Weekly Menu Plans


Just in case you didn’t notice, Planning With Kids does have a free weekly menu planner! For some time now I have taken our family weekly menu plans, that step further and planned them out for a month in one sitting. It saves so much time. You can see a full description of how I go about it here – monthly menu planning process.

The weekly menu plan below was the last one I had prepared, so I have just produced 4 x weekly menu plans to take us through Feb and early March. This time I thought I would share the menu plans and shopping lists with you, in case you might like to try some pre-made menu plans. I would interested to know how far in advance (if at all) you menu plan?

Over the month a couple of meals are repeated. Each child is allowed to choose four meals and they often have the same favourites. I limited the repetition to twice though (even though they would have chicken schnitzel every night if I would cook it!).

I have collated the four weekly menu plans and associated shopping lists into a zip file (800kb) and you can download it here:

Weekly Menu Plans: 12th Feb – 11th Mar 2011

NB. As my dear husband heads into a market every Saturday morning to buy fresh fruit and veg, we menu plan from Saturday to Friday. You could just cross out the days and write them Monday to Sunday if that is how you plan and shop.

The Weekly Menu Plan

Baking: Chocolate Balls

Monday: Slow Cooker Chicken Noodle Soup

Tuesday: Lasagne

Wednesday: Left Overs

Thursday: Marinated Steak and Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Friday: Fried Rice

Saturday: Lamb Souvlaki Wraps

Sunday: Chicken Schnitzel and Steamed Veggies


  1. says

    I try to menu plan for a week in advance but I don’t always end up stickng to the exact order I originally planned. I like your idea of having certain type of meals on set nights – I think I will have to give that a go. I will also have a go at menu planning for the month and see how that goes. Thanks for sharing

  2. sharon says

    We weekly menu plan, which is quite similar to your one and shop every saturday morning. Due to a change in my husbands pay date this month we are being forced to plan it for over 6 weeks this month though, so was very busy over the weekend putting together some tasty, budget meal ideas and will compile that into my weekly shops today.

    Out of interest, do you plan and shop to stick to a specific budget, if so what sort of budget do you allocate for your family meals? This is one area I am very keen to reduce our costs in whilst maintaining yummy meals. We both love food and cooking, so its often easy for us to slip up in the area.

  3. says

    We do a weekly plan, because we include the school lunches as well. With school just starting we are exploring what sorts of lunches work well and the big girl will eat.

    Hilariously – last night my husband was googling for a recipe for roast in a slow cooker and printed out yours for me! He chose it because it looked nice and kid friendly. I thought it was funny that of all the recipes on the internet he found me one by someone I know.

  4. Abbington says

    I just plan a week in advance, as we have a weekly planner pad that we use for all the weeks appointments and events. I only plan 5 or 6 meals, which gives us space/flexibility for leftovers/using up ingredients or unexpected invitations out or just a night of boiled eggs and toast! When I tried planning 7nights, because I was doing the shopping at the start of the week, I found we too often had food that wasn’t getting used up properly.

    Like you, because of particular commitments on certain days of the week, there are certain meal types which suit certain days.

    I definitely find my week runs more smoothly if I plan meals ahead. I have never tried more than a week in advance, I should give it a go and see if it works for us!

  5. says

    I love menu planning! We have a weekly plan and I include what I call extras (baking mostly like and after kinder treats, or snacks for REG). We get a delivery of fruit and veg on Wednesday so I plan midweek to midweek. I do one pot dishes for kinder nights as they get fed well at our kinder and I am always in a rush after work and Saturday night is REG’s night to cook (Mum’s night off) – well that’s the plan. I’ve been doing this for years and I am certain it has saved me both time and money.

    • says

      We just can’t seem to keep enough fruit in the house at the moment. Even after the Saturday market shop, I am finding I need to get more fruit mid week – the joys of growing boys!

  6. says

    I’ve been “shopping my pantry” lately. It’s a bit of a fun challenge to come up with a meal plan based on ingredients I already have on hand. I usually plan a few days to one week ahead but have been wanting to try a whole month plan for a while. I know I’d have to be flexible in my plan as so many things change.

  7. Gin says

    I only plan 4 meals in a week. Hubby cooks one, which leaves 2 for leftovers, baked beans on toast, pantry meals or takeaway.

    Nic, what do you do with leftovers? And do you ever eat out, or is that planned for as well? Do you ever think “let’s grab some sausages and go down to the lake for a barbie” and then, what do you do about that night’s planned meal and ingredients?

    • Gin says

      Sorry, I now see you have “leftovers” planned once a week, which would give you the flexibility to deal with those situations.

      • says

        The once a week left overs works well in giving me some flexibility. We eat out very rarely these days to be honest. We used to do it a lot when we lived inner city. Once of my goals for this year is to go out once a quarter with the family for dinner. I do like doing it, we are just out of the habit at the moment.

        There are nights when I can’t be bothered cooking. I always have sausages in the freezer and tend to throw those on the bbq if I want a quick meal. That and my kids love pasta and cheese or scrambled eggs. Some nights dinner is as simple as one of those meals. This usually tends to occur on Friday nights.

        As for the ingredients that I didn’t use for the missed meal, my kids eat lots of raw veggies, so I will often just let them eat them as a snack. We also use Tupperware fridge mates, which means the veggies do stay fresh much longer than if you stored them in the crisper. So I can quite often use them the next week. I never take the meat out of the fridge the night before to defrost it. I always use the microwave just prior to cooking, so the meat just stays in the freezer.

  8. says

    I am so impressed at how many people can plan beyond a week – very organised! I have just gone back down to part-time work and have reverted to planning three-four days at a go. Admittedly, as I only have the one kid, there seems to be a bit more time available for a mid-week swing past the shops.

    Good luck with the monthly planning – you are an inspiration!