A Food Rut!

Liz Fogle

Bread…Milk…Yogurt…Chicken…Ground Beef…blah…blah…blah!!! Recently, my grocery list got an overhaul. As I was struggling to make a list or plan our meals, I realized something. I had almost the same items on my list every week and we were eating a lot of the same things (boring)! Plus, cooking dinner was becoming stressful and too time consuming. I feel like my husband and I were always asking each other, “What’s for dinner?” I hated that dinner was becoming a huge chore and that we were in a food rut! Moms, do you know what I am talking about?!?!

In an attempt to get out of our food rut, I joined a website that helps me meal plan for the week. It gives me a list of 7 new recipes and a printed grocery list to shop from. Wow…talk about pathetic!! You would think I could meal plan without assistance, but I can’t or I don’t do it very well. Even though I am an organized person, I just can’t get it together!

I think my inability to plan stems from my dislike of cooking. I do not like to cook, but I can cook, which is surprising. I couldn’t boil water growing up (I am not kidding). I just skated by in my Home Economics Cooking Class (and that took a lot of help)! I really didn’t learn how to cook until I got married and I only learned out of necessity (my husband in thankful).

So back to our food rut! The meal planning has forced me to be more prepared when going to the grocery. I don’t make everything on the recipe list, but the majority of our meals come from it. I fill in the other days with some of our favorite meals. Even though I have a list of recipes in front of me, I have to make sure I choose new foods to try (and don’t just pick chicken). My tendency is to gravitate to similar meals, which doesn’t fix our food rut problem at all. At least once a week, I force myself to pick something new for our family to try. Let me tell you, some of them have been a bust.

I cooked a meal in the Crockpot last week and it was a major disaster!!! Smelled great, but looked like dog food! I sent my husband a picture of it (lol)! He quickly texted back, “what is that?” (He also showed it to all the guys at work…great!). I know you would love to see the picture, but that isn’t going to happen. I am too embarrassed to share it with you guys. Needless to say, I picked up dinner that night.

Meal planning not only forces our family to try new recipes, but also helps us save on our groceries. Before I started planning our meals, I would go to the grocery and just buy stuff. I would come home with an assortment of items that may make a meal! Shopping with a strict list (organized by department) prevents the excess buying and impulse buying. Also, dinner is not as stressful anymore. There is no longer a question of what is for dinner. I write out a list and we follow it for the week. My husband is grateful I no longer ask, “What do you want for dinner at 4:30”.

Mom’s have you experienced a food rut? If so, what did you do to get out of it or are you still trying to get out of it? If you meal plan, do you have any great resources you use? I would love to hear from you. Also if you have any great new recipes, please share them!

Can’t wait to hear from you.



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