As a busy mom, I find that meal planning apps available on my phone are a great resource to me when it comes to meal planning and heading off to the grocery store.
Today’s guest post is about the top meal planning apps of 2012.
Mom, what’s for dinner?
Knock the kids’ socks off with the following five meal-planning apps—for the iPhone and Android. No, these apps won’t ensure the kids will gobble down whatever you make, but they will make it easier to get dinner on the table when you’re strapped for time.
1. Mise En Place ($2.99 – for iPhone)
The Mise En Place app makes meal planning easy—scheduling every aspect of meal preparation, including shopping, food prep time, and cooking duration. Think of this app as your own personal project manager for family meal planning. Plan out an entire week of meals and use it to get all of your shopping needs and food prep work done before you even step near the stove cook.
2. Big Oven (Free – for Android and iPhone]
The Big Oven application gives users access to over 17,000 delicious recipes. You can search by ingredients you have on hand, meal (i.e., breakfast, lunch, dinner, desserts, or snacks), or keyword (i.e., chicken, vegetarian, dairy-free). You can also get some yummy inspiration from users who post their favorite recipes in the “What’s for Dinner?” section. View recipes based on what you have leftover in your fridge or pantry, and post reviews and comments on your most prized delectable delights.
3. How to Cook Everything ($4.99 – for iPhone)
The How to Cook Everything app is a cooking tool that literally tells you how to cook everything to perfection! Based on the no-nonsense advice of best-selling cookbook author Mark Bittman, this app features more than 2,000 recipes from his personal cookbook (including 400 step-by-step illustrations on cooking techniques). Search a variety of easy-to-prepare cooking categories—such as ‘Quick Dinners’, ‘Bittman’s Picks’, ‘Family Favorites’, and ‘Holiday Dishes’—for recipes accompanied by cooking timers, shopping lists, preparation information, and ingredient reference information.
4. Meal Planning by Food on the Table (Free – for Android and iPhone)
The Meal Plans – Food on the Table app will help your family save valuable money and time when it comes to meal planning. This app will give you a rundown of all sales at your local supermarkets, and match food deals with recipes that contain those very same ingredients. Before you shop for the week, you can plan your meal schedule, organize your grocery list, and ensure you’re getting the very best deal possible. My sister and I both recently got new Android T-Mobile phones and we are always trying to one-up each other on the savings we’ve found using this app.
5. The Coleman Camping Cookbook & Meal Planner (Free – for iPhone)
You plan out all of your meals at home like a celebrity chef, but what about when you go on vacation? Take precise meal planning with you on your next family camping, cottage, or RV trip with the Classic Camping Cookbook & Meal Planner app from the Coleman outdoor pros. Summers are jam-packed with beach vacations, summer cookouts, and long weekend festivities and this app can help you plan the perfect meal based on food type, cooking equipment (barbecue or open fire), category (dinner or brunch), long weekend theme (Fourth of July), and ingredients. This app will ensure you have yummy meals on deck for your entire camping trip and make certain you never forget an essential ingredient at home (i.e., mayonnaise for your famous pot luck pasta salad).
Bio: Jane Johnson is a staff writer for GoingCellular, a popular site that provides cell phone news, commentary, reviews and more.