Weekly Meal Prep Template

Meal Prep With Kids

One of the biggest stressors in my life is feeding the family. I love cooking and grocery shopping but I never feel like I have enough time or space to cook and prep for all the meals I have. I also noticed that I tend to buy a ton of stuff and then just make whatever I can out of the items. Going into 2020, I'm really focusing on how I can reduce stress, food waste and properly budget for the meals I need to make. I don't usually cook with recipes so I just think of tried and true items and list the key ingredients I'll need.

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Only buy whats needed
This seems logical but I've definitely been guilty of doing a mass shop only to have produce go to waste or been in a frenzy to freeze meat before the expiration. By looking at what days and meals you'll actually be eating, it makes it easy to shop for the necessary items. We tend to eat 2 meals out on the weekends so buying a ton of fresh produce on a Friday is a waste but I need to make sure I stock up on stroller snacks while we're out on the go!

Think about what you'll have time to cook and how to stretch ingredients
Writing down what dishes you plan to cook will give you the clarity to do a little extra prep on certain days. Items like chopping the veggies for two nights or making a large batch of rice is easy and can save a ton of time if you know you'll be eating them the next day. These are also great to toss in a pan with an egg for an easy and quick fried rice!

Plan out what meals you'll be eating
It also allows you to see what needs to be used up and only purchase whats necessary. I've definitely been guilty of having too much fresh food but I've also been guilty starting a meal and realizing half way through that I don't have a key ingredient... like a tin of beans for chili or enough milk for a cream based soup! Duh!

Went you haven't had time to properly plan
By having an accessible list of recipes that your family loves, you can skim it to see what you have on hand. When kids are hangry it's easy to get flustered so the list is a great cheat sheet of tried and true favorites.

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For more tips on saving time on everyday tasks (and to get my Family Shopping List!) check out my 'batching' post! I know being a little more conscious of meal time has eliminated stress for me as a working mom and I hope it does for you too!

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