Tuesday, September 05, 2006

WFMW - Master Meal List


I've been planning our meals for over 20 years now, but so many times over those years, I'd sit down and think, "I have no idea what to fix this week!" So I began a list of our favorite meals to draw from. I divided my list into Beef, Ground Beef, Chicken, Pork, Meatless, and Soups main dishes, Breakfast dishes, and Lunch dishes. I'm also considering adding side dishes, breads, and desserts, but having the main dishes listed has been a tremendous help just in itself. Beside each dish, if I still need the recipe, I write where I can find it - book and page number (I have lots of Taste of Home magazines). This master meal list is a lifesaver when I'm busy or just can't think (pretty common for me!).

This list can be as simple as writing it down on notebook paper to as complex as making tables in Word (that is complex to me!). I did mine just as a list in a Word document and then sorted each category alphabetically by highlighting the text I wanted to sort, then clicking on Tables, Sort, then choosing Paragraphs, Text, and Ascending (which means A-Z). I'm not very experienced in using Word to make fancy documents, so I just did the simplest and fastest thing I could think of. I'd much rather type than write by hand. My main dish master list works for me!

For more WFMW tips, or to contribute one of your own, visit Shannon at Rocks in My Dryer.

11 comments:

Happymama said...

The food list is such a great idea. And WOW to 20 years! I really should give this a try.

~Kristi

Mom2fur said...

I keep my recipes in a file, by category. But I like the idea of making up a 'favorites' main dish list! I think I'll do that after work today and keep it in my household binder. That way I can refer to it when making up menus. I can still make plenty of new things...but the old reliables will be right there for me to see. (Think I'll do this for all our favorites!)
Thanks for the inspiration!

deb said...

Susan, good idea to have a main list of foods your family likes. Especially when a mind goes absolutely blank!

I keep a menu on the computer of what I fixed for who and the date. For example: Traylor Family I fixed such and such for the company meal. That way, if they ever visit again I won't fix the exact same thing.

That list is also a good way to go back and look at what main dishes I combined with side dishes and pull ideas from that. So it can work two different ways for me.

Some folks are amazed that I remember what I fixed for them 3 years before. It's not me, but my trusty computer!!

Mama Duck said...

Great idea! Happy Wednesday - our tip is up as well!

Overwhelmed! said...

I'm always looking for ways to make mealtimes easier. Thanks for sharing this one!

I've posted a WFMW baptism gift tip. Stop by and take a peek. :)

Full Contact, Savior-centric Livin said...

I need to stop being lazy and make a plan to begin with!

This sounds wonderful!

lrlwreath said...

Great idea!! So organized =)

Barbara H. said...

I've done something like that, just a quick one on notebook paper. One addition is that I put to the side of the name of the recipe any unusual ingredient that I don't have on hand as a staple. If I am looking at the list ahead of time, that helps me to remember that ingredient on my grocery list. If I am looking at the last minute for something to make NOW, it helps me to avoid choosing that one only to discover in the middle of it I need a certain ingredient.

Anonymous said...

I had also made out a list like you did by type of meat etc but added 2 other divisions...one for those Very Quick meals that you always seem to have the ingredients for...[that way when your day gets turned upside down or ? and you are out of time for your planned meal this list will help your tired brain remember those Very easy and Quick meals your family loves]. The other is listing the meals we like from other countries..Chinese, Italian, German or Mexican and such. I have just found at times we get a hankering for something from another country and this list is a fast way to see what we cook from other places. Yes you are right! It is such a good way to organize your meals and help the cook!! Thanks for sharing your ideas with us!

Penny said...

I keep a master list of holiday meals. The meal itself + who was there and how much of each was used..such as 2 15 oz cans corn or 4 cans beans and 16 lb turkey or 12 lb ham etc to get an idea next time of how much to buy{if there was plenty of leftovers don't buy more for the same crowd next time} List also family preferences as far as pops..or decaf coffee only etc. can be added on this card.

Jess Harvey said...

Great ideas! I have tried all kinds of meal planning things...not sure why I never thought of this :)