Saturday, November 26, 2016

Black Friday Sale

We didn't go Black Friday shopping - or at least, we did go to some stores, but we didn't go in search of doorbuster deals or anything like that. We went in search of bread, milk, and grounded outlet covers - or, the kinds of things we might buy on any other day.

One Black Friday sale I DO recommend, though, is Plan to Eat's 50% off deal.

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

Plan to Eat is a meal planning and recipe collection website, which I started using last year when a friend posted a link to the 50% off Black Friday sale. I couldn't imagine paying for a service that I could do for free with Pinterest, Google Calendar and Google Keep - but she recommended it so strongly and is a frugal stay at home mom, so I figured it might be worth trying it out, especially given that the sale price winds up being only $1.62 per month. I figured I was wasting at least that much a month with failed menu planning.

And guess what - it IS worth it! Yes, you can gather recipes on Pinterest, plan meals on a Google calendar, and create a shopping list in Google Keep, all for free. But it's just not as convenient, easy, and - dare I say it - fun to use as Plan to Eat.

I put their "add to Plan to Eat" bookmark to my browser windows and voila - all those recipes I had previously been starring in my feed reader and adding to Pinterest boards suddenly wound up all in one place. I revised the standard shopping list to include those staples I prefer to have on hand. Weekly, I created a menu within Plan to Eat, which told me how often I'd made a given recipe and whose search tools quickly helped me organize recipes I'd been wanting to try. With one click, I could create a shopping list based on those recipes and the staples I currently needed. Bam! Menu planning to grocery shopping, done, in one step.

I'm not the one who does the meal planning in our house anymore, but I'm still going to renew my subscription to Plan to Eat, because I found it that helpful. I rarely pay for software tools when free ones exist to fill the same needs, but this is one that actually delivers.

(Disclosure: Links in this post are affiliate links, so if you sign up for Plan to Eat, I get a little something. However, this is not a sponsored post, and I really have been a happy Plan-to-Eater for the last year. )

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