How to Simplify Meal Planning

Today I’m going to share with you how to make meal planning easier for your entire family.  With a little planning and preparation, you can create a meal planning system that works for you and will help your family eat healthier!

Meal Planning
Pop over to THIS POST to learn how to simplify dinner planning by shopping and preparing in bulk and developing a meal plan.  By the way, if you haven’t subscribed to my newsletter, today is the perfect day to do so because all of my subscribewrs get a FREE 8-Week Meal Plan + Shopping List!
Planning weeknight dinners is only part of the meal planning process.  Don’t forget to pack those lunches to save time, money, and your health!

The hubs and I each take leftovers from the previous night’s dinner to work for lunch, along with one or two healthy snacks.  My daughter takes her tried and true apple jelly and peanut butter sandwich (she’s addicted, I tell ya) and 3 small snacks plus a juice bottle.  To make lunch planning easier, here are a few tips:

  • Pack lunches the night before.  Period.  You know you’ll be too tired or too rushed to think about it in the morning.
  • Prepare snacks each week and have them at the ready in the fridge or pantry.
  • Have a designated lunch station and have kids pack their own lunches if they are old enough.
  • Make enough dinner to have leftovers for lunch the following day.

My Lunch Plan System

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I buy a big carton of Goldfish, and separate it into snack-size Ziploc bags, then throw them all into our lunch station.  (To find out how we set up our lunch station, check out this post.)

Meal Planning

For fresh fruit, I use Ziploc bags, as well as some small Glad containers I found at Wal-mart.  I buy a bunch of grapes, wash them and separate them into the Ziploc bags.  Into the plastic tray they go for easy snacks.

Meal Planning

I do the same with apples, but to keep them from turning brown, I use this trick I found on Pinterest:

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– After washing and slicing, soak apple slices in cold water for 3 minutes or so.  Drain.
– Soak them in Sprite for 3 minutes or so.  Drain.

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I promise this works, and it doesn’t affect the flavor at all.  I then divide my apple slices into Ziploc bags and pop them in the fridge with the grapes.  I put peanut butter in the little Glad containers and pop those in the pantry with the other lunch items.

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I also do this for celery and ranch dressing.

It’s so much easier to eat healthy when the prep work is done and you can grab a snack and head out the door.

Meal Planning

We have a lunch station in the pantry for the non-refrigerated snacks.  I also keep Marley’s lunch bag and sandwich bread in the same spot.  It makes it so much easier for us all to pack lunches.

Be sure to stop by THIS POST today to learn how to simplify dinner planning, and subscribe to my newseltter to get your Free 8-week Meal Plan + Shopping List!

How do you simplify meal planning?

For more kitchen organization, try these posts:

How to Simplify Meal Planning – Dinners
Pantry Lunch Station
Small Kitchen Organization

6 Responses

  1. Wow. This is awesome. However my idea of simplifying meal planning is a lean cuisine without potatoes. 😉

  2. Great question. My daughter is 11 & we have always had a rule that whatever goes in the lunch bag comes home. But I can understand with smaller kids there is a chance they will lose or trash them. Jif makes PB cups that you can buy in an 8-pack for only a few dollars. 8 single servings. That may work better for you 🙂


I'm Kirsten & I'm happy you're here! Sweet Tea & Saving Grace supports women seeking to find balance in the busy, deepen their faith, and instill joy and love in their homes, lives, and blogs by providing encouraging and inspiring content and valuable resources. My prayer is for you to leave here better than when you came. Be blessed!