Back to School Planning

Never mind practice: Planning is what makes perfect, especially when it comes to getting dinner on the table on a school night. Ready to get organized?

Why plan ahead?

The last thing you want to do when you’re feeling hangry is stare at an empty plate, waiting for inspiration to strike. It simply won’t happen.

Instead, set 15 minutes aside every week to plan your meals and make dinnertime a breeze.

Planning made easy

  • 1.Make planning a family affair every Sunday morning.
  • 2.Peruse Ricardo recipes in print and online.
  • 3.Take stock of the contents of your fridge and pantry.
  • 4.Set a specific meal for every day of the week – and stick to it!
  • 5.Get a little help from prepared foods.

How Ricardo staffers get organized

I buy my produce at a local farm in the summer and from an organic greenhouse in the winter. I use their offerings as my inspiration as my weekly menu is based on the vegetables that are in season.

Thao Nguyen

Brand Director

For me, it's all about my slow cooker. I turn it on around 11 p.m. and when I wake up, my dinner is ready. Pure happiness.

Manon Beaudry

National Sales Director

The only way to maintain weeknight sanity is when dinnertime prep work is done over the weekend. Otherwise, evenings can be disastrous.

Marisol Moquin L.

Production Coordinator

I take advantage of the harvest season to stock my freezer. Frozen tomato sauce, applesauce and fruit are handy to have on hand when you’re running low on time.

Martine Bélanger


I grocery shop online and have everything delivered. I use all the time I saved to plan for the week ahead.

Annie Langevin

Marketing & Strategic Creative Director

Making a grocery list: All about teamwork!

Helpful tips to get the kids involved in the family shopping list.

  • 1.Keep the list in plain sight in the kitchen. Think on the fridge, bulletin board or chalkboard.
  • 2.When someone finishes a product, ask them to add it to the list immediately.
  • 3.If your little ones are too small to read and write, draw the items next to the words on the list.
  • 4.Check sales flyers with your kids and let them cut out items to glue them onto the list.
  • 5.Make grocery shopping a game instead of a chore. It is just one big treasure hunt, after all.

A list of lists

If you’re not already a list person, it’s time to get on the bandwagon. Use them, love them and wonder how you ever managed without them.

The must-print template

Specially designed by our team, this handy cheat sheet shows you your weekly menu and grocery list at a glance. Simply click to print (You're welcome!).

The classic list

Use a whiteboard or chalkboard in the kitchen and make sure you keep it up-to-date. When you’re ready to shop, simply snap a photo of it with your smartphone and you’re ready to go.

The high-tech list members have access to “My Grocery List,” a nifty feature that allows you to add recipe ingredients to a virtual list which can then be accessed via smart phone, printed or emailed. Sign up today, it's free!

The grocery store's list

Many large grocery stores offer a list-making widget on their websites. Bonus: Their flyers are there too, making it a great way to get organized and save money.

The envelope list

Deal hunters will appreciate this one: Write your list on a white envelope and slide your coupons inside.