Ok, so you’re in the grocery store, you see something that would go great in a specific meal (that you didn’t originally plan for, because OBVIOUSLY you only shop after planning all the meals…..just like I always….ok fine, sometimes…do!) Anyhoo…..so you have a bunch of stuff in your cart that you don’t really have a plan for. So now you get it home, start putting it all away with the best of intentions. Healthy smoothies, prebaked breakfasts, and super fancy but ‘needs prep ahead of time’ dinners. Then your week gets underway, and of course time flies, so you pull out the hot dogs, or make some simple sandwiches and forget about some of the other good intentioned groceries you bought?? That spinach looked way better 6 days ago…wait it’s already been 6 days??
Ok, well basically, long story short, I have a bit of a solution for you. But it does require a bit of work.
So first, invest in some sort of magnetic notepad, or whiteboard for your fridge!
When you get home, with all your groceries, BEFORE you even put ANY of them away….unless it’s freezer things I guess…Jot down some of the stuff you bought onto your magnetic list.
You bought some ice cream? Add it to your notepad/whiteboard! Bought some chicken you have to cook/marinade? Put it on the list with the name of the marinade beside it! Bought some fruit or veggies you don’t normally get? Add them to the list too! You could focus on the groceries that expire soon or that you don’t always think about eating. If you have a tendency of turning your celery into soup…in the bottom of your crisper…then it’s a great idea to add that too. Think of your purchased groceries, if there is anything that you don’t generally eat up on a daily basis, it’s a good candidate for the list.
Hear me out!
I know it sounds like all this is a repeat of the detailed meal plan you already wrote out (like we already discussed above!!) but just in case you’re flying by the seat of your pants, like I *ahem* rarely….ok pretty often do…then at least you can come up with some meals on the fly!
I break my list down by type of meal, because there are some things I buy that are more tailored to lunch let’s say, more than dinner. So I try to add the things that I may forget I bought, or the things that are tucked away in a different fridge or freezer so that I know to use it up before it goes bad.
It’s almost like reverse meal planning.
You are definitely more likely to spend more money at the store when shopping without a plan, but hey, everyone has to do it sometimes! At least this way, you are less likely to waste that money by throwing it all out after finding it in the back of the cupboard, fridge or freezer!!