Weekly Meal Plans on a Budget
In keeping up with your budget, you will find that cutting back on food expenses is a great way to reduce costs. A highly recommended way to cut back on food costs is to trade eating out with preparing your own meals at home. There are lots of budget-friendly meals you can prepare at home. In this article, we will be showing you ways you can plan your meals weekly when you are on a budget, a few tips on how to do this, and sample weekly meal plans that are pocket-friendly.
How to create a weekly meal plan
When creating a weekly meal plan, there are some things you must consider, especially when you are on a budget. The goal is to eat well with as little as possible and ensure that nothing goes to waste. Here are ways you can do this:
- Start with planning for one week at a time. If you are trying out meal planning for the first time, do not bombard yourself with a lot of work.
- Consider your favorite dishes and those of your family.
- If you include a meal in week one and your family likes it, consider repeating it in week two or three.
- Take everyone’s engagements into consideration. Find out if any family members will be absent at any point in the week and plan around it.
- If it is possible to use what you have at home, do so. This way, you do not have to buy more than what you need.
- Plan your meals ahead of shopping, so you know exactly what to buy. This way, you can avoid impulse buying.
- Since you are on a budget, you may want to check for weekly sales or discounts at the grocery store. There are usually ads you could check for this information.
- When planning future meals, factor in your leftovers, and make use of them. For example, you can use yesterday’s dinner leftovers to prepare today’s lunch.
- Consider making your meals in bulk and freezing them for later. This will save you a lot of time. You can also do this if it is one of your favorite meals.
- If you have a pantry, ensure to stock it properly. This will save money in the long run. It will also save you time, as you will not have to juggle back and forth to the store.
Sample weekly meal plans
Have a look at the sample meal plans below and see if any of the meals appeal to you.
|Monday||Waffles||Quinoa Salad||Creamy Chicken, Brussels Sprouts & Mushrooms Pasta|
|Tuesday||Cereal with warm milk||BBQ Chicken Pot Pie||Vegetarian Spaghetti Squash Lasagna|
|Wednesday||Pancakes||Caesar sandwich||Chicken Fried Rice|
|Thursday||Bagels with peanut butter||Pasta salad||Beef stew|
|Friday||French toast||Vegan lentil stew||Roasted Buffalo Chickpea Wraps|
|Saturday||Egg omelets||Chicken parmesan||Tomato Bun Tuna Melt|
|Sunday||Fried eggs with toast||Chicken burrito||Bean & Veggie Taco Bowl|
|Monday||Boiled eggs with whole wheat pita toast.||Pepperoni pizza slider||Thai curry with frozen vegetables|
|Tuesday||Oatmeal||Vegan taco casserole||Turkey chili|
|Wednesday||A banana or pineapple smoothie||Quinoa Salad Wraps||Lentil soup and bread|
|Thursday||Cold cereal and milk||Leftover curry in whole wheat wrap||Chickpea curry|
|Friday||Apple salad||Mashed and seasoned leftover chickpeas||Whole wheat pasta and sauce|
|Saturday||Banana pancakes||Leftover chili in taco shells with vegetables||Potato and egg frittata|
|Sunday||Scrambled eggs and toast||A baked potato with tuna, tomato, and fresh spinach.||Chicken casserole made with any available vegetables or canned beans|