One of the most efficient systems we have in place at our house is our weekly menu planning system. To save ourselves from the headache of trying to figure out what’s for dinner each night and keep our grocery bill under control each month we created a weekly menu plan. This plan includes a set of printable worksheets that keep us organized and on track each week. Included in this set is a Weekly Menu Plan, Weekly Shopping List, Pantry Inventory List and Freezer Inventory List. By keeping these inventory lists up to date and following our weekly menu planning system, we always know exactly what we have on hand, what we need from the grocery store, and what meals we are preparing in the coming week. Honestly, I didn’t think we would ever get a solid system into place for menu planning but I really think we have it mastered! I love these printables so much that I wanted to share them with you, our subscribers, in hopes they will help your family’s menu planning system become more effective and efficient!
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Here’s what’s included in the set:
This is our weekly menu plan and includes a spot for breakfast, lunch and dinner plans. We kept the boxes nice and open so you can jot notes or recipe sources in there if you need.
This is the printable shopping list that’s included in the set. This list is broken into seven categories which include dairy, deli, bakery, household, pantry, produce and freezer. The boxes are large enough to include the item and a short note (I will include “coupon” or “sale” to remind me to check into those as I’m shopping). Plus there’s a checkbox next to each item so you won’t forget anything!
One of the biggest mistakes we were making while meal planning and grocery shopping was duplication. We would be standing at the store thinking, “Did we have any quinoa in the pantry?” “How many pounds of chicken breast were left in the chest freezer?” So to keep ourselves from buying items we already had at home we started using these inventory lists. The freezer meal inventory list is great for keeping track of any freezer items and pre-made meals that you might be storing for later.
This is our pantry inventory sheet and we try to update this sheet each week before we start our planning. It’s nice to have this with us while grocery shopping too – sometimes there’s an amazing sale on something so we check the pantry sheet to see if it’s worth stocking up on!
I print these worksheets 2 to a page and use them in an ARC Notebook by Staples that we keep in our command center just off the kitchen. That makes it super simple to grab each day and it’s a small enough notebook that Frankie or I can throw it in our bag before we head to the grocery store. (Check out more on how we use ARC notebooks all over our house!)