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Meal Planning – Eat Healthier While Saving Money and Time

Does dinner time find you looking around in the refrigerator and cabinets? You have ideas, but not the right ingredients. Or, you have some ingredients, but not enough of them. The clock is ticking, and before you know it, you’re dialing up your favorite takeout joint in desperation. At the end of the week, you may find yourself tossing out foods that you never used because you didn’t plan well.

If this sounds familiar, there is a better way. It’s called meal planning. Some people call it meal prep. Whatever you call it, let Food Town help you make your weekly meals in a snap. https://www.yourfoodtown.com/

Meal Planning 101 Basics:

1. Once a week, make a menu of meals for each day of the week and keep it somewhere handy, like on your refrigerator.

2. Create a shopping list of all the items you need for the meals.

3. Visit your local Food Town and buy the items on your list. 

4. During the week, prepare and eat the meals from your menu.

It’s as simple as that. But it’s also really effective because meal planning helps you:

Eat better

When you plan your meals in advance, you reduce the risk of making poor eating choices due to hunger or a time crunch. If you’ve ever been on a diet, or are just trying to eat healthier, you know that the best-laid plans can go out the window when you’re hungry or pressed for time. But if you’ve taken the time to plan your meals, all you need to do to stay on track is refer to your menu and then visit Food Town to buy everything you need.  Now when you open your refrigerator, you can get cook those healthier meals you planned.

It can feel overwhelming to change your eating habits. But meal planning helps lessen that fatigue. When you make a meal plan, you only need to focus on your food choices once a week. After you’ve made the menu and shopped, all that’s left to do is cook and eat those healthy meals. Meal planning frees you from having to think about what you’re going to eat every day.

Meal planning saves you money

Unless your menu is full of steak and lobster dinners, meal planning and shopping for your items at Food Town will save you money.  Think about how much money you spend on one meal out, then multiply that by the number of times you typically eat out or order delivery. Even less expensive options like burgers or pizza can add up. 

Love burritos? You can spend $7 on one eating out, or spend a few dollars more and make four or more burritos that you can freeze and eat in the future. No matter what you are ordering, cooking for yourself is cheaper and most likely, healthier. 

Planning your meals will also reduce the quantity of food that goes bad in your fridge (because you ordered out instead of cooking that broccoli as you had planned).

And as a bonus, if you like to eat out occasionally, you can use the money you’ve saved by meal planning for nice dining out that you wouldn’t ordinarily splurge on. 

Meal planning extra credit

Now that you have got the basics down, here’s how to take your meal planning to the next level:

Plan all your meals

Many people start meal planning dinners only. But there’s no reason to stop there. Planning lunches and breakfasts will help you meet your healthy eating goals and save you money as well. Salad fixings, lean meats, oatmeal, healthy cereal, and whole wheat bread are just a few items you will find at Food Town to help you achieve your goal.

Plan for two weeks at a time instead of one

Meal planning and grocery shopping for two weeks at a time is a little trickier than planning for one week because you need to take into account produce spoilage. But it’s still possible. Here are a few tips to make it easier:

•   Cook a double batch of one or two of your recipes the first week and freeze the extra to eat the second week.

•   Use a mix of fresh and frozen produce. Plan to use produce that spoils quickly (berries, some greens, tomatoes, etc.) the first week. In the second week, you can use the frozen options and the hardier fresh fruits and veggies, like broccoli, whole mushrooms, and apples.  Food Town carries fresh and frozen vegetables at low prices so you can stock up.

•   Freeze meats and bread as soon as you get home from the store, then defrost as needed.  You can also find large market-wrapped packs of meat at Food Town to freeze.  This will save you a tremendous amount of money.

If you can get the hang of bimonthly meal planning, you’ll save even more time.

People are spending more time at home than ever these days. There’s never been a better time to start meal planning. If you want to improve your diet and save money in the process, give it a try. Don’t forget, Food Town can help you simplify your shopping and save money without breaking the bank.  Find our weekly deals here: https://www.yourfoodtown.com/weekly-ad/

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