Menu Planning Is Not Enough

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I believe in menu planning. I have been doing it faithfully for about 15 years. That’s how I know it is not enough.

In addition to the hard work of planning out your meals you have to pay attention to it. I heard a saying somewhere along the way that you should know what is for dinner by either 10pm or 10am. While it may work for some people it never worked for me.

Why? Because I needed to take food from the freezer or precook something a day or 2 in advance. When operating with very small grocery budget every step in the process is important.

Let’s say I wanted to roast a chicken for dinner on Thursday, less than 24 hours is not enough notice. I need to take the bird out of the freezer by at least Tuesday to allow it enough time to thaw. What if I am going to make crockpot baked beans to serve on Friday? That requires precooking the beans on either Wednesday or Thursday. That way you are ready to go by 10am on Friday.

The secret is to look ahead at your plan by 2 or 3 days. At 10 am or pm do not just look at what is on the menu for tomorrow, look several days in advance and act accordingly.

Please share! What are some of your tricks to making a menu plan work for you?

This post is part of 31 Days Of Frugal Cooking.