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Old 02-18-2012, 09:10 AM   #1
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Do You Plan Your Meals?

I've been wondering---particularly as I read the daily "what's for dinner" threads, how many preplan their meals vs how many wing it?

Due to the way we have to shop (essentially, once a week to the nearest big city) and personal inclination, we're in the preplan group.

We actually write out a weekly menu planner. For us that has several advantages: it helps develop a shopping list, let's me know how much early prep I need to do, and assures that the weekly meals are in balance.

Until recently I wrote a lot of cookbook reviews, and, in fact, managed a staff of 13 reviewers. Without preplanning there's no way I could do the volume of recipe testing that required. So the weekly plan was even more important.

On the plan the meals are merely numbered, and prepared as the mood hits. We do not use a Tuesday is pizza night, Friday is chicken night kind of rotation. And if we feel like varying it we certainly don't hesitate.

How about everyone else?


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Old 02-18-2012, 11:28 AM   #2
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I make a loose plan for the week around what is in season and what is on special at the market. The plan is always subject to change.

Everything in life should have a plan A and a plan B even if you do not or cannot follow them, ya still need a plan!

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Old 02-18-2012, 11:55 AM   #3
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Vague plans...I plan on eating. From there I may go shopping, my regular grocery store is one block away from work and I pass it at least twice a day, I also will stand in front of the pantry and try to decide what I will be throwing together.

Some meals are completely planned, but usually while I am standing in the store and I find a protein I would like to have for the night.
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Old 02-18-2012, 11:59 AM   #4
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Well, I try to plan. But I store up during the summer/fall; I have a full pantry and freezer) and an inventory on my phone.

It depends on the weather, what I'll be doing on a given day (if I'm going to be shopping all day, it'll be a slow cooker recipes, for example.)
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Old 02-18-2012, 12:10 PM   #5
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I usually make a list of 5 meals to have throughout the week. And I make one of them on any given day based on what I feel like.
Sometimes though, I forget to defrost something and that just throws the whole plan out the window
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Old 02-18-2012, 12:16 PM   #6
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Except for Taco Tuesday, I usually wing it. Our grocery stores are all just a few miles away.
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Old 02-18-2012, 12:27 PM   #7
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Not really. I sometimes plan about 24 hours in advance, but that is also subject to change at any time. Or, occasionally I will buy some sort of perishable item for a planned meal and make sure I get around to using it before it goes bad. But, depending on what it is, that could be a few days, give or take.
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Old 02-18-2012, 12:27 PM   #8
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I usually plan my meals the day before or that day while I am working.

The grocery store is right on my way home so I can stop if needed. The phone app that someone posted on the site has helped me tremendously. I am getting much better at getting only what what I am out of or need for a particular recipe since I just type it into my phone as soon as I think of it. My stops are getting a little less frequent.
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Old 02-18-2012, 01:01 PM   #9
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Plan for sure. We get the Penn Dutch add on Wednesday and our local Publix on Thursday. If some meat/seafood is on special at Penn Dutch I'll pick some up. It gets divided and into the deep freezer. So we usually have various meats/seafood in the deep freezer to select from. We'll plan a menu based on items from the deep freezer, move the selections to the side by side and shop for what we need at the grocery. Although we pretty much stick to the menu, it isn't carved in stone and we may substitute if one of us has a desire for something different (like when I'm in the area of Grimm's Stone Crabs during season) or our day runs out of hours.
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Old 02-18-2012, 01:08 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by JoshuaNY View Post
I usually make a list of 5 meals to have throughout the week. And I make one of them on any given day based on what I feel like.
Sometimes though, I forget to defrost something and that just throws the whole plan out the window
Well, if I planned the five meals I would be doing it like you

I may start doing that. I'm good at the "forgot to take it out of the freezer" part.

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