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I meal-plan to a) save money (I don't 'do' food/money waste) b) shop with a list, so less time in the supermarket/save money c) I'm a 'list' addict...

So my plan for next week...

Mon (FD) Tesco Pepper Stir Fry and maybe a pork loin medallion from freezer (depending on how hungry I am)

Tue Lunch Houmous and lettuce, cherry tomatoes, avocado lurking in fridge? Dinner Lamb loin chop from freezer, celeriac chips (half a celeriac in fridge), veg (mix of what's in fridge and some from freezer)

Wed lunch as Tue. Dinner Chicken thigh and/or drumstick from freezer, veg as Tue

Thu (FD) 2x venison sausages from freezer, veg from fridge/freezer

F/S/S/ during the winter I eat dinner at BF's, so out of my control (but I usually end up cooking as he'll go and get in the shower rather than turn the oven on!) In the summer he spends the weekend at mine/I cook.

Most of the meat/fish in my freezer is 'reduced to clear', and the fridge too if possible. I do include snacks on normal days - nuts, dark choc etc, in case you think I'm eating under TDEE.

Please feel free to share your thoughts of my plan, or your own (for inspiration) :grin: !
I shop the same as you @madmittens. We always shop at the best time to catch the lady with the reducing gun going round the shelves. We have had some marvellous bargains that way.

I don't plan as rigidly as you do. But I will have a list of whats in the freezer and cupboards, the protein parts anyway, on my cupboard and it gets rubbed out as its used. I try to have one week a month where the freezer is emptied rather than buy anymore food. But if a bargain is to be had I will get it.

The budgetting does derail the diet occasionally, as I may only have reduced priced pasties in when my diet calls for chicken breast, but its that or have no protein for a meal.

I did at one time, before 5:2 have a 6 week planner that worked for a while. oops, visitors, back to this thread later.
Thanks @Julieathome My local supermarket is a bit hit-and-miss regarding reduction times.

I love a list! Everything in my freezer is on a spreadsheet... Onceuponatime I had a monthly mealplanner, but that was too much even for me! Weekly planning now.

But I love a bargain (esp if it's protein)- any ideas for 800g of oxtail currently residing in my freezer?
Oxtail soup with crusty bread.
Type oxtail into and you will get loads. I had a very quick glance and saw Curried Oxtail with pink grapefruit!
Oh, yes, I have to plan & list, otherwise I overbuy & end up spending too much, then throwing it away if it goes bad before we use it. I noticed since I started 5:2 I am spending a lot less & planning better, so there's some bonus money saved :)
I survey my family for their schedule to see who's actually going to be home if I'm cooking & we have planned leftovers on our busy nights. This week, were having bean tostadas, seafood fried rice, turkey noodle soup & vegetarian chili for dinner. I either have veggies to saute or salad with every dinner & fresh fruit available for after dinner. We have two diabetics & one cross country athlete, so we don't do sugary desserts.
Myy favorite thing is to skim through cookbooks looking for new & adventurous ideas.
Great idea for a thread!
Do any of you do a 'freezer diving' night. Its basically raiding the bottom of the freezer for all the singles or parts of foods. So it would be the fish fingers left over because there is not enough for the whole family. The single person meat pie, the single portion of curry etc? They even do it in cartoon land. There is a bit at the beginning of 'The Incredibles' where the family is sitting down to such a meal.
Thanks, @Julieathome, that's a brilliant idea to have a list of what's in the freezer, I imagine it'd also be good to have date it went in, and thus a use-by date - mine is like the Black Hole of Calcutta - things get put in there, never to emerge again. Result - waste and a packed freezer! I will go through it today, and get a notice board to start my list - thanks so much for the suggestion!!
I have some 'sticky back' black board vinyl on my cupboard door. I use chalk to write what I have on there and just rub out when its used. Similar to this one. I still have a metre left. ... 2c7c5547c2
We do a weekly menu and shop for that. We do Monday to Friday because Saturday nights is always at the in-laws and Sunday is always Sunday dinner. We don't eat as much cr*p and we do spend a lot less as we only buy what we need. We occasionally do batch cooking and put that in the freezer for 'lazy' days!
I always check the reduced section in the supermarket and buy most of our meat from a cash and carry. We do big cook-ups of spag-bol, curry, tagine, stew and chilli every so often then freeze in recycled margarine tubs. These are handy if I'm on a fast day so hubs isn't "cooking for 1". I have slipped but aim to have a list of what's in each freezer - I need to do it as we have 3 that are currently rammed! I have taken a leg of lamb out tonight for tomorrow to make room for the ribeye that I got at cash and carry today which will go in tomorrow once it's been portioned out.
We meal plan. I look at my diary to see what is on the help with the planning. Generally speaking Sat is family dinner and Sunday is leftovers reinvented. For Mon-Fri I choose five different protein types and then meal plan around my protein e.g. Mon = chicken, Tue = lamb, Wed = beef, Thur = pork, Fri = fish. I have a shopping list b/c I am lost without it.

Once every so often I "shop" from the pantry and freezer this way I spend a week digging out all the odds and ends from the freezer and pantry. It helps turn over the food so nothing goes off/gets freezer burn. This helps with the budget too.
I tend to only plan fast days, but I think I need to start planning everything. I will eat better (and waste less) if I plan non-fast days.

re: "freezer diving" I don't do that in the way you do, Julieathome, but I do try to keep the freezer pretty clear in the summer because I'm pretty much guaranteed to lose power with every typhoon!
I plan fast days but not the others. Problem is I'm overbuying so maybe I should plan the other days too :bugeyes:
Yes I do, but not so much for saving money as saving my mind LOL. ICA (chain food stores have recipes called something like "cheep week" that I use. They put up new ones every Monday, so I print the interesting ones, go through all the ones saved - enough to get us through Monday-Thursday. I shop on Mondays and Fridays, making lists in my cell with everything needed for the recipes and everything we have run out of and mostly (would say at least 90%) stick to the list.

I'm not one cooking large quantities and freeze, but even though we are "only" 3 at mealtimes nowadays, I still cook for 4 - and John has the left overs for nightly snacks to quench the teenage hunger :wink:
Julieathome wrote: Do any of you do a 'freezer diving' night. Its basically raiding the bottom of the freezer for all the singles or parts of foods. So it would be the fish fingers left over because there is not enough for the whole family. The single person meat pie, the single portion of curry etc? They even do it in cartoon land. There is a bit at the beginning of 'The Incredibles' where the family is sitting down to such a meal.

Yes we do a weekly plan then I can make sure my fast days are covered. We also freezer dive, and it's fun, as we may all have something different. But my downfall is not labelling those two ladles of spag Bol, which could then get mixed with chicken curry or stroganoff. Lucky dip we call it.
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