In case you missed it, we are currently doing a No Spending Month, so meal planning is more important than ever. We’re trying to minimize our monthly costs as much as possible, and making a weekly meal plan is one way to help achieve that goal.
I always start the month off by planning meals for the entire month using this free printable, knowing full well that it might change a bit from week to week. The reason being is that I might have some veggies left over that we need to use before they go bad, or if one recipe made more leftover than we had anticipated. I’ll sometimes leave some of the dates empty for this same reason.
So far, so good. Our first week went almost exactly as planned, although I did make an extra meal on Wednesday because I was scared we were going to lose power on Thursday, maybe even as far as into Friday. Fortunately, we didn’t lose power so we have lots of soup, which I froze to keep for later. Maybe on one of those unplanned days. Or a lazy day.
Meals for next week:
- Veggie Burgers with Potato Salad, Macaroni Salad & Coleslaw
- Homemade Fish Tacos
- Oven Rice & Stir Fry with frozen veggies
- Cheesy Ranch Potatoes with Caesar Salad
- Pad Thai
Every week, I would usually look at flyers and sales to find the best prices, but this month we’re doing it a bit differently for two reasons. Firstly, because we received $100 in gift cards from Superstore, and also because we’ve accumulated $50 worth of free groceries through the PC Plus program – win! However, I did set the budget for the month at $100 so I don’t plan on using our points to pay for any groceries yet.
So since we aren’t shopping around, I might change a few of my recipes around depending what goes on sale which week. If non-perishables go on sale before we plan on making the meal, I’ll buy the item in advance. But if it’s anything like fruit or vegetables, I’ll try to see if I can switch the meal to the current week so I can get the items at their best price without letting them go to waste.
After I look at all the flyers – or in this case, just the sale items from Superstore – I make two lists. The first list is of all the ingredients required to make those 7 meals. When it’s all written up, I go through my pantry and fridge to determine which ingredients I’m missing, put those all in bold text, and create my second list – AKA my grocery list. Side note – I tend to omit ingredients I can’t eat, such as cilantro.
- Flaxseed (Almost out)
- Black Beans
- Rolled Oats
- Bread Crumbs
- Olive Oil
- Soya Sauce/Tamari
- Chili Powder
- Red Pepper
- Tomato (Half left over from last week)
- French Dressing
- Miracle Whip
- Cabbage (Already purchased because they were on sale)
- Uncle Ben’s Long Grain Brown Rice
- Onion Soup Mix
- Canned Mushroom
- Vegetable Oil
- Frozen Veggies
- Stir Fry sauce (running low…)
- Ranch Dressing
- Caesar dressing
- Simulated Bacon Bits
- Instant Noodles
- Peanut Butter
- Fish Sauce
- Rice Vinegar
- Tomato Soup
Final grocery list:
- Red Pepper (~$2.90 at Superstore)
- Miracle Whip ($4.00 at Superstore – we might go buy this at Costco, as it would save us more money long term)
- Eggs ($3.89 at Superstore)
And I might buy milk, but we still have plenty of snacks in our stock pile that we need to eat so my total should definitely cost less than $20 this week.
Have you started meal planning? If so, what’s your favourite go to recipe? Leave us a link below in the comments!