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Do you ever have a hard time sticking to your meal plan? My system for THM Meal Planning has helped us so much!
A few months ago, I went live on Facebook to cover THM Meal Planning. I got quite a few questions about our meal planning/calendar system on my refrigerator below:
Please excuse the blurry picture above – it's a screen shot from the live video! Here's a better photo:
It's a pretty simple system, but it's been fantastic for keeping us organized and eating at home!
It all starts with this clear magnetic set from Amazon for my refrigerator:
It comes with two pieces: a monthly calendar and a weekly planner. The weekly planner is the one I use for my THM Meal Planning.
In my house, we use the top calendar to track kids coming and going (we have a blended family – my five plus his one = 6 kids, with 5 at home, and 3 adults because my husband's grandmother lives with us).
The bottom piece is the weekly meal planner, and I use that to write down the weekly THM meal plan. That's especially important because I need to plan easy meals on days I have my coaching classes, crockpot meals for nights that my son has football games or when the kids have Awana, etc.
Instead of meal planning breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and desserts I keep it SUPER simple. I alternate scrambled eggs (S) and oatmeal (E) every other day.
Lunches are either leftovers, soup, or salad. It's just a lot less thinking and it keeps us on an easy routine! Plus, you can add so much variety to all of those foods. These are just some options I explore within a week:
Scrambled eggs, scrambled eggs with veggies, scrambled eggs with bacon, etc.
Sweatpants oatmeal, overnight oatmeal, oatmeal on the go cups, etc.
For lunch – I take a bed of fresh salad greens and change the veggies, protein, and dressing for lots of variety. With the soup, I can make a big pot of soup for an easy Sunday night dinner (S, E, or FP – there are lots of options out there!).
I like to plan breakfast casseroles on the weekends so I can double them and portion the leftovers out throughout the week, but when I'm busy I just stick to eggs or oatmeal. Honestly, meal planning is so much easier when I keep it simple! I also hack my breakfasts to make everything even easier.
With breakfasts and lunches planned out, and some go-to snacks, I plan meals around what's on sale, always shopping my freezer and pantry first.
Here's what's written on the THM Meal Planning board above (it doesn't photograph well!):
Sunday – Italian Chicken, Caprese Salad, and Brussels Sprouts
Monday – Chicken Tacos
Tuesday – Steak, Potatoes, and Broccoli (the potatoes are for the rest of the family so they eat XOs – I stuck to steak and broccoli for an S)
Wednesday – Italian Beef Sandwiches (on plan bread for me, regular bread for everyone else)
Thursday – Creamy Garlic Pork Chops, Rice (jasmine rice for the family, cauliflower rice for me), and steamed edamame with freshly ground salt
Friday – Chicken Veggie Bowls
Saturday – Leftovers
If you aren't much of a meal plan person, I'd really encourage you to make lists of meals you have ingredients for and just cross them off as you use them – these acrylic calendars are perfect for that, too!
If you need some help with meal planning, I have a full post with tons of ideas and tips for you here:
Ultimate Guide to Meal Planning for THM
And I have a GIANT list of 650+ slimming THM Meal Ideas for you here: 650+ Meal Ideas for THM