Does this sound familiar?
After a long day at work or taking care of your children, you rush into the kitchen at 6:00PM. You forgot to take something out of the freezer to thaw. Or maybe you did, but you have no idea what to do with that package of boneless, skinless chicken breasts or pork chops thawing on your counter. What sides do you pair with it? You stare blankly into your pantry as your spice and condiment bottles stare blankly back. Sometimes, the question “what’s for dinner?” is such a pain!
Even though I love both baking and cooking dearly, meal planning is often stressful for me, too. There are many, many times after a long day of work that I come home to an evening full of activities, and cooking is not something I feel like doing. Since I desire to cook healthy meals for my husband and I while minimizing stress and eating out, I have often turned to meal planning tools to help.
After trying many, I finally feel like I have found one that I can stick with that works really well for me. It’s called Plan to Eat (www.plantoeat.com). The wonderful thing about Plan to Eat is that it’s completely custom. Instead of generating meal plans for you, you input your own recipes and then you can drag and drop them onto a calendar that will also generate a grocery list for you. You can plan meals for the week, two weeks, month, or even the whole year if you are so inclined! I love that it gives me total control. I have tried other services in the past, but was frustrated with only being able to eat what they told me to eat. I realize that for some, that works perfectly and I totally get it. But for me, those types of meal/menu planning services did not offer me the flexibility and utility I desired.
Plan to Eat is very user friendly and it doesn’t take long to get used to the interface. They also provide detailed instructions on how to use it if you need help. It is also very affordable – $39 for 1 year or $4.95 per month.
I love that it gives me one, central place to store all my recipes. If I try something from a cookbook or blog, I quickly load it into Plan to Eat for future use. You can also add ratings and comments to your recipes, so you can easily reference the ones that you enjoyed most later. Not to mention, you can share recipes with your friends on the website as well.
Sure, there are many weeks where I fall down on my menu planning and we end up eating PB&Js or Chik-Fil-A, but overall, Plan to Eat has been an invaluable tool that has helped me greatly! They offer a free seven day trial, so you have nothing to lose!
Plan to Eat has no idea who I am, nor do they know of my blog. I wrote this post simply because I love their website and wanted to pass my find along to you in the hope that it may make your life a little less stressed. I gladly pay for my Plan to Eat subscription with my own money because I love it and am in no way being compensated by them for writing this. If you do decide to join Plan to Eat and would like to list me as your referral or share recipes with me there, that would be lovely! My username is sarahjunebakes.