I want to share my real food meal planning using staple foods in 8 steps today.
Fact: Ryan didn’t marry me for my mad cooking and baking skills.
In fact, when we met, I barely knew how to throw together boxed Mac ‘n Cheese. Consequently, this is part of the reason my health conditions kept getting worse and worse.
The health mis-haps were a blessing in disguise, as twisted as that may sound.
I learned and perfected the art of cooking and baking, madly falling in love with them both and healing all along.
People assume that what I do is extremely complicated. They assume that I spend hours and hours and hours in the kitchen.
And before we adopted the littles, I maybe did so. Not because it took that long, but more so because I was perfecting my art for me and for you.
Now I am a busy mama, and I simply don’t have all the kitchen playing time available.
BUT….I do still have time to eat supremely and feed my family exceptionally.
How? Because I know how to meal plan, and meal planning is not as complicated as we all make it out to be.
Why? Because we are creatures of habit. There is no need to reinvent your own wheel if it’s already been invented by you – the Master.
All too often, we tell ourselves that every single meal and snack must be different. This difference creates a sense of anxiety…..how am I going to figure out 5 different meals and snacks to eat in one day? Sound familiar?
pssst – also make note that if your gut is a mess and you are trying to heal it, eating a million different ingredients a day is a sure way to never figure out what’s bothering you. Remember ingredients vs ingredient(s)?
I now take a simplified, streamlined approach to meal planning.
And for the record, this will actually save you money in the long run, which then allows you to purchase the highest-quality food possible.
But nevertheless, it can seem intimidating and daunting. I want to take some of that stress away for you today.
Real Food Meal Planning Using Staple Foods in 8 Steps
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Know how often you go to the grocery store (or Amazon! Or better yet, Thrive Market!)
My meal planning syncs up with the number of times per week I’m at the grocery store. These days, I go far less than when we lived in California because we don’t even have a grocery store in the town we live in. Therefore, I’m on a 4-6-day meal planning schedule.
A 3-day meal planning schedule works better for those who eat a ton of fresh fruits and vegetables, or for those who don’t eat that many fresh fruits and vegetables but like to buy them in larger bulk. 7 days can work as well, it’s just a little more difficult in my experience. I don’t know about you, but I have no clue what I’ll be hungry for a week from now.
BTW – need more online shopping options? I have a whole list of Online Shopping HERE.
Make a list of the foods you love/foods you eat a lot
This is a simple step because it’s pretty obvious once you start writing it out. If you’re in a period of some deep gut healing, this might also dictate your food list.
There was a time when I was super meticulous about different things all 5 of us were eating. I had a list of foods for each person, and then I’d circle the common denominators so I didn’t have to make 3 different meals.
Take the main foods from that list (i.e. eggs, a meat, fish, etc.) and craft your snacks and meals around it
In my case, I do this for the 4-6 day meal planning. If you aren’t creative, then find simple recipes online using those main ingredients. For example, say you love turkey and you need ideas of what to do with it. Go to your favorite recipe websites, find the search bar and type in said ingredient.
For example, spaghetti squash. HERE are several ideas for spaghetti squash that pop up on my site. (Need to do this by dietary restriction? My blog contains ideas for all Special Diets and/or the ability to drill down even further to entire categories like Gluten Free.) You can make this step even easier by grabbing a copy of my book, The Leaky Gut Meal Plan.
Once you find the simple recipes you like, jot down the other ingredients you’ll need to finish that recipe
For example, my Root Vegetable Vegan Buddha Bowl. You’d add to your grocery shopping list: sweet potatoes, beets, carrots, onion and avocado. You already have rice, salt, and pepper, so no need to add those.
(Don’t want all those ingredients? Cut the ones you don’t want to use, as long as they are not critical to the recipe.)
Organize your week
Once your recipes have been crafted and grocery shopping list created, simply place each item next to the day/meal you want it for.
Buy said groceries
Many of your ingredients can be found at bulk stores like Costco, too, so pay attention to that when planning. A penny saved is a penny earned. So profound.
HERE are other grocery stores and ideas for all you small town-ers like we are.
Make said meals
Isn’t this the best part? Making and enjoying your creations.
Rinse and repeat
And then do it all over again.
I enjoy this simple process. I know that not everyone does.
But real food meal planning using staple foods has saved me time, energy, and money.
It also was a contributing factor for healing my gut.
If you’d like some hand holding through this process (aka. I’ll show you how to cook via videos and teach through live lectures), consider taking my 30-Day Gut Reset Course (produced by Clean Eating Magazine).
Click HERE to reserve your spot now plus you can use my code SKHSAVE20 to save 20% at checkout.
Questions? Ask away. I’m happy to add more to this post to help you in the best way possible.
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You will heal. I will help.