If you are strapped for time, then you must probably start meal planning in advance. It is a good idea to make weekly menu planner templates to help you keep a track of what you want to cook.
Figuring out what to cook for dinner or breakfast is a herculean task. And what makes it more difficult is that you have to cater to each family members taste and preferences. It also becomes difficult to decide what to cook when you come home all tired after work and you have very little inclination to cook. In such times, meal planning will come to your rescue. It will not only help you in deciding what to cook, but it will also save time and money while cooking. On a weekend, why not gather all your family members and make a list of what everyone would like to eat throughout the week? After you have decided on the weekly menu, go shopping and purchase all the items that you will require.
In this weekly menu planner, the breakfast is kept light and healthy. Children generally do not wish to have fruits or milk during breakfast so a better alternative is to give them smoothies made with seasonal fresh fruits and yogurt. Try to have at least one salad or soup in your daily meal; it’s healthy, filling and easy to make. If you or anyone in your family is suffering from diabetes, it is advisable to find a sugar free alternative to chocolate pudding and maple syrup. If you are on a diet, go easy on the mayonnaise and cheese and dishes like mashed potato and lasagna.
Easy Weekly Menu Planner
- Breakfast: Oatmeal with strawberry smoothie
- Lunch: Grilled chicken sandwich, green salad with vinaigrette dressing
- Dinner: Tomato and basil soup, roast chicken with mashed potatoes
- Breakfast: Poached eggs, toasted bread with raspberry jam
- Lunch: Brown rice pilaf, coriander and celery clear soup
- Dinner: Shredded lamb and pomegranate salad, chocolate pudding
- Breakfast: Potato pancakes with maple syrup
- Lunch: Beef Stroganoff, garlic bread
- Dinner: Chicken lasagna, creamy potato salad
- Breakfast: Tomato bruschetta
- Lunch: Ham and cheese pizza, coleslaw
- Dinner: Minestrone soup, thai prawn noodles
- Breakfast: Scrambled eggs, mixed nuts granola
- Lunch: Grilled red mullet with tomato salsa, pea soup
- Dinner: Clams in a spicy cream sauce, artichoke and tomato risotto
- Breakfast: French toast, watermelon smoothie
- Lunch: Pot roasted beef, arugula salad with balsamic vinegar
- Dinner: Tuna salad, spiced pork chops with roasted potatoes
- Breakfast: Spanish omelet, yogurt with fruits
- Lunch: Spaghetti with meatballs, Greek salad
- Dinner: Roasted lobster with herb butter, chickpea and chorizo soup
This was a sample for weekly menu plan. You can use this meal planner as it is or make some changes to it to suit your family’s preference and nutritional needs. You can make your own healthy weekly menu planner by cutting down on red meat and butter, and including more seasonal vegetables as salads and side dish.
Given below are two weekly menu planner templates. The first template has rows for each day of the week and blank columns for each of breakfast, lunch and dinner. You can fill up these table fields with the menu items of your choice.
Template for Weekly Menu Planning
When you are planning a menu, make sure that you do not repeat the same dish in a week. Also, remember that you have to plan for snacks in between meals. You can also have a weekly theme, where you serve cuisines of one particular region for that week. Alternatively, you can create a weekly menu planner for toddlers. Always carry the weekly menu planner and grocery list with you when you go shopping, so that you do not miss out on essential food items when you are getting ready to cook. Try to include salads and soups in your menu as they are good for your health. Learn to use leftovers smartly so that you can minimize wastage and create healthy meals for less. For example, if you are cooking a roast chicken for dinner and there are leftovers, you can use it in the morning as filling for your sandwich. Now that you have a template for weekly menu planning, you can plan your menu and make cooking a hassle free experience.