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My Menu/Shopping List

Saturday, 27 August 2016
Hello Dear Reader,

We all have a system that works for us, when planning a menu and shopping list for the week. I just use a piece of scrap A4 paper and folded it into quarters. I then title the quarters :

Top left hand square-days of the week and Butcher,  my menu runs Wednesday to Tuesday, as we shop on a Wednesday

Bottom left hand square-Fruit and Veg

Top right hand square-Woolworths/Coles, depending on where lovely hubby is shopping that week. This then depends on what catalogue specials are on and whether it is worth going to both supermarkets

Bottom right hand square-ALDI

So, then we make up a menu, taking into consideration anything happening that week that will have an influence on dinner prep, also what, if anything, is left over from the previous week, to use up. We don't always get the paper catalogue delivered, so we have a quick look at the online catalogues, to see if there is anything that we use and need, on a good special.

Things can change and sometimes we find a better price at another supermarket and will go there instead, it helps to be flexible and have the time to do that. As we have all three supermarkets within 3 km of home, it is an easy choice for us. I realise not everyone is that fortunate.

As I work full time and lovely hubby part time, he has taken over doing the shopping, I have to say, I do miss it a bit, as I find I am getting out of touch with prices and what is available, but for us, at this time, this is how it has to be.

If you are having some issues with budgeting, meal planning is a great place to start, food is expensive no matter where you live. I find meal planning encourages you to use up food you already have in the house, this will prevent waste and save $$$.

We all have to eat and eat well, to not only survive but live a good life. You need to nourish your body and mind with quality food, from all food groups, to be the best version of yourself you can be. I know everyone has heard it before but you can't expect good performance if you don't feed your body good fuel, it's that simple.

I try and cook from scratch as much as possible, but if it cheaper to buy a ready made product, such as a tomato based pasta sauce, I will buy it. The ALDI brand cost $1.57, so I am happy to pay that small amount for convenience. Like wise, with stock cubes, I don't always have time to make chicken and beef stock and freeze it into portions for later use, so I use Massel stock cubes, they are a quality product that I am more than happy to use and are inexpensive.

You just have to go with what is right for you and also what works, not all of us have the luxury of time, so sometimes, you have to cut corners a bit to get dinner on the table. We all do the best we can and when we know better, we can do better.

So, tell me, what is your system for making a menu and shopping list? What works best for you?


  1. Looks like our systems are some what similar. I sit down and draw up a table for 7 days worth of menus and allocate a main meal for each day. Although I enjoy cooking I find myself drawing from a smallish list of meals due to ease and convenience or price. I usually cook a roast chicken every week. This menu gets put up on the fridge for easy reference. I then use the menu to check what I need to write down for our shopping list. I buy the majority of stuff at ALDI but buy a small selection of things from Woolworths and occasionally the health food shop.

  2. Hi, Fiona. Our meal planning is complicated by a young lad with some special dietary needs so this makes the process a bit more time consuming. I tend to look at what I have in the pantry, stockpile, freezer, fridge and what's growing in the garden. I then think about what I can cook with what's there and what needs to be used up. If I've run out of something, I write it on one of those little magnetic notebooks that sticks to the fridge/freezer. I check specials and decide if there's any products I want to add to my stockpile. If so, I buy them in bulk. Like Therese, I cook a roast once a week, always on weekend, so that we have a delicious meal with leftovers for some early week lunches for work and school. This weekend it was roast lamb but it's often chicken. All your food looks delicious! Meg:)

  3. My system is very similar to yours. Also my husband does the shopping as he has to be in the city most Friday afternoons so he shops before coming home. We make a menu and list on Thursday evening. When there is just the two of us, we don't plan past Monday and make meals from what's left in the fridge/garden/freezer until Friday.

    I always make my own tomato sauce but haven't got into stock-making:( - maybe I should get a slow-cooker you seem to use it a lot.