Custom Meal Category Columns

Each meal planning grid is comprised of the rows (representing each day of the menu) and columns (representing the meal – eg. breakfast). You can edit the columns of your meal planning grid in two ways:

First – all meal plans have editable column titles that can be changed and modified for each meal plan.

Second – the change the default labels so that you always start with the columns of your choice, head over to settings and define each meal category default.

Meal plans without specific dates

For each meal plan, you have the option of selecting two calendar modes. Use the “Calendar Mode” pick list on the right just above the meal planning grid.

  • Day Numbers: Here you will be able to switch to a given number of days rather than specific dates.
  • Specific Dates: This will allow you to assign specific calendar dates to a meal plan.

Shopping for multiple meal plans

Some users have expressed a need to aggregate multiple shopping lists.  This can be a useful tool particularly in two circumstances:

  1. You have two upcoming groups and want to shop for both of them together rather than each one separately.  In these instances, having a combined shopping list might be most helpful
  2. You would like to shop “pre-season” for bulk items and non-perishables and want to estimate the entire quantity for the upcoming months.

To aggregate multiple meal plan shopping lists into one master PDF, use the “Export Lists” button  on the meal plan page

This function will allow you to decide which lists to aggregate and also apply a multiplier in the event you want to also include estimates for future similar groups.

Viewing a finished Meal Plan

After clicking “Save Meal Plan & Create Shopping Lists” you’ll be able to view the final meal plan, shopping list and recipes scaled to size. Shopping lists can be viewed in four formats:

  1. Web: The web page will display a shopping list as well as recipes scaled to size for each recipe. The shopping list will be sorted first by store and second by department within that store so that you can easily and efficiently plan your shopping trip.
  2. Excel: If you’d like to edit or sort the shopping list, downloading the excel version of the shopping list is your best option.
  3. PDF: If you’d like to print or email a shopping list and meal plan in order to share or have a hard-copy, click the “PDF” button.
  4. Mobile App: A Wholesum shopping list app is available in the Apple iPhone and Android App Stores.   This will give you access to shopping lists already created in your account, synced between devices.

HINT:  You can control some elements of the PDF output from “PDF Settings” within “My Profile”

HINT:  Want to share the shopping list with someone outside of your organization or without your Wholesum account access?  You can just copy and paste the PDF URL link at the top of your browser and anyone with that link will be able to see a real-time menu and shopping list.  All saved updates will be reflected at this link.

Accessing & Cloning Saved Meal Plans

You can always access past and saved meal plans from the homepage or using the navigation bar.    Meal plans can be edited, cloned or deleted at any time.

HINT:   If you have an upcoming group that closely resembles one of your past groups, the “clone” meal plan option might save you time planning and selecting meals. Simply click the “Clone” link within meal plan, rename the group and adjust the number of individuals and/or meals selected.

Creating Meal Plans


Now that you’ve created all of your recipes and managed the ingredients within those recipes, it’s time to start assembling your meal plans. After initial setup, the recipe and ingredient functions will only need to be maintained, and regular meal planning will become a swift and painless process that pulls from that information.

Creating Meal Plans

To create a meal plan, click on “Create Meal Plans & Shopping List” from the homepage:

Creating your meal plan happens in 3 basic steps:

  1. Name, Number of Individuals, & Group Descriptions

Naming your group will allow you to access or edit it at a later date. Enter the number of individuals by appetite size (small, medium or large) and any notes that you’d like to be included in the final meal plan.  If the group will vary in size throughout the duration of the event, use the maximum number of individuals that will be served.  You will have an opportunity to decrease the number of individuals served per meal in the final step.

  1. Determine Group Dietary Restrictions (Optional)

Select which common dietary restrictions individuals may have in your group.  In the next step, recipes containing those dietary restrictions will be highlighted with a small warning so that you can avoid recipes as needed.  For more advanced automatic dietary restriction calculations see section 4.3 of this manual.

  1. Add Recipes to Meal Plan:

If you’d like, use the filters above your recipe list to focus on just the right meal(s).  Show specific categories (breakfast/lunch/dinner), hide allergens found in this group, or show only recipes with custom tags.

DATES:   First, define the start date and end date for the event being planned.  The meal planning grid will grow and shrink as you define the dates.

MEAL SELECTION:  Drag and drop the selected meal into the appropriate cell in the meal-planning grid.

As recipes are added to the meal planning grid, they will also be added to the final list of meals below.  There is one additional optional variable that can be controlled in this list:

# of Individuals Served: This field will default to the full amount, that is all members of the group will eat this meal. If, however, some members of the group will not be partaking in a meal you can glide this slider down to the number of individuals that will eat this meal.