Monday, August 27, 2012

Meal Planning Day 1

I decide what to make for dinner the same way I decide what to wear for the day - whatever I'm in the mood for. I am determined to save money and be more efficient and the easiest way to do that is cut down my spending - duh.

After I decide what I'm in the mood to eat, I rummage through my pantry, fridge and freezer to see what ELSE I need to satisfy my craving. This usually ends up with me at the store to buy ONE AVOCADO and I walk out the door $75 later. No bueno. I think just cutting down the frequency of my visits to the store alone will save money.

So, meal planning. I've done A LOT of research. I watched a few video's on YouTube, read lots and lots of articles, read a book, searched the web - pretty well loaded my brain full of information on meal planning.

I'm not going to start actually making the meals/buying the food until Sept 1. I wanted to give myself some time to get organized - and organization IS THE KEY!

SO, MEAL PLANNING DAY ONE:
Do an inventory of your pantry, refrigerator and freezer. I'm going to make it even easier on you than it was for me - just go ahead and copy these lists and then delete or add items that you have or rotate frequently.

These lists are "complete" for me. A MASTER LIST. They have listed all of the items I currently have in my food stock, but also have things on the list that I do not have in stock. So - you know what you have and what you don't have. How do I differentiate between the two? Easy. I printed off these lists and laminated them. Then I took a dry erase marker and put a dot next to all the items I DON'T have.

So, when I look at a recipe I can quickly see whether or not I have what I need. Using the dry erase marker on the laminated paper is pretty genius if I say so myself. When you buy and item or run out of an item, you can easily wipe away the dot to show you have it in stock - or add a dot to an item you need to restock. Unagi.

I divided the food into these 5 groups: Spices, Canned Goods, Pantry Items, Freezer Items & Refrigerator Items.

Here we go!

Spices

Allspice ground

Allspice whole

Basil

Basil leaves

Bay leaves

Beef cubes

Black pepper ground

Black peppercorns whole

Cayenne

Celery salt

Celery seed

Chili powder

Chili powder hot mexican

Chipotle chili powder

Cinnamon ground

Cinnamon stick

Cloves ground

Cumin ground

Curry powder

Dill weed

Fennel seed

Garlic powder

Garlic salt

Ginger ground

Lemon pepper

Mustard ground

Mustard superfine ground

Nutmeg ground

Old Bay

Onions minced

Onion powder

Oregano

Paprika

Paprika smoked

Parsley flakes

Poppy seeds

Red pepper crushed

Rosemary leaves

Salad supreme

Salt table

Salt kosher

Season all

Seasoned salt Lawry's

Sesame seeds

Thyme leaves


Specialty Seasonings

Emeril's Original Essence

Herbed Seafood Rub

HV Ranch mix (2)

HV Buttermilk ranch mix (2)

Johnny's garlic seasoning

Montreal Steak Seasoning

Schultz's premium seasoning and rub (sm & lg)

Sun Dried Tomato Herb (mix w oil - dip bread)

Taco seasoning



Canned Goods


Beans

Baked

Black

Garbonzo

Great Northern

Kidney

Pinto

Refried


Protein

Albacore Tuna

Chicken

Clams


Soup

Chicken stock

Cream of chicken

Cream of mushroom


Tomato

Chipotle in adobo

Diced

Rotel

Paste

Sauce

Tomato juice


Freezer Items


Protein

Bacon

Beef carne asada

Beef ground

Beef steaks

Black bean burgers

Chicken

Pork chops

Pork tenderloin

Pork Ribs

Sausage

Turkey ground


Frozen Dinners

Chicken patties

Dumplings

Pizza


Seafood

Chilean Seabass

Halibut

Salmon

Shrimp

Tilapia


Veg

California mix

Classic mix

Corn

Normandy mix

Potatoes O’Brian

Potatoes shredded hash

Potatoes fries

Spinach

Stir Fry Mix




Pantry Items


Backstock

Franks RedHot

Peppercinis

Salsa verde

Soy sauce

Sweet Heat marinade


Baking Items

Baking powder

Baking soda

Flour bread

Flour whole wheat

Cornmeal

Cornstarch

Corn syrup

Crisco

Evaporated milk

Gelatine

Mapleine

Milk chocolate chips

Molasses

Peppermint baking chips

Unsweetened cocoa

Sugar brown

Sugar powdered

Sugar white

Vanilla

Vanilla pudding mix

Yeast - fridge


Bread

Bagels

Baguettes

Flatbread

French Bread

Hamburger buns

Hot dog buns

Rhodes rolls

Rhodes loaf

Taco shells

Tortillas

Wheat bread


Fruit

Mandarin oranges

Pineapples


Miscellaneous

Dried Cranberries

Knorr's Veg Mix

Onion soup mix


Nuts

Almonds sliced

Almonds smoked

Almonds slivered

Cashews

Macadamia

Pecans

Pecans roasted

Pistachios

Sunflower seeds

Walnuts


Oils

Canola oil

Olive oil

Olive, Grapeseed mix

Sesame seed oil

Toasted sesame seed


Pasta

Lasagna

Penne or the like

Whole wheat spaghetti


Rice

Brown Rice

Jasmine Rice

Rice a Roni


Sauces

Alfredo

Marinara

Pesto

Vodka sauce


Soups

Creamy Potato

Sick soup

Tortilla

Toppers

Croutons

Fried Onions

Onion Ring batter

Panko bread crumbs

Shake n bake

Tortilla Strips


Vegetables

Bean sprouts

Artichokes

Water chestnuts

Green beans


Vinegars

Apple Cider Vinegar

Balsamic vinegar

White Vinegar

Red wine vinegar

Rice vinegar



Refrigerator Items


Acidic Elements

Lime juice

Lemon juice

Soy Sauce


Cheese

Bleu Cheese

Cheddar

Cream Cheese

Colby Jack

Feta

Goat

Havarti

Mozzarella

Mozzarella string cheese

Muenster

Parmesan shredded

Parmesan grated

Pepper Jack

Swiss


Condiments

BBQ sauce

Gray Poupon

Ketchup

Mayonnaise

Pickles

Tabasco

W sauce

Yellow mustard


Dairy

Butter

Cream heavy

Cream whipping

Half and Half

Sour Cream


Dressings & Sauces

Balsamic vinaigrette

Horseradish

Poppyseed dressing

Ranch dressing

Raspberry d&m

Roasted Raspberry Chipotle Jelly

Roasted Pineapple Habanero jelly

Tartar sauce


Mexican

Enchilada sauce

Green sauce

Salsa

Salsa Verde


Protein

Bacon bits

Eggs

Ham deli

Ham diced

Hotdogs

Roast beef

Turkey


Veg

Asparagus

Avocado

Beets

Broccoli

Brussells Sprouts

Cabbage green

Cabbage red

Carrots

Celery

Corn

Cucumbers

Garlic whole

Garlic minced

Green Beans

Jicama

Lettuce

Mushrooms

Onions red

Onions yellow

Onions green

Peppers bell

Peppers sweet mini

Peppers jalapeno

Potatoes

Shallot

Snap peas

Snow peas

Squash

Spinach

Sweet Potato

Tomatoes Beefsteak

Tomatoes Cherry

Tomatoes Grape

Tomatoes Roma

Tomatoes Sundried

Zucchini




So there you have it! Your first assignment on the road to saving money, being organized and enjoying delicious meals!!


Stay tuned for tomorrow's assignment.

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