Home > gluten free, menu plan > How to Menu Plan

How to Menu Plan

November 5, 2012

How to Menu Plan

Last week I shared some great websites that have gluten free menu plans, I thought this week I would share how to menu plan. I actually thought I had done this ages ago but when I went looking for it I couldn’t find anything! Whoops silly me, I shall rectify that now.

How I Menu Plan

I actually like doing weekly menu plans. I have tried monthly before but it just didn’t work for me. That’s half the battle and fun is finding what works for you.

I love recipe books, cook books, recipe magazines, recipe websites, blogs and cooking shows. I draw inspiration from all of these and often have recipes pinned, bookmarked, clipped in evernote and torn from magazines and popped into a file.

Then every week when it’s time to menu plan, I pop onto one of these sites or delve into one of the books and find inspiration for the week. If I find more inspiration than days I will list them in my diary for the next week to try them then.

I pop the meals into my diary and then write a shopping list. Most if not all of my meals have to be easily prepared as during the week is always busy for us.

Here are some other tips:

  • always have one night spare for leftovers, or get your own, or take away
  • consider slow cooker meals all year round. They are soo simple to put on and during summer they can let you avoid the heat of the oven being on
  • if you are struggling for ideas, consider letting the kids pick a meal. My eldest loves picking one meal a week and the added bonus is he’ll eat it as it was his choice

Gluten Free Menu Planning

Of course I have the added bonus of figuring out gluten free meals for me. I think it is quite easy making meals gluten free. Often it is swapping out ingredients to make sure I have me friendly ones.

Examples of easily swapped ingredients

  • Stock – I use massell stock powder to make up my own.
  • Tortilla’s – I use corn tortillas
  • Pasta – gluten free pasta is easily found in the health food section, I like pretty much any of them
  • Pasta Sauce – either I make my own or use a gluten free friendly one – check labels
  • Flour – quite simple, I use a gluten free flour
  • Oats – ah I have yet to find an actual swap for this so I tend to avoid recipes that have oats in them
  • Breadcrumbs – I use a variety of things here, depending on what I have on hand, I’ll use gluten free breadcrumbs, or rice crumbs or even crushed up gluten free chips. I have used polenta and quniona.

As I usually blog my menu plans I can easily look back on what we have had, I also mark them in my diary but there are many many free printables around that you can use and keep them in a folder. You’ll notice that many of these have space for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner which some people do. I don’t but it’s all what works for you.

Here are some of my favourites:

Do you menu plan? Does it help you?

Image courtesy of winnond / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Categories: gluten free, menu plan Tags:
  1. Mary Preston
    November 6, 2012 at 8:46 am

    Weekly works well for me too.

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