Are you a meal planner yet? Do you struggle to keep all your recipes organized, or are you like me, planning a meal you thought you saw online and then spending half an hour looking for the recipe, finally serving leftovers to the family because it got too close to dinnertime?
Sometimes we all need a little organization help, and Plan to Eat is an excellent option for menu planning skills. It serves so many functions at once:
- weekly or monthly calendar
- shopping list
- pantry contents list
- recipe organizer
- recipe search
- recipe sharing with others
- resource for meal planning skills
If I don’t have a plan, I totally struggle to get dinner on the table both on time and healthfully.
We’ll be talking later today in the Monday Mission about adjusting your meal planning system to work for hectic (and/or lazy) summer months when you kind of just want to let everything go. I know from experience, and perhaps you’ve found the same, that my stress level and the nourishment on the table is directly correlated to whether or not I put a little up front time into planning and preparation – before 5 p.m.
I strongly believe that meal planning helps families eat healthier food. Even if you’re not by nature a planner, you’re giving yourself a leg up on nutrition by meal planning.
Do It Online
If you’re like me, at least half of your recipes (getting on toward 80-90% lately, I think!) are on the computer and/or online. Harness that availability and flexibility and do your meal planning online, too.I’ve talked many times about Plan to Eat and the great meal planning software/system they offer. Here are the greatest perks, in my opinion:
- Easily organize your own recipes, especially from online sources
- PTE has a bookmarklet that, with one click on your task bar, automatically imports most recipe formats, so you even get to skip the “copy and paste” part of the job. It intuitively formats the ingredients so they can talk to your shopping list AND be searchable for when you need “a recipe with swiss chard” or whatever.
- Can tag recipes so you can quickly see your own “fast meals” “chicken main dishes” “meatless meals” “family favorites” or whatever. The system is what you make it!
- Recipe sharing with other friends
- Adding a recipe to your meal plan automatically adds it to the shopping list, which cross-references your pantry supplies. Seriously!
- Many people say they save money because they don’t waste as much food, plus save time in the grocery store because their list is so organized!
- QUICK drag and drop system to move meals from day to day as your meal plan shifts to accommodate real life
- You can save and reuse meal plans quickly – great for the crazy busy times when you can hardly think
- “Eat from pantry” button ensures that you can find one of your own recipes that won’t force a trip to the store if you can’t get there for a few days
But don’t take my word for it – check out Plan to Eat and read the testimonials from others, and better yet, try it for yourself! PTE offers a free 30-day trial membership, so play around with the system, test its power and capabilities, and see if it will work for you.
Plan To Eat’s blog even has a Nourishing Traditions category and More with Less recipes, two cookbooks I’ve drawn from often. It’s one “business” blog worth subscribing to!
Even better yet than the better yet: You can win one of two one-year subscriptions to Plan To Eat here today! ($39 value)
Shhhh…a little secret (until tomorrow) – you can visit the special KS/PTE group, and new users get an automatic 20% off applied to a subscription purchase! Current users automatically get to see all the KS group recipes from everyone who visits – such a cool recipe sharing function! More details tomorrow…
Giveaways at Kitchen Stewardship are run via a survey, which means comments on this post do not count (and will be deleted). In the long run, this is quicker for you if you go for extra entries.
CLICK HERE TO ENTER GIVEAWAY CONTEST. GIVEAWAY NOW CLOSED – THANKS FOR ENTERING!
There are 6 possible entries! Here’s what you can do to win:
- *Mandatory entry: Check out Plan to Eat and tell us what aspect would make the biggest difference in your meal planning process? if you don’t want to visit the site, you can simply type “no thanks”…but of course it’s polite to visit our generous sponsors and see what they have to offer!
- Subscribe in a reader or via email to Kitchen Stewardship (or tell me if you already do).
- Subscribe to Plan To Eat’s blog.
- Tell me if you “Like” Kitchen Stewardship on Facebook.
- Email 5 friends about this giveaway along with the link to it. (Email subscribers can forward their message.)
- Follow @kitchenstew on Twitter AND tweet this:
I won’t forget to meal plan this summer if I win a year of @plantoeat from @kitchenstew! [ENTER URL HERE]
Remember, comments here DO NOT COUNT. You must use the survey form.
I will use random.org’s integer generator to choose the winner, who will be announced on the blog and will receive an email. The giveaway is open to anyone, anywhere! Entries will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. EST on Sunday, June 10 and I’ll post the winners later that week.
If you missed the last Monday Mission, click here.
Disclosure: I received products for my review at no charge, which of course did not affect my opinion in the least. Giveaways are paid advertising and a great thing for my readers, so I’m happy to include it separately from the review. See my full advertising disclosure here.
Official rules and small print stuff: 1) No purchase necessary to win 2) must be 13 or older to enter and have a mailing address within the sponsor’s boundaries (see above) 3) only one survey entry per person 4) odds of winning depend on number of entries 5) employees of Kitchen Stewardship, LLC or sponsoring company not eligible for participation 6) contest sponsored by Plan to Eat 7) prizes must be accepted as is and are not redeemable for cash 8 ) Kitchen Stewardship, LLC and sponsoring company are not liable for any injury or damage to persons and/or things as a result of the acceptance of the prize offered. 9) This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.