At Republic Bank, we strive to make things a little easier in the neighborhood. Yes, we even provide tips on meal planning! Meal planning is a great way to stay organized during the week. There are many wonderful meals to make ahead and freeze, or throw together last minute. We understand how easy it is to get off track during your busy schedule, but we want to show you that meal planning is an easy tool you can use to cut your spending.
To help you get started, we have laid out some pointers on beginning your meal planning adventure.
Craft your Plan
Get your recipes ready for the week. When you are just getting started with meal planning, begin with a reasonable goal, like planning three meals a week. Make a list of all the ingredients you will need and read the recipe thoroughly. Make-ahead or freezer meals are a great addition to your weekly meal plan. As schedules shift throughout the week, you can rest easy knowing you can simply thaw and heat your freezer meal for a stress-free dinner.
If you need some inspiration, visit a popular recipe website to find meals your family will enjoy. Use the ingredient lists to determine what you need to make these meals during the upcoming week. In addition, include a few snacks on your list. As you shop, only purchase the items on your list. This is key to staying within your budget. Some stores even have tools available for consumers to create online shopping lists; in addition, weekly sales could be available online.
Don't forget to follow the supermarkets you frequent on social media. Many companies use this avenue to offer special promotions, giveaways and coupons to their social media communities. Also, check for online coupons on your smartphone. This eliminates papers and shopper's panic when a coupon goes missing.
In order to make this plan successful, you will need to think a little outside the box. Get creative with your meals and reinvent meal time. A meal does not mean an enormous homemade feast with all the trimmings. Instead, consider simple and less time-consuming ventures, such as a quick salad with protein, baked chicken breast and vegetables, or pasta!
Also, you might consider making extra to save for leftovers or freeze for a later date. Homemade frozen dinners are great during a busy week or when you get tight on your budget. Take the leftovers to work or school and feel good about the money you are saving.
Don't be discouraged if you grab a quick bite while running errands or if you forget your lunch. The trick is getting back on track the next day. Set an achievable goal each week to work toward.
If you need help getting your savings on track, contact your local Republic Bank. Give us a call and set up an appointment to find a solution for your banking needs.