Need Menu Ideas? 8 Places You Might Not Be Looking

Cooking Magazines & Place Setting

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Have you ever wondered where people who regularly plan menus get their ideas?  Of course, there are the obvious places:

Cooking magazines

Those are great options but sometimes there’s no time (or desire) to look through another cookbook or cooking magazine and Pinterest can be overwhelming.

In that case, there are some other options you might not have thought of:

  1. Restaurant menus;
  2. Grocery store ads (sometimes you get ideas, sometimes they actually have recipes)
  3. Frozen food section of the grocery store;
  4. Blogs with weekly menus;
  5. Friends – just ask your Facebook friends what they’re having for dinner;
  6. Commercials;
  7. Products in your pantry or refrigerator – some of those have great recipes right on the package;
  8. Food photos

Some of these resources provide the recipe.  That makes it easy.  For the ones that don’t, you have two options:

  1. Create your own recipe;
  2. Search on-line for a similar recipe.

So the next time you’re making a menu and can’t think of anything good to make, check out some of these options.  Or you can always check out my menus and/or the recipe index.

Where do you get your recipe ideas?


  1. Honestly? Any and all of the ones you’ve mentioned! And I often browse Pinterest to see what catches my eye and go from there. My Hub and I have often eaten at a restaurant and decided to try to duplicate meals at home -or at least a reasonable facsimile. Can be lots of fun to figure out!
    Lisa @ The Meaning of Me recently posted…Ten Things of Thankful – Couldn’t Help Myself EditionMy Profile

  2. My go to is pinterest for menu ideas. I use to do the food network magazine and would pick one dish to cook out of there a week for that month but I no longer get the subscription. I have not thought about restaurant menus that would save me a ton of money if I can recreate some of those things. Stopping over from SITS
    Kita recently posted…New Year, New ThingsMy Profile

    • Thanks for stopping by. I used to get Food Network magazine, too, but don’t right now. I didn’t find a lot of recipes I wanted to try in there but I loved looking through it.

  3. Hi, I found your page at SITS! I have found bloggers to be so helpful with providing interesting recipes. Usually I just resort to Google though!
    Janelle @ Run With No Regrets recently posted…2013 in Review: Running and FitnessMy Profile

  4. When I’m struggling with how to use up leftovers, I have this book I bought years ago which is organized by types of food – The Use It Up Cookbook.

    I’d love for you to share your menu planning tips with my readers at my Motivation Monday linky.
    Barb @ A Life in Balance recently posted…new year’s eve activity for kids: “my favorites for 2013″ bannerMy Profile

  5. Kelekona says:

    I have internalized enough food blog posts and other general recipes to use the following technique. I wander the produce and meat section, know in general what I already have, and assemble a loose plan while I look for deals on the staples I use a lot of.

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