Ever since I (Laura) got married almost two years ago, I’ve struggled to come up with an answer to the daily question, “What’s for dinner?” I know that some of you have, too, as evidenced by the discussion in the meal planning and frugal cooking Open Mic post.
Well, I think I’ve finally found something that will help me: eMeals. I’ve been subscribing to eMeals for three weeks now, and I (and my husband) absolutely love it. Here’s an eMeals review and overview of the service as well as a description of my experience with it so far.
eMeals is a meal plan subscription service. For a cost of $5 each month, you’ll be able to print a meal plan and grocery list each week. The meal plan can be customized according to a specific store, number of people, and diet restrictions (Weight Watchers points, low-carb, low-fat, and vegetarian).
Right now, I subscribe to the Aldi meal plan for two people. When I first printed off the list, my husband took one look at it and said that he would enjoy eating every meal suggested!
Every Tuesday, I log on to my eMeals account and download a PDF file of that week’s meal plan and grocery list. I print it on one sheet of paper (front and back), put it in a clear sheet protector, and attach it to my refrigerator with a magnet.
The meals are simple, delicious, and family-friendly. Today, for example, I’m making a yummy Chinese pot roast in the crock-pot and will serve it with some stir-fry vegetables, rice, and dinner rolls.
I’m continuing to shop at Cub and Rainbow for the best deals every week, but I also swing by Aldi to pick up any ingredients I need that I don’t have stockpiled (mostly fresh produce and some meat).
- Your meal plan will give you ideas for side dishes as well as entrées. It truly is a complete plan.
- The meals use up ingredients over the course of the week, so leftovers should be limited. I made a soup two nights ago that I served over baked potatoes last night. I never would have thought of that on my own!
- The plans for specific stores are based on current sales at those stores, but since Aldi’s prices are pretty consistent week to week, I haven’t seen yet how this directly affects my plan.
- The meal plan comes with a grocery list organized by section. If you subscribe to a plan for a specific store, the plan will also list the approximate cost of each item on your list.
- A few items on the list are boxed or prepackaged (boxed rice, for example) to cut down on costs and to speed preparation time. If this isn’t for you, feel free to substitute those items with your own recipes.
- The lists cannot be tailored (yet) to some of our local grocery stores, like Cub and Rainbow. However, you can get a basic meal plan that works at any grocery store.
- Although it’s only $5 a month, it costs money.
Overall, this seems like an excellent and relatively inexpensive resource for those of you who struggle to come up with unique, delicious, family-friendly dinners every night.
To get started, head over to eMeals and check it out for yourself!
Your turn: What do you think of eMeals?
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