It is back-to-school time and that means we are BUSY! I am sure you can relate. We are on the go 3 days a week to Soccer practice each evening. In order to have time for homework and to visit with Peyton I utilize menu planning strategies so that I am out of the kitchen and able to be available to him. Peyton is always starving when he gets out of school; however with a little planning I am able to provide him a light snack and not ruin his dinner appetite. I like to menu plan so that my family gets fed while we are on the go.
If you are like me you have a love/hate relationship with back-to-school. I love summer and the time that I get to spend with Peyton but I also love school because we are in a set routine that we all thrive in. I have found that by menu planning I am able to remove the stress of what is for dinner from my life and it saves me both time and money (and my sanity). It also keeps our budget in line when it comes to dining out. When you menu plan it is important to include a family favorite weekly (and a leftovers or dining out night if desired). We try to make frugal menu plans to keep within our monthly budgets. A helpful tip is to plan meals from your stockpile.
5 Menu Planning Tips for Busy Moms:
Consider Freezer Cooking: By spending 1-2 days bulk cooking for your family and prepare recipes that you can then thaw and cook throughout the month. We have a 20 Freezer Meals in 4 hours plan and a 8 Freezer Meals in 2 hours plan that can help you get started.
Utilize the Crockpot: We like to use a slow cooker to cook our meals because it allows us more time to spend with our kids, get our errands run and be on the go and still provide a hot dinner at the end of the busy day. Check out our crockpot recipes when creating your menu plan.
Consider One Dish Meals: By adding one dish meals to your menu plan you are saving time in preparation and cleanup. This is a great way to feed your family and save time too! One of my favorites is this Complete Steak Dinner in the Crockpot and Easy Italian Chicken Dinner Meal.
Stock up on Frozen Meals: You don't have to cook from scratch 7 days a week! Seriously! It is important to create a stockpile of frozen foods so that you have them at your finger tips when you want to incorporate them into your menu plan. We like to stockpile JACK’S pizza because they are super affordable and the perfect solution for quick meals and afternoon snacks. What we love is that JACK’S frozen pizza not only tastes delicious it is also an affordable price that the whole family loves. What I love is that it fuels Peyton and allows our family to stay on schedule with its quick prep time. That is win/win for me. What’s more, JACK’S Pizza has introduced quick and easy cooking instructions tailored specifically for gas grills - perfect for bringing an indoor family favorite outdoors this fall.
Be Flexible: You are able to have flexibility in your menu by flipping the days if necessary or if something unexpected comes up in the week. We find that we rarely go out to eat when we menu plan because we know what is for dinner and by menu planning we save money because we know what we need to stockpile.
JACK’S Pizza is an affordable and great tasting mealtime solution. It is available nationwide at your local grocery, drug and convenience stores. Visit nestleusa.com to find a store with your favorite JACK’S™ Pizza. We are huge fans of the cheese, pepperoni, deluxe and meat.
Disclosure: I was compensated by JACK’S Pizza for this post. All opinions expressed within are my own.