(Note: This post contains affiliate links. UM gets a small commission for purchasing items through our links. Thanks so much for supporting us!)
I’m a bit of a book hoarder. Rereading books is a favorite pastime of mine so I don’t easily part with the ones I love. This is especially true for cookbooks because you need them for referencing. So I easily have 100 cookbooks in my possession right now…. And I’d like to share with your guys the 5 cookbooks that can help you meal plan!
By: Jonny Bowden & Jeannette Bessinger
Many of you know that 15-minute meals are my jam. I love having them in my arsenal for really busy weeks or when I really don’t feel like cooking. However, most of the ones I have aren’t exactly the picture of health. Enter this book. The recipes legit take 15 minutes and they are tasty! This is definitely a cookbooks that can help you meal plan.
So far I’ve tried the Smoked Turkey-Apple Cobb Salad in Seconds (I’m a sucker for a Cobb salad.) and the One-Pot Fiber Fiesta Taco Soup, bother were super good! Easy to make and came together fast. I like how the authors take help from the store with utilizing bagged greens and deli meats. That’s right up my alley! But they make their own dressing which really gives the salad a punch of flavor.
I’m looking forward to the No-Fuss Mussels in Spicy Beer Brother and the Honey Drumsticks with Calorie-Burning Cayenne. I adore mussels but I’ve never made them myself but something about this cookbook gives me the confidence to do it. Drumsticks are a favorite in our house so I’m really excited to try the broiler method outlined in this recipe. I think it might be a game changer!
How this Cookbook Helps you Meal Plan:
- +Nutritional info for every recipe
- +Interesting ideas that get you thinking of how to update your classics
- +Easy to follow recipes
By Rachael Ray
This is an oldie but a goodie! Chock full of super simple but delicious recipes that your kids will actually eat and the adults will still love. I’ve tried a whole bunch because I’ve owned this baby for over 10 years, lol! (I may or may not collect Rachael Ray cookbooks….) You will not be disappointed in these easy to follow recipes.
Some of our favorites are Chicken & Dumplings and Super Stuffed Potatoes. The potatoes are a great base recipe that we’ve modified a million different ways. That’s what I love about this cookbook, lots of great basic ideas that you can make your own with what you have on hand. In fact, my Broccoli Alfredo Pasta was inspired by the Fettuccine Alfredo recipe in this book!
When you first start out meal planning and you want your kids to try new things, it can be difficult to know which recipes are good to try. This book is a safe bet because even if they don’t all go over with your kids (that can definitely take time) the recipes are all delicious. This cookbook truly helps you meal plan.
How this Cookbook Helps you Meal Plan:
- +Delicious recipes that the whole family will love
- +Small ingredient lists: most recipes have less than 10 ingredients
- +Creative meal ideas that get you thinking outside of the box
Truth be told, I don’t make that many things in my crockpot. It certainly gets used, usually once a week, but it doesn’t see much variety. However, I recently stumbled upon this gem of a cookbook and there a loads of great crockpot recipes in it. We love the No-Fuss Potato Soup and Chili Cheese Dip.
I love this cookbook for meal planning because it gives you new and exciting crockpot recipes to try and every new meal planer should have at least one crockpot meal a week. Mostly because it eliminates so much stress at dinner time because you did the prep work in the morning or the night before.
How this Cookbook Helps Meal Plan:
- +Variety of crockpot meals that don’t all taste the same
- +Clear directions and small ingredient lists
- +Dinners the whole family will eat
By Melissa Hartwig & Dallas Hartwig
Full disclosure, I’m not doing Whole30……yet. (I’m considering it but I’m pretty scared to commit.) However, my husband and I are trying to cut down on grains and dairy so using Whole30 recipes seemed like a great resourcse. Plus my friend Katie from So Much Spinach owns a copy and lucky for me she likes to share. So I gave it a read and it’s much more than a cookbook.
More than half of the book is a complete guide to how to eat Whole30 for 30 full days. It explains what you can eat, what you can’t eat and how to implement it realistically into your daily life. If you are considering doing Whole30, I highly recommend it.
The last third of the book are the recipes. I really like the Cauliflower Rice and Asparagus with Lemon Zest. Very basic but delicious side dishes. I think the sides are truly the hardest part of making Whole30 work so I’m glad they have some tasty options. I personally used the frozen riced cauliflower from Aldi and that made it even easier.
Meal planning can be intimidating to begin with so I don’t want you to think you have to jump in on Whole30 right out of the gate! But, there are easy recipes in here that will really give your meal plan a healthy edge, that’s why I;m recommending it. Plus, those side dishes are great and that’s always a way to first start incorporating healthy dishes. Whole30 cookbook can help you meal plan in a more healthy way.
How this Cookbook Helps you Meal Plan
- +Lots of great recipes to make your meal plan healthier
- +Yummy recipes that are easy to follow
- +Gives you ideas for cleaner eating
By Jessica Fisher
Freezer cooking, you actually don’t hear me talk much about it on the blog. That’s because I don’t do much of it😱 Sure I freeze extra portions of food when I made to much but I don’t go out of my way to do “freezer cooking sessions”. Still, when I came across this book it intrigued me.
Disclaimer- I haven’t tried a recipe from this book yet! I literally just got it but I read through it and it’s legit. That being said I can’t recommend any specific recipes but I really like the layout and information given so I still added it to the list. This cookbook can help you meal plan and get your inspired to freezer cook.
First of all, there is lots of good info on how to freeze food, how to thaw it and then how to cook it. Plus, the recipes aren’t all soups and stews (the main things I freeze). There is a lot of variety in this cookbook, I’m really excited to try the Soy Balsamic Burgers and freeze half of them. The Raspberry Jam Scones also sound out of this world and they are high on my list.
Key How this Cookbook Helps you Meal Plan
- +Great information on freezing all sorts of food
- +Variety of recipes that can be frozen
- +Gets you motivated to do some freezer cooking
Are you struggling with consistent meal planning? I can help! Download my FREE Monthly Meal Planning Guide below and get started meal planning today. Just imagine what it would be like if you had dinner made every night but you didn’t have to cook every night. Imagine how much money you would save by not eating out so much or throwing so many groceries away. That can be your reality and it doesn’t take much time to do. Grab my FREE guide today!
Taran is a self-proclaimed undomestic mom. She thrives as a stay-at-home-mom by consistently carving out time for herself and practicing realistic self-care. As a busy mom of 3, she knows that if mama ain’t happy, nobody’s happy! With a focus on how SAHMs can carve out time for themselves everyday, she teaches fellow SAHMs how they can do the same.