason, it just didn’t work for me. I tend to choose what I eat based on whatever I’m ‘in the mood for’ so as a result, it was impossible to choose my meals in advance.

There’s also another important factor when choosing my meals: what healthy options do I have in the house? That’s when I got the idea to keep a ‘food inventory’ of all the healthy food options I have in the house to help me decide what to eat. I designed the template to keep track of foods I have in stock by category: Vegetables (or Veggies), Fruits, Grains, Drinks, Ingredients, Other, and Leftovers.

Gillio, planner, planners, inserts, personal size

Custom ‘Food Inventory’ insert for personal size planner

Gillio, planner, planners, inserts, personal size

Insert includes a daily meal planner on the reverse side

Filofax, original Nude, planner, planners, inserts, A5 size

Custom food inventory insert for A5 size

Filofax, original Nude, planner, planners, inserts, A5 size

Weekly Meal Planner on reverse side

This approach worked out better for me because it prevented me from choosing ‘unhealthy’ options and allowed to quickly prepare a healthy meal. Before, I would forget what I had in the house as well as what had recently finished or expired. My food inventory–which I update every Sunday–helps me to remember. It was a subtle shift in approach but very effective in achieving the same goal: planning my meals. For moms with a similar situation as mine, those who prefer to choose meals on a whim, or even those who are single and only have to plan for themselves, I highly recommend you give this approach a try. If you do, I’d love to hear about your experience so please come back and share in the comments below.

Hope this helps! šŸ™‚

2 thoughts on “Menu Planning not working? Try this instead!

Share your thoughts and tips below!