3 Simple Steps for Meal Planning for the Busy Mama

Family, Homemaking, Mothering / Thursday, September 27th, 2018
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As a busy mother of 3 and postpartum doula, meal planning has saved my sanity many, many days! It also enables me to make healthier choices for my family, as opposed to just grabbing fast food. I have noticed over time, however, that this seems to be something many women struggle with. It can be done! Today, I would like to share with you 3 Simple Steps for meal planning that I hope will make it easier for you in your home.

1. Check out your calendar

I have found the key to successful meal planning is to keep track of my calendar, what events or activities are scheduled that week, etc. This lets me know which nights I need to have a crock pot meal prepared, and which nights I will have time for more extensive preparation. Of course, you do not have to follow this rigidly, I have been known to forget to thaw in time for it to cook in the crock pot, and here we are eating spaghetti! (Future post alert: quick meals!) So, take a look at your calendar, determine how many nights you will need something ready to eat, and get started!.

2. Create Your Menu

After looking at your calendar, this brings us to step two…the actual menu plan! I will include a sample of one I typically use, of course, everyone will have something different.


This is typically a busy day for us, as we have evening activities, so I will have a crock pot meal prepped. For instance- Roast. Put it in the morning, add seasoninig and veggies, set the timer, and done.


Manwich night.  Simple, and rarely have leftovers. One pan, which is always great!


This is another busy night for us, another crockpot meal. Roast chicken is always a fan favorite here! Thaw the night before, throw in the crock pot, season, set the timer, done! An added bonus is leftover chicken for lunch the next day!


Taco macaroni night!! Another simple dinner, with the seasonings of either using the crockpot, or your stove. Super simple either way.


Fridays are pizza night at our house, which means we either order in, or sometimes let the kids make their own, either english muffin style or in the regular oven.


 I give myself a break on Saturday, and typically Englishdo grilled cheese, or subs.


  Sometimes a crock pot day, sometimes a dish like baked chicken!

3. Make Your Grocery List

Make Grocery List

Okay, your calendar has been looked at, your menu is planned…now for the list! I see what I have planned for us to eat, and make my list accordingly. If I know I will need buns, (which can be frozen) they go on the list. Any seasonings a recipe calls for that I don’t already have….on the list! This also saves money by curbing impulse buying. Simple and budget friendly, two of my faves! For the last step….don’t forget your list on the counter as you leave your house!

I truly hope this post has been helpful, and will make your meal planning not as overwhelming. I am not a super mom or wife by any stretch of the imagination! I really just found a system that works well for me and hoped it can help others!

Jessi Doherty has been happily married to Patrick for 5 years.  She is the blessed mama of 3 children as well.  Jessi is stay at home mama as well as a birth, bereavement, and postpartum doula.  She is continuously learning and growing in her faith. 


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