How to Use Food Inventory Sheets

Food inventory sheets are a tool I have used in our home for several years to help decrease food waste and make my shopping trips more efficient.

Food Inventory Sheets

In a past post, I spoke of how and why I developed these sheets in the first place and how helpful these sheets were to my meal planning process.

Related: Meal Planning Made Easier with Inventory Sheets

As the years have progressed and our family (and its needs) have grown and changed, I have gone on to update my inventory sheets and I wanted to take some time to share these updates with you.

Food Inventory Sheets Updated

1. Updated Categories

To help keep things easy to find and follow, I like to include sections for each type of food.

Food Inventory Sheets

Everything from beverages to snacks to baking goods to canned goods. Each of these has their own section.

Breaking items up by category helps to keep things organized and makes doing inventory easy and efficient.

Additionally the sheets are designed to reflect the specific storage areas of food, including the fridge, freezer, and pantry.

2. Bi-Monthly Check-in

The key to keeping these sheets working for you is to stay up to date on your food inventory. But who has time to check every day what you have on hand? The answer is… no one!

These sheets are designed so that twice a month or once every two weeks, I glance into the pantry, fridge, and freezer and see what is in need of replacing.

The items that we are in need of are added to my shopping list.

Food Inventory Sheets

I no longer waste time in my day sorting through cans and bottles to see what we have and need.

Once I replace those items with a shopping trip, I update the inventory and know that our supply is good for at least 2 weeks.

3. Essential Food Items

There are items on every family’s list that would be considered your family’s essentials. These items usually consist of things that your family uses every (or almost every) day.

In our family, this includes things like bread, eggs, milk, and fresh fruit and veggies.

These are things that I know we will consume entirely by the time shopping occurs again.

Because I know these items will be on our shopping list each week, I simply have them listed in the sheets but do not take a routine inventory of them.

4. Shop Your Pantry

The wonderful and most useful thing about maintaining an inventory of your food is the ability to eliminate waste and save money! By knowing what is stored in our fridge, freezer, and pantry, I am able to “shop” our pantry when creating our weekly meal plan.

I simply use what we already have in our house as the base of our meal plans.

Then my shopping list consists only of what we need to complete the dishes and our weekly essentials. No more overbuying or forgetting things from the store.

If you find yourself in need of some help managing and streamlining your meal planning process, click the link below to purchase your own copy of my Food Inventory Sheets.

These sheets are easy to print and add to your meal-planning process!

Related: Food Inventory Sheets


Food Inventory Sheets

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