Meal Planning, Organization, The Home

Meal Planning Binder set up, and What’s in Mine

This Meal Plan Binder has everything I need to plan my menus and shopping list! It was a blast to put together, and I’m so happy I get to share it with you! You can get a more in depth look at my 7-step simple meal planning process. Grab your supplies and set up your meal planning binder. This too will perfect your meal planning process!

First of all, here is my list of Meal Planning Binder Supplies:

  1. 2-inch 3 ring binder
  2. Box of clear plastic sheet protectors
  3. Package of cute dividers (I needed 8)

You’ll also need all of your favorite recipes and cookbooks, and a printer and copy paper for printing any recipes.

That’s it! You can add any supplies you need to yours. Some people use a pencil pouch, however I ALWAYS have a pen somewhere, so didn’t think it was needed. I spent less than $40 at Office Max.

I love using my meal planning binder

Here’s What’s inside My Binder:

FRONT COVER

I use the inside cover pocket to hold all of the recipes that I am currently using for my menu. When I need it, I just pull them out and slide them in there so they are easy to find when I cook. At the end of the week, I just place them back in the correct spot when I am gathering the next week’s recipes.

MEAL PLANNING

The first section is the most exciting section, and the most used. This one has a lot of goodies!

MY GROCERY LIST

This is my own list of items that we pretty much keep on hand all of the time, therefore this is what I use when shopping. I usually end up writing a lot of extras in the margins for things that are specific to a recipe, but for the most part, it’s very thorough. I’ve been using this list for about 10yrs! Take a look at my list here.

BLANK WEEKLY MEAL PLAN SHEET

I print these weekly meal planning sheets and keep several inside. when I sit down to meal plan, it’s all right where I need it! You can see my 2 Week Meal Planning list here.

MEALS -AT-A- GLANCE

This shows every meal in my binder, and meals I have other places too, like Pinterest, or in a cookbook. This tool is amazing for quick planning. Everything we cook on a regular basis is right in front of me to pick from. I can worry about tracking recipes down later! check it out!

HOME INVENTORY SHEETS

This may seem a little OCD, I know, and maybe it is. But think about it! When you sit and stare at your cupboards or pantry looking for what you’re out of this can help out a ton. If we’re out of mayo, for example, I don’t keep an empty jar sitting in the fridge for the day I need to write it down. NO! every sensible human will toss it! So, when it’s gone and you don’t see it in your fridge you may forget to replace it.

Inventory-Full

This inventory helps out with having a very thorough list! I go through and glance at this list when prepping my grocery list to flag myself if we are out of something, and don’t want to forget to refill. Just like an inventory count! Plus, my kids don’t tell me we are low on something, they tell me when it is gone! We all know things like deodorant, toothpaste, and feminine products or toilet paper, you don’t want to run out of! I have a page for our fridge, freezer, pantry, and bathroom and cleaning supplies.

FREEZER MEAL PLANS

This little section is where I put my freezer meal planning lists.  I put these together to help when I’m picking up stuff to make a batch of freezer meals. Now I’m able to pull out a pre-made list with everything I need to get the job done! Check out the freezer meals on my Pinterest board. You can read about my secrets with freezer cooking here!

Organizing Recipes

After this beauty of a section, I have all of my recipe’s. I broke them down into sections by what type of meat they have. Usually, I meal plan starting with what meats I have. Since that is usually the most expensive part of my shopping. That way I am only buying what I need and continue to use what I have too. It helps to keep the budget down when you go through the tail end of your groceries and try and come up with ways to use things you have rather than buy more. Sometimes, I can come up with a whole weeks’ worth of meals! Not gourmet by any means, But definitely healthier and cheaper than takeout!

In the very back I have some extra printed lists and plenty of empty sheet protectors so I can keep adding recipes I try and like. Be sure to add them to your meals-at-a-glance though.

The Perfect System

This has been one of the most fun and helpful projects I’ve done in a long time. It has been so rewarding to use it every week! I’m so happy to have you make a meal planning binder too using this system. Want the printables for yours? Subscribe to my e-mail list at the top of the page, and I’ll send you the password to my resources page. You’ll then have access to all of my great tools too!

I’m thinking about adding another section for household cleaning and projects too. Maybe this will be a great way to keep on top of some tasks better!

Do you use a meal planning binder? How has it helped you? Leave a comment below!

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Life-Changing Freezer Meals

Budget Friendly Family Favorite Meals

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