Vacation Meal Planning

Kevin’s mom and I working away in the kitchen last time she was visiting

Kevin’s mom, sister; Asli, and her husband; Marco, are coming in just a couple of hours!

When Asli told us earlier this year that she and Marco would be coming from Germany to spend a week with us in the mountains, I couldn’t have been more thrilled.

The first order of business was to find a cabin to rent, then the obvious second was figuring out what I was going to be feeding everyone!

After weeks of back and forth meal ideas, I’ve figured out a plan that looks something like this:

Breakfasts

If you don’t already know, I’m kinda obsessed with breakfast. So, it should come as no surprise that I nailed down these ideas way earlier than everything else.

Lunches

We’re going to be out horseback riding, rafting, and hiking, so I’ll probably pack leftovers, or whip up something fast like:

  • Bean salad
  • Veggie salad
  • Hard boiled eggs and veggies
  • Sandwiches
  • Muffins

Dinners

I tried to think of meals that were high in protein and carbohydrates to fuel us for the next days’ activities.

Do you think they’ll leave hungry?

Meal planning for a larger group

I’ve given everyone a chance to make their own meals. That’s why you’ll see:

  • make your own pizza night
  • make your own waffles
  • smokies cookout evening

This will not only give me time to relax, but will allow everyone to pick and choose what they’d like to eat. From vegan, to meat-full, and everything in between.

I’ve tried to include a variety of meals that can be adapted based on taste.

Snacks will be totally unplanned. I’ll be packing a lot of random things like: dried fruit, nuts/seeds, chia, coconut, smoothie ingredients, LARABARs, baked chips, left over baking, grains, hummus ingredients, guacamole ingredients, crackers, etc.

Types of meal planning

The way I see it, there are two different approaches to meal planning:

  1. Plan everything, down to your snacks
  2. Pick a couple of meals and allow for changes

I’ve done both, but like #2 a lot more. I find being open to decisions helps lessen the stress around eating as opposed to having an hour by hour plan. But, it really boils down to your personal preference.

The steps I use for meal planning

  1. Come up with recipe ideasfor lunch/dinner + snacks
    • 1 vegan meal and 1 meat based meal works nice
    • preparing salad toppings in advance encourages me to eat my veggies: roasted chickpeas or veggies are great salad toppers
    • casseroles are awesome and can be stored in your freezer in small containers for weeks to come!
  2. Write a grocery list
    • the less stops the better. My favorite place to shop is Superstore because it has everything I need in one place.
    • organizing my list based on sections of the store helps cut down on the time I spend searching through the isles. Sections include: organic isle, produce, bakery, main isles, deli
  3. Prep meals
    • set aside some time to start preparing your meals

Meal planning isn’t for everyone. With the busy schedule I have though, meal planning assures me that I will always have healthy food with me, no matter how late I work.

And that; to me, is priceless!

Do you plan your meals?

Which meal do you think Kevin’s family will like the most?

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