Whether going to the cottage, off to the lake or out on the boat someone needs to plan the food. How do you do it so that there is enough food for everyone but not too much? Menu planning. Here are a few suggestions when planning food for your summer vacation.
- Write a menu listing what you will eat for breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner and snack.
B- blueberries, raspberries, yogurt, granola, coffee, juice
S- muffins and grapes
L- salmon sandwiches (mayo, dill, lettuce, tomatoes), baby carrots, snap peas, water
S- yogurt, cherries, oatmeal cookies
D- pork tenderloin, grilled peaches, arugula salad with fennel and parmesan, salad dressing, (olive oil, vinegar, mustard, garlic), new potatoes, wine, milk
S- smores (graham wafers, marshmallows, chocolate, carving knife for stick)
- Think about what you can cook in bulk and use for lunch the next day. For example if you do BBQ chicken for dinner, make lunch grilled chicken wraps with the already cooked chicken from last night.
- Consider how long you are going and which foods you will need to use up first and which foods will last. If you have a freezer then you can freeze meats. Consider having the butcher vacuum seal meats and deli meat so they last longer. Consider also freezing some bread, wraps and buns so they don’t go mouldy or stale. Fresh produce like berries should be consumed first, while you allow tree fruit to ripen. Save the melons, apples and oranges for later in the week. Vegetables like carrots, radishes, beets, onions and potatoes have a longer shelf life whereas the prewashed lettuce should be used up. Consider creating a cooler for fresh produce to make room in your fridge. Replace the ice packs every morning and before bed to keep foods cool. Check the expiry dates on yogurts and milk when you buy them to be sure they will last the duration of your trip.
- If there is another family coming with you delegate some meals. Suggest that they plan food for certain meals or days.
- Have them send you a list of condiments they will need so you don’t bring double.
- Write a grocery list based on your meal plan and sort it into food groups so shopping is more efficient. Include amounts as best you can so you only buy what you need.
- Pack the grocery bags with cooler and fridge items in the same bags so that packing them up to take with you is easier. Or better yet, pack the groceries directly into your cooler and travel boxes when at the grocery store!
- If you have more guests coming later in the week or the next week, give them a list of some items you are running low on such as fresh milk, bread, lettuce and berries.
- Use the first in first out principle.
- Make a rule that the ones who cook don’t have to clean. Enlist help from the kids and create memories!