Episode 118 4 Reasons You Aren’t Sticking to Your Meal Plan and How to Get Back on Track

 In Planning, Podcast

How many times have you made a meal plan and then didn’t follow it? Maybe you got busy, or maybe your kids ate one of the main ingredients. This week’s podcast is all about helping you stick with your meal plan.


Know that you are not alone. I know in my house that I change from my original plan once a week. It’s okay, I expect it and it doesn’t mean food is going to waste. I just make small tweaks.


Here are the four reasons you may not be sticking with your meal plan and how to get back on track.

1-  You have unrealistic expectations.

  • -Are you too aspirational in your meal choices?
  • -Maybe your season of life doesn’t have room for making a recipe that takes all day and a sink full of dishes to execute.
  • -Maybe your family’s pallets are not ready for new flavors and textures.
  • -Be realistic in your expectations for “healthy” meals. Change takes time and is best received when it is gradual.
  • Episode 115 talks about “Base Ingredients” and how you can use them to add variety to your meals without as many complaints from your family.


2-   Your family eats the ingredients you planned to use for dinner.

  •  -Use a bin to hold ingredients like the “Blue Bin” I talk about in episode 12.
  •  -Use a sharpie or wet erase marker to label food you plan to use for dinner. 
  •  -Buy some stickers to put on food to signal to your family that you plan to use that ingredient.
  •  -The key is to be clear. Tell your family how you are marking foods to save.

3-    The meal you planned doesn’t sound good anymore.

  •  -This is often why I change meals at least once a week.
  •  -I try to keep the same “Base Ingredients” and shift the recipe in small ways to make something that sounds better to me or my kids.
  •  -Look at the weather when you make your meal plans.
  •  -If it is going to be rainy or cold, plan meals like soup or stew.
  •  -If it is going to be warm and sunny on the weekend, plan really simple meals because you will likely spend the day outside or tackle a big project and you won’t want to cook.

4- The ingredients go bad before you make the meal.

  • -Did you plan your meals around your grocery shopping?
  • -Plan meals with highly perishable meals close to your grocery trips.
  •  -Shop more than once a week for fresh ingredients.
  • -Be realistic about the amount of effort you will put into cooking, and consider quicker prep options like bagged coleslaw or pre-cut meat.

This post contains affiliate links.

Marie Fiebach is a married mother of four active kids. She helps busy families plan and execute weeknight dinner so they can recapture a little calm in the crazy. You can see her every week on KAKE TV’s Good Morning Kakeland or listen to the Feed Your Family Tonight Podcast.

For a transcript click here

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