Meal Planning Made Easy

Planning healthy meals ahead of time can help you stick to a healthy eating style. If you’re new to meal planning, start small and work up to more.

Map out your meals.

Outline meals you plan to eat for the week and use it as a guide. Be sure to list beverages and snacks too!

Find balance.

If you have veggies, dairy, and protein at one meal, include fruit and grains in the next to cover all 5 food groups.

Vary protein foods.

Choose a variety of protein foods throughout the week. If you have chicken one day, try seafood, beans, lean meat, or eggs other days.

Make a grocery list.

Start by listing ingredients for meals you plan to make. Cross off items you already have on hand.

Love your leftovers.

Prepare enough of a dish to eat multiple times during the week. Making leftovers part of your plan can save money and time.

Adapted from the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion’s Web site.