Wednesday, April 28

Planning for a big cook

My goal this weekend it to plan and prepare 80-90 meals . These will last us all through the summer, and canning season when I really don’t have time to cook and the stove is taken up with tomatoes.

I thought I would share a little about how I plan for such a large endeavor. It really isn’t hard it just takes a bit of planning and organization. I start by looking through my recipe books and jotting down meals that we like, meals that are good for the particular season I am cooking for, and meals that will freeze well.039 My storage cookbook (I have two)

After I have made my list I then copy each recipe so I can put it in my go-to notebook. My go-to notebook is simply a small thin 3 ring binder. This keeps everything I need for the months in one spot for easy access. I will refer to it every time I pull out something from the freezer.

026 It sounds like a lot of extra work to copy each recipe but it is really worth it to not have to search for anything while you are cooking. Then after you have done it a few times there is less and less to copy. This means my regular cookbook has doubles of everything. I keep my recipes in plastic sleeves so they don’t get ruined. I am not a neat cook!029As you can see some are copied out of cook books and some I have taken the time to type out and put in my 3 ring storage binder.029028 







After they are copied I group like meals together, chicken, pork, beef, marinades, etc. This is how I will cook. I usually do the marinades first as they are easy, then move on to the beef dishes, and then the chicken and pork. Each of my plastic sleeves in my go-to notebook is labeled with a number, and I usually have 20 recipes each cook. These numbers correspond to my shopping list so I make sure to buy enough of each item.  You can see the numbers on the labels in the top right of each plastic sleeve. I reuse these sleeves each cook.025  I print our four pages of my shopping list planner. It usually takes that many when I fill in each ingredient. Starting with the first recipe in the book I write down all the ingredients and fill in how much I need for each under the number one. Then I move on to the second recipe writing down any ingredients that I don’t all ready have listed, and the amounts for each under the number 2 and continue until number 20. After I have finished this step I triple every recipe as I am totaling up the numbers in my total columns. Your totals should look big!  033You’ll notice that for 20 meals I have a double number column. This is so I can fit them all on one page, otherwise it is to much to keep up with and I forget to buy something or I buy to much.

Then my last planning step at this point is to transfer it all to my shopping list per the layout of the grocery store. I group meats together, dairy, canned items, dairy, etc. This will make it easier to shop.











Tomorrow I will share with you how to shop!


  1. You need to patent that system, make copies, sell them, and send one to me! : ) I keep saying I'm going to cook for a month, but it hasn't happened yet. Maybe as soon as school's out (4 more Mondays!), I'll have some time to do a marathon cooking session. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I SO need to do this again! I have been scrounging for meals recently because there isn't enough time in the day it seems! I really want to get a big freezer!! I LOVED having a full month off of cooking!

  3. Can you share your meal plans? What you are cooking... I'm out of inspiration!

  4. OH my gosh. Where are you when I need you????
    Seriously, are you coming to Arizona anytime soon?

  5. OK, I made it to your blog and you have so inspired me! Since I just have the one small freezer and I am not quite as ambitious as you, yet, I will do a 20 dinner cook. This will be a month of meals for us. So, now I have questions, but I will ask them when I see you :)

  6. have it down to quite a science. Great for you. Can't wait to read on...

  7. It looks like you use the cookbook More With Less... which recipes in there are good freezer recipes? Do you have tips on what NOT to freeze? I discovered potatoes. :( Wow, I want to pick your brain. Where are you from?! P.S. I love Jesus too! Thank you for the inspiration.

    (A new wife)

  8. Great ideas! Thanks! I became a follower of your blog! :) Erin


I love receiving comments, if you have a question please leave an e-mail address so I can return your question with an answer. Thanks!


Related Posts with Thumbnails