I actually liked that meal plan. I tend to eat food I was successful with until I can't stand oatmeal or yogurt. When I look at the plan,it might mean I pick two of their breakfast choices and alternate them and for week 2 pick two new choices. You can buy bacon by the slice at most meat counters or the deli counter at a grocery store. I also ignore brand names.
I just as easily can double or triple the meal depending on how many people are home.
I didn't take the plan to be rigid. Just to give some fresh ideas.
Oh - and while I might buy plain frozen veggies, I'd never buy something with premade butter sauce and the like.
The meal plans are an example for those members who don't really have a plan, and are wondering what a healthy meal plan , or menu looks like.
I would just turn off the meal plan, OR.. divide foods into freezer bags. It isn't like this is the only time SP will recommend bacon or brussels sprouts, and both will last a long time in the freezer. You may spend a lot of money in week 1, but when you are using leftovers from that big bag of veggies, or the lb. of bacon, those servings will be essentially free for that week.
If you turn off trackers, then you can use the tracker foods as examples, and have broccoli 3X this week, instead of 1, and spend less this week. The overall cost though will be the same, since eventually you will eat all the food. You don't eat 1 serving, and throw the other 4 away. My freezer doors are lined with veggies I don't plan on eating for 1-2 weeks.
The other thing you might consider is that in a pinch, when you find yourself feeling a little bit hungry, having veggies available might be better than planning to have no extra food in the house. Instead of going to McDonald's, why not eat a few servings of veggies? Better for you, and certainly cheaper in the long run.
I know personally that my " grocery " bill is a bit more expensive, but my " food " bill is way down since I started eating healthier.
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To the original poster--- Thank you for sharing your comment. You are however, getting a menu for 1 person; and therefore you are getting a grocery list for 1 person.
Of course you cannot buy 1 cup of frozen Brussels sprouts (for an example) ---So you check your freezer and see if 1 cup still remains in the bag of Brussels sprouts that you purchased 3 weeks ago; ---or you buy the size bag you want, and dish out 1 cup for your serving....or more cups if you are cooking for more people. And return the rest to your freezer for the next time you prepare this veggie. ---The grocery list is letting you know that you need 1 cup for "your serving" ---you need to figure out the rest based on your personal lifestyle and what you have and need in your pantry.
The individual meals in the plan were created by a live and thinking human. How they get onto your plan is random number generation and what options you ticked off. There is not anywhere to program in how many hot dogs come in a pack and how many people are in your family so that the grocery list can tell you how many to buy and then use them all up. That's where you, the thinking human, have to do a little work. A meat is a meat is a meat. So when you see bacon and pepperoni on the plan, pick one and buy enough of that item to use where either is called for. Same goes for veggies. Or fruits. Or dairy. Or bread. I have seen my planner call for sliced bread, baugette, english muffin, bagel and pita in the same week. You do not buy them all, you use what you have or you buy one or two kinds to cover the total servings. It is a free meal planner. I have never seen any free planner that manages to use up everything you have to buy. Same goes for the ones in books. For future reference a well stocked meat market should have both pepperoni and bacon and let you buy them by the pound. Which means all you need to do is ask for four slices and you will get just four slices. I know my local chain grocery would let you do that, but I know they do not carry pepperoni and I do not think they have fresh bacon.
" 4 slices of bacon? Does everyone have a magical grocery store where you can get the exact portion you need?"
Actually, I do! But if you don't, you freeze the rest until you need it.
And those Brussels sprouts.... you use 1 cup and keep the rest in the freezer until the next time you eat them. No need to waste food or throw it out!
"if I had to buy everything on this list I would exceed my grocery budget for the month in a week." You are free to turn off the meal plan and do your own thing. I do.
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Come on SparkPeople, this meal plan is completely unrealistic http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=1620&page=4#_a5y_p=1272581
The grocery list tells you to buy things like '1c frozen brussel sprouts' and '4 slices of pepperoni' Please tell me where you can get those things. 4 slices of bacon? Does everyone have a magical grocery store where you can get the exact portion you need? Not only that but if I had to buy everything on this list I would exceed my grocery budget for the month in a week.
The 'quick meals' idea is great, but lets not pretend we can actually expect people to follow this 4 week meal plan. We'd go broke and waste tons of food (like those extra 20 slices of pepperoni we had to buy).
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