Planning Meals for a Family

Janis Hunter
Home & Garden Information Center

Are you part of the generation of adults and children who have grown up in restaurants and fast food eateries? You will find that learning to plan weekly menus and eating meals at home has many advantages, including:

  • It gives the cook control over the ingredients and the portion sizes; therefore, foods prepared at home are usually healthier and tastier than restaurant and fast foods.
  • It saves you trips to the grocery store and lets you buy only what you need.
  • It saves more money on your food budget than any other food preparation skill, allowing you to buy other necessities with the money saved.
  • It relieves the last-minute stress of wondering what to cook for dinner.
  • It eliminates wasted time and energy frantically searching through the pantry for a certain food.
  • It provides a better variety of meal choices so you don’t serve the same foods too often.
  • It eliminates waiting for a food to thaw.
  • It uses up leftovers before they spoil.

Making a weekly meal plan is easier than you may think. Although it takes a little time up front, it can save time in the long run. HGIC 4200, Planning Meals for a Family contains a few easy steps to menu planning. It also provides meal planning tips, such as how to give meals more plate appeal and short cuts for serving healthful foods that are fast and easy to prepare.

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