When you’re learning how to meal plan, finding a printable meal planner is the first step to making a meal plan that works for your family.
Using a designated meal planner is the perfect way to stay organized and make sure you actually cook what you have in your home (and what your picky kids will eat). Whether you choose to use a weekly or monthly meal planner, or even a meal planning app or service, writing your meal plans on paper will set you up for success!
Free Weekly Meal Planner with grocery list
A weekly meal planner is great to use if your schedule changes from week to week or if you like to plan your meals based on the sales at your local grocery store.
In a weekly meal planner, look for one with space to write your grocery list, as well as large blocks so you can plan ALL the meals for the week, including breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks.
This will help your entire family know what to expect for meals (and stop the endless “what’s for dinner” questions).
Sign up to get my free meal planner template below. In addition to my weekly meal planner, you’ll also get a monthly meal planner and a printable page to record your family’s favorite recipes.
Save the favorite meals list for easy reference and ideas to add to your meal plan.
Monthly Meal Planner template
Monthly meal planners are ideal if you have a consistent schedule, like sports practice every Tuesday and Wednesday during the month.
Monthly meal plans are also great to use if you like to plan themed days, like taco Tuesdays or pizza Fridays.
On busy days, make sure to plan simple meals, or better yet, plan a slow cooker recipe so your meal basically cooks itself.
Get my monthly meal planner template, in addition to 50+ slow cooker and Instant Pot recipes, plus a handy place to organize all your meal planning and kitchen worksheets in the Organized Kitchen Binder.
You’ll also get a printable weekly planning page and a sheet to record your family’s favorite meals so you can quickly create your meal plan based on what your family will actually eat.
Freezer meal planning Worksheet
Freezer cooking is such a great way to plan ahead and have a huge supply of ready-to-go meals.
Freezer meals are great for emergencies, when you’re having a surgery (or giving birth to another human being), or when you just don’t feel like meal prepping.
They’re also great to take to a friend or neighbor when they’re in need.
The trick to making a freezer meal is to properly label EVERYTHING. Include the recipe name and contents, cooking instructions, and date. Also, make a note of anything additional, like pasta, which may need to be prepared separately.
Organize and simplify your freezer meal prep with this printable freezer meal planning worksheet:
How to Organize Your Meal Plans
As you continue to meal plan, you might want to save and reuse your old printable meal plans, favorite recipes, and any meal prep hacks and notes that you’ve acquired over the years.
Here’s how to organize meal planning.
In addition, get my Organized Kitchen Binder to make organizing your kitchen printables easier.