Monday, November 29, 2010

My First Ever Month-Long Menu Plan!


Until now, I have always done a weekly menu plan. Sometimes that alone can take me 30 minutes (especially if I'm having a blank-minded moment). So I've always been a little flabbergasted when ladies tell me they plan their menus an entire month at a time.

December is almost here. And even though we like to keep Christmas simple in our home, it's still a full month. So I decided to give monthly menu planning a try and see if it saves me time/hassle.

Can you believe it only took me around 40 minutes to plan our dinners for the month? I was pleasantly surprised! You should give this a shot one month and see what you think. :)

All of the meals planned for the month are fairly simple, and they are all (with the exception of the Crockpot Salsa Chicken) meals we have enjoyed before. With the exception of our two sushi meals, every other meal on the menu is freezer friendly. I will probably be doing a freezer cooking day early this week, which will save me even more time this month!

Here's my December plan for dinner at our house:

(Soup Night)
(Pizza or Date night)
(Fish or Steak)

Crockpot Salsa Chicken/ Refried Beans/ Rice

Pizza with tomatoes and peppers

Lasagna/rolls/ salad


Enchiladas/ guacamole

Pepperoni Pizza

Steak/ sweet potatoes/salad

Spaghetti/ Green Beans

Mozzarella Stuffed Chicken Breasts / Spinach

Pumpkin Soup/broccoli


Crockpot Salsa Chicken/ Refried Beans/ Rice

Parmesan Tilapia/ peas and corn

Chicken Alfredo/ salad


{Christmas Break}

{Christmas Break}

{Christmas Break}

{Christmas Break}

Mozzarella Stuffed Chicken Breasts / Spinach

Pumpkin Soup/ broccoli

New Year/Birthday Dinner

I would love to know if you've ever given monthly menu planning a try in your home and how it has worked for you!

Linked to Menu Plan Monday.


  1. Hi Alicia,
    Hope you had a wonderful weekend! Never made a monthly mealplan, for me a weekly plan works out fine.
    Love Amelie

  2. I've tried it before and really liked it; I found it really helped with my planning as I would do one big monthly shop as well and then just buy fresh produce week by week.

    Good luck with yours!

  3. I have not done a monthly plan before, but was thinking about doing one starting with December. Your menu looks great! Visiting from Menu Plan Monday.

  4. Great job! I did a month long menu plan, once. It worked out pretty well as I bought ALL the groceries except fresh product for the month. That saved me a ton of time at the grocery store. Only thing that happened is that our schedule changed occasionally and I had to adapt to that. Sometimes we ended up eating just hotdogs because we only had minutes for supper. My month plan actually stretched out to about 5 1/2 weeks. We also ended up with more leftovers so we would have leftover night more often than I had planned for.
    Let us know how it goes!

  5. I have done a monthly meal plan before! I like doing it because I know it will actually last more than a month with unexpected dinners out and last minute meal changes. Nothing wrong with that and that's less meal planning I need to do for the next month! Right now I'm sticking with weekly meal plans, but may do a monthly one for January!

  6. I love your plan for the month. When my children were small I planned for the month. It just made it easier. Thank you for sharing and have a good week.

  7. I love doing monthly planning. I make up a plan based on the season, then I use it for three months. This way I can make the food once and freeze two extra portions for the next times we eat it. We usually eat the same few things over and over again anyways, but with this planning method, we only have tacos (or spaghetti or lasagna etc...) once a month. I think you will love doing the monthly planning!

  8. Great job! It's not that hard and I find it super helpful when doing freezer cooking. I'll be posting our December meal plan on the 1st. But I have a feeling I'll be making a few changes, it's always bound to happen :)

  9. Thanks for all your feedback, ladies!

    Amanda, that's awesome about your 3 month meal plan! I'm going to try on the monthly one for a bit and then maybe I could tackle something like that. :D

    Changes always do happen, and I'm totally ok with that. I'm hoping that having this plan in place will help me have more time for holiday baking!!! *excited*

  10. I use to do month long menu planning and really loved it. But when we moved at the end of last year, it wasn't feasible to plan much and then we lived with a family and we shared cooking responsibilities. After that I was out of the habit and haven't gone back. But you've given me a renewed desire to try it!

  11. Love your meal plan!! I used to do monthly meal planning but have not tried it again since having kids...I may have to try it again, love the time saving idea!!

  12. this is absolutely awesome! i've only done two weeks at a time. inspiring!

  13. Wow wow wow! I've never created a month! Very inspiring! :) :)
    xo Marissa

  14. Bravo! Monthly menu planning intimidates me so it's nice to see you included some recipes more than once (like alternating Mondays). That I probably could do. And since I write down what we've eaten when on a calender, I could just repeat, for example, the month of June for the month of December. Thanks for the inspiration!

  15. Great plan. Every now annd then I do a menu plan. Anymore I just do weekly and search for new meals. I"m addicted to trying out new recipes.

  16. I really like this idea! one month at a time!

  17. I attempt (with moderate success) a 3-week menu, with 5 dinner plans per week (allowing for left-over and eating away from home nights). As a rule it is a flexible menu plan. I use a printout designed for a weekly menu composed of breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but I use each vertical block for each week. I like this printout because it includes an area for a shopping list (I keep a running grocery list - so that when I need to go to the store I have an idea of the necessities). This is the printout I use:

    (I printout 6 pages at a time - enough for 18 weeks; I keep it in my menu ideas folder.)
    Thanks for sharing your idea.

  18. Great menu planning, I have enough trouble just doing a week, having to take into account after school clubs, husband working, and kids social life....

  19. Can I just come over to your house for dinner instead;)

  20. Thank you Alicia! I love how you organized your meals into the calendar-like format! Awesome! You inspired me to try a month long meal plan and I tackled it! Thank you, thank you, thank you :)


I love your comments. :) I know your time is precious, so I appreciate the time you spend reading and giving feedback.

Please be respectful of others and kind with your words.