Meal planning is a great way to save money AND time, especially if you have a busy lifestyle. Buying food in bulk is a great way to help in this process, though it can seem a little daunting when it comes to storing the food correctly. We’ve put together a few lists for you to make those shopping trips less often and less worrying when it comes to prepping your food for the next few weeks.
Be sure to read more about what ingredients to stock your kitchen with and the items you should have in your kitchen too make meal planning easier!
Produce Storage Guide For Meal Planners
Produce which will last over a week:
Bulk buying food which will last you more than a week makes the rest of your shopping trips quicker for you and lighter for your wallet. Below is a list of food that can be used in a wide range of meals but that will keep in your cupboards/fridge for a respectable amount of time.
- Sweet Potatoes
- Hard Cheese
- Cooked sandwich meats (chicken, beef etc.)
As well as lasting well in the cupboards, all these ingredients are a great basis for a large mixture of meals not forgetting being full of great nutritional value. Don’t forget – you can also bulk buy the meats and cook them up, ready to each for lunches over the week.
Produce that will last a week (5-7 days):
Another great way to make your shops lighter is buying food that will last the whole week. Whether that’s sandwich fillings for lunches, fruit for snacks or meat to have with dinners, this list will have you sorted and full for the whole week.
- Brussel Sprouts
- Cottage Cheese
The great things about these foods is the fact that they are super easy for snacks, great extras for bigger meals or even meals themselves. Some of these are even great to cook up ready for next day lunches, so you get two meals for the price of one!
Produce which will last a few days (3-5 days):
- (Cut) Onions
- Uncooked meats (usually 2-3 days)
- Cooked meats
Another great way for saving time and money is freezing different foods. This is great for if you have had a hectic week and haven’t had a chance to go shopping. If you have a few essentials in your freezer, it means you don’t have to worry if you don’t make it to the shops one week.
- Frozen vegetable packets
- Frozen fruit packets
- Fruit smoothies
Tips and tricks:
- Buying meat such as chicken, turkey, pork chops, lamb chops at the beginning of the month and freezing them will mean you will always have some ready for you to eat. Simply grabbing the meat out of the freezer the night before or the morning of and letting it defrost ready for dinner means no trip to the busy supermarket. Freezing the meat doesn’t change the taste and lightens any other shopping trips you have to make.
- Keeping produce in the fridge is also another great way of keeping it fresher for longer. The normal things such as most fruits and vegetables are probably things you put in the fridge without thinking, but next time try putting in your bananas, carrots, berries and avocados and you may just find you get a few more days out of them.
- Bread is a staple for most houses, whether it’s for toast in the mornings or sandwiches for lunch. Sometimes though, if there is only one or two of you living in the house, the bread does seem to turn bad quicker than you can eat it all. So, why not split the bread into portions in freezer bags and just grab the right amount when making sandwiches? This is a great way to save the bread and your money. If you do find you get through the loaf but it goes a bit stale towards the end of the week, try popping it into the fridge. This helps keeps the bread fresher for longer, just make sure you don’t push it too far to the back so it freezes!