Menu planning seems to be the thing to do if you want to help yourself save a little $$ and make mealtimes a bit more organised. I’ve been planning our meals for years & when Miss K arrived it made our life so much easier. There are still nights when I look at the plan and go ‘nope don’t feel like anything there’ or swap things around. Being the geek I am, I have been looking for a way to have my menu plan a bit more portable – you know, on either of my iDevices 😉
After a bit of searching I came across Menu Planner. This little app has it all – menu planning, shopping list, what’s in your pantry AND recipes all in one spot.Works on both iPad & iPhone/iPod too
I installed the app and got stuck in. Starting with the Setup tab. I left it pretty much as is except for adding our local supermarkets in the Stores tab.
I then added our menu plan for our evening meals for the week. Breakfast here is pretty much the same thing everyday – cereal or toast, unless I have leftover mashed potato from the night before – then it’s potato scones*. Lunch depends on the day.
To create your meal plan, you tap on your day (so for example today) and you’ll be taken to the meal plan, where you select a meal type (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Snack or create your own) then you add a course. Here you can add a recipe that is already in your list (or you can add a recipe as you go), or select a food. In the example below, I’ve added the recipe for Pumpkin Soup to our recipes.
You can use the plan you’ve made for the day as a template, move or copy the meals to another date and even email the menu plan to someone (for example, your partner). You can also print your weekly or monthly plan out to stick on the fridge/noticeboard/wherever.
In the Recipes tab, you can add and edit recipes you use frequently and want to add to future menu plans. You can also use the Import Recipes tab to import from a list of sites. I’m yet to try it to see if I can import my favourite recipes from Taste.com.au (and then I scroll down and see it’s in the list LOL)
The Items tab shows you all items in your pantry and items in recipes that aren’t in your pantry – great for helping you make a shopping list. An awesome feature of the Items tab is you can add prices for each item, add you can add different prices for different stores (cause we all know each shop has their own price) Then there is the Shopping List tab. And if you added prices in your Items list you can get an estimate of what your shopping will cost. Bonus!
Overall, it is a super easy app to use and if you get stuck you can click on the Community tab for tutorials, help, to report issues/bugs and even request features for future versions. I’ve been using the app for about a month & I love it. I’ve even deleted my other recipe apps so I have it all in one place. You can also sync your data so it is backed up on the menu planning website – and you can make changes to everything except your menu plan online.
Menu Planner app gets
4 2 codes for Menu Planner up for grabs, if you want a copy of this great app for yourself, leave a comment 🙂 Works on both iPhone & iPad (code has expired but thanks for the interest)
Disclaimer – I was given a code for this app so I could do a review. All opinions expressed are my own.
* Potato Scones (the Scottish way). Mix cold mashed potato with enough plain flour to make a dough. You don’t want it to be too wet or too dry, so it’s personal preference. Divide mixture into handful size amounts. Roll your handful sized ball til about .5cm thick, cut into 4.
Preheat frypan over medium heat. Sprinkle some plain flour into pan. Watch the flour as it will brown. When lightly browned, add scones. Cook til lightly browned underneath, flip and cook til the other side is lightly browned. Serve with butter (never marg. It has to be butter 😉 ). Repeat with remaining mixture.