Menu planning is the process of deciding what you will eat for each meal, including main dishes, side dishes, and desserts. It also entails knowing how many meals to plan for and when to serve them. Daily activities and scheduling variations may complicate the menu planning process.
Effective menu planning is rewarding in terms of time and money, especially given how little effort it takes. Those who do it well seem to have internalized its rules. The good news: The rest of us can learn, too. We asked three food experts to share their menu-planning strategies―from shopping savvy to using ingredients wisely.