The Dinner Solution – Software Review

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on June 10, 2009

After the giveaway a few weeks ago for The Dinner Solution Software, the ladies asked if they could send me a copy of the software to use and review!

Yes, please! Of course! I’d love to try it out and share my experience with you all!

It was approaching June 1st, so I decided I’d use the software to create my monthly meal plan for June. The software downloaded and opened without any difficulties. I clicked right onto “Plan Your Meals on the Calendar” and there I was!

First, I loaded the monthly menu with the recipes they had pre-programmed into the software. And then I went and added my own recipes into the software to fill up the month.  This process was quick and easy, and now some of our favorite meals are saved in the software.

After picking the main dish for each night, I went in and added complementary side dishes for each meal (these too were pre-programmed into the software).

From there, I printed out the grocery list. Yes! It makes a grocery list for you!!!

Woot!

I glanced through the list and crossed off what I already had on hand…which was several items…because the recipes use common ingredients that are found in most pantries, refrigerators, and freezers! And I was ready to hit the store!

The software also offers “freezer meal” options so if you wish to make meals ahead or “double” meals to stash the unused portion in the freezer. The freezer meal portion of the software comes complete with recipes, instructions, labels and a freezer inventory list, so you can easily keep track of what little goodies are hidden in your freezer.

I loved that the meals were pre-programmed into the software. During this VERY busy month of my life, it really took the edge off the perpetual question of “What’s for dinner?” and “What else different can we have this month?” It was refreshing to have a tool that told me what to eat and told me what to buy!

I highly recommend The Dinner Solution software to help in your meal planning endeavors!  It is well worth the investment! Ordering information can be found here.

*Disclosure: I did receive a free copy of the software and was not paid to write this review.

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Kylee June 10, 2009 at 12:26 pm

Where can we buy it, and how much does it cost?

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Erin June 10, 2009 at 12:30 pm

Oops! I forgot to add those links in! I just updated the post!

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Gwenn June 10, 2009 at 2:09 pm

That software looks awesome! Too bad it’s a little pricey. I’ll start saving my pennies.

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rose June 10, 2009 at 3:14 pm

a bit to pricey for my budget.

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Diane Bramos June 10, 2009 at 5:49 pm

I did purchase it and have been working with it. I did not like the recipes that came with the program. My family has many food issues (celiac and a few allergies) so we had to delete them immediately. Also, I found those particular recipes to not be as healthy as I prefer. However, what I do like is you can enter your own recipes so I have been busily adding my recipes – all of them, even the breads I bake. I can then print out EVERYTHING I need/have planned for the week. That is fabulous! I used Mastercook but it printed out reports that were hard to use and I had to check off what I wanted within the program. This program bases it on the planning I have done for the week. Lastly, I plan EVERYTHING, even breakfast and lunch. Just sub them as appetizers or side dishes. It seems pricey, but how often do you go out for dinner or do drive through because you do not know what to have or think you do not have the time for dinner. Add those up for the month and you probably have the cost of the program. I add a star sign (*) to each of my “quick” recipes that I can have made within 20 minutes start to finish for easier finding on those days I know will be cramped for time. It is well worth it, especially when adding your own healthy recipes.

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Ali (Whole Life Nutrition) June 11, 2009 at 1:01 am

Erin –

Thanks so much for sharing the info about this software! I need to go look into it further.

Back in my Personal Chef days I used something called MasterCook – have you ever used this, and if so, how does it compare to The Dinner Solution software?

Thanks! Ali :)

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Erin June 11, 2009 at 7:39 am

Hey Ali…I have never used Master Cook, so can’t make a comparison!

Erin

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Wanda June 11, 2009 at 9:32 am

On the upside, this sounds like a great solution for preventing those “Yikes,-I-forgot-to-get-something-out-of-the-freezer…what-will-I-fix-for-dinner-now?” nights. There is a lot of thought and effort put into this software. The price is good for all that is offered. On the downside, the price is a bit out of range for those who are being crunched right now with the turmoil going on in the economy. I agree with Diane B. that if you add up those times of a quick jaunt to the local fast food joint because the time got away from you and suddenly it’s “What’s for dinner?” time, it would pay for itself quite soon. The only other downside I have is that it is Windows only software. Mac users like to plan ahead, too. Make it Mac friendly…PLEASE!

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Jessica June 11, 2009 at 8:52 pm

I use Shop’NCook. Its a great software for Mac. I don’t know if its available for PCs but I love it. It organizes all of my recipes, menus, shopping lists, and more.

LOVE IT!!!

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Cindy June 11, 2009 at 11:25 pm

I am a huge fan of freezer cooking and have been doing it for years. I like the concept of it being organized on your computer and it seems user friendly. I think this a great tool for a beginner of OAMC. The cost is not to bad.

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TidyMom June 14, 2009 at 8:11 am

This software looks fantastic!! May be just what I need to get me out of my “what’s for dinner rut” – I’ve been needing to find a way to get more organized with dinner planning!!

Thanks for the info……….I’m off to check it out!

~TidyMom

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