ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Annual Menu Planning and Grocery List

Updated on July 3, 2013


large dinner
large dinner | Source

Traditional Dishes

Several times during the year, we are faced with preparing traditional dishes. Whether it be the annual family reunion, 4th of July or Mother's Day, certain events conjure the appetite for foods specifically associated with a particular occasion. Turkey is associated with Thanksgiving and Christmas while ham is associated with Easter. For the chef of the family, this creates a recurring menu to be shopped and prepared.

Remembering each dish on the menu can be time consuming. You not only have to remember each dish, but the ingredients as well as the accessories to prepare them. A shopping list has to be created to ensure all necessary items are well stocked in your kitchen. It's an awful feeling to start cooking, reach for an ingredient to find you have run out.

Menu Planning

Menu planning can bring organization and time saving options to all large recurring meals.There are several books, pads, dry erase boards and apps to assist with this approach. The cheapest application is a spreadsheet where your information can be saved on a hard drive, tablet or even transferred to your phone.

Advantages in having a menu plan:

  • make certain all favored dishes are included
  • add new dishes at any time
  • convenient shopping list
  • allows other family member to take over in time in case of sickness
  • can be passed down for generations

Category and Subcategories

You can either do this in one setting or start a week in advance of the event. Start by asking family members what type of dishes they would like to have cooked. You could go off memory, but it's best to have the input of the family. After all, they will be attending.

Once you have gather all the dishes, write down each dish according to category. For instance, if you have appetizers, list those first. Then go on to the main entree, side dishes and desert. The name of the dish should be written as a title. Leave spacing below the title to list all utensils needed to cook that particular dish. Thereafter, list all of the ingredients. List everything in groups as they are located at the store. Butter, milk, eggs and cheese should all be listed together if all those items will be used to cook that dish. The example included in this hub represents Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner.

  1. Main Category - each dish is listed according to serving preference (appetizer, entree, desert)
  2. Subcategory one - each utensil is listed from measuring cup to type of pot
  3. Subcategory two - each ingredient is listed according to how it is found in the store


Before heading out to the store, look over you list and cross out any duplicates. The best thing about this type of list, you can be confident someone else will be able to find everything you need. They will also be able to see what


See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • OMGirdle profile image

      OMGirdle 6 years ago from United States

      Thank you hush :)

    • hush4444 profile image

      hush4444 6 years ago from Hawaii

      This is such a great idea! No matter how many lists I make, I always forget something essential - like butter. Voted up and awesome!