How Meal Planning Made My Life Easier

Meal planning has been a struggle of mine. I hate the time it takes to scour the Internet and cookbooks for new recipes and then make a grocery list. With a toddler it feels like such an arduous task. Eating mostly a plant-based diet at home can leave us in a bit of a rut with our meals and lately our eating habits has been less than stellar. My body really feels the difference when I’m fueling it with junk. I needed a change and decided to look for meal plans online. It was disappointing to find that most of the meals on the plans I found were meat dishes.

Enter Meal Mentor. I came upon it while participating in a 100k step challenge through Happy Herbivore. I have two of the Happy Herbivore cookbooks, so I figured why not purchase the 7-day Family Meal Plan and give it a try? I purchased my first meal plan last week, and this week I decided to dive in and purchase a premium membership which signs you up for 4 weeks of meal plans.

Meal Mentor has made my life so much easier! I love not having to think about what meals to make. The plans provide a make ahead prep sheet, an ingredient prep sheet, and and lists the cooking order for the meals which makes it easier to cook  or prep some or all of the meals at once. It also has a pre-made grocery shopping list that I can simply print out. The recipes are easy to follow and are not complicated. I love the breakfast recipes because I was in desperate need of some new, easy, healthy breakfast options. Since it is a plant-based meal plan, there are no animal ingredients. We aren’t 100% vegan 100% of the time, but I like that the meal plans are vegan because it gives us the flexibility to add in some cheese on certain recipes if my husband or I want.

So far I have found what works best for me is to save the plans to Google Drive. Before grocery shopping, we clean out the fridge and figure out what ingredients we have that can be incorporated into that week’s meal plan. After grocery shopping, I figure out what meal we’ll have on what day based on what ingredients will most likely spoil first. Yesterday I was able to make that night’s dinner, prep all the vegetables for a meal later in the week, and get the patties made for some falafel burgers we are having tonight – all in roughly 45 minutes. I felt so proud of myself!

The meal plans have made such a difference. My family is eating healthy meals, and the plans save me time and have reduced my stress. If you are interested in trying out the meal plan, you can try a 3-day sample plan to see if you like it. You can also visit the website to see what meals are on the current week’s meal plan and find a plethora of information about what Meal Mentor is and how it works. If you do sign up for the premium membership, you will be able to download both the family and individual meal plans, and will have access to resources like the Meal Plan Starter Kit and Easy Meals – 6 Ingredients or Less.

Cinnamon rolls without the sugar coma that usually follows! Super easy to make, yummy, and great for breakfast.

Cinnamon rolls for breakfast without the sugar coma that usually follows!

Do you use a meal plan or create your own? What has worked for you and your family?