“People say they don’t have time to cook, yet in the last few years we have found an extra two hours a day for the internet.”~Michael Pollan
This meal plan is for a family of 3. We often have at least one friend or family member over to share a meal with us during the week. Since I factor the cost of the meal when I first prepare it, leftovers will be marked as $0. When we dine out, it comes from a different part of the family budget and those expenses will also show $0.
Kid Konnection Meal
One night a week, we help with the children’s program at church.
Garlic Bread using leftover buns from the freezer
Approximate cost—$0, from church budget
Ways I saved on this meal—I bought a huge amount of Ronzoni pasta earlier in the year when it was on sale at Kroger and I had coupons that made it free. We’ll use the whole wheat pasta and some leftover cheese from a youth fundraiser. I’ll pick up some low sugar/no sugar added pasta sauce at the store and layer cooked pasta, sauce, and cheese. Then I pop it into the oven until the cheese is melted and slightly toasted. We have some hamburger buns leftover from Faithstock this weekend, and I’ll put them to use for this meal.
Carrots and Dip
Ways I saved on this meal—I bought some Carolina Pride bacon when it was BOGO and I had a coupon, making it very inexpensive per pound. I picked up bread for Faithstock at the Merita Bread Outlet, and while there I bought 3 loaves of whole wheat bread for our family. Since Kroger has upped the price of Roman Sungrain Bread to over $3, even with my coupons whole wheat bread would be more expensive there. Whenever I know I won’t get a better deal at another store, I try to swing into a bread outlet and pick up some bread. I freeze the extras and pull them out whenever we are running low. I picked the garden yesterday and was amazed to have so many red tomatoes still on the vines, hence the inspiration for this meal. The mayo is some Hellman’s that I bought at Kroger with a fantastic coupon and sale. The organic lettuce and organic carrots are from Kroger, and unfortunately weren’t that fantastic of a price. I could have bought them cheaper at Three Rivers or Ingles, but I was already at Kroger. The dip is the last of the Helluva brand that I picked up at a recent Mega Event at Kroger. The organic apples are some that I bought at Three Rivers. They are on sale through the 4th for $4.99 a bag.
Roast and Gravy
Ways I saved on this meal—The organic brown rice was bought in bulk, making it a little over a dollar a pound. Brown rice will keep for about a year, and whenever I see it on sale I try to buy at least 6 months worth. The roast is one of the last of the pieces of meat from the portion of the steer we bought earlier in the year. The price per pound was much less because we bought it in bulk. I’ll cook the roast on low for most of a day so that it is tender and delicious. I’ll make the gravy with the pan drippings and a bit of flour and butter. The carrots are some more of the organic ones I mentioned above.
The last of the salad greens
Ways I saved on this meal—Since this is a leftover meal, the cost is $0.
Breakfast for Supper
Toast Points and Homemade Jam
Ways I saved on this meal—I usually plan at least 1 breakfast for supper meal per week. These are usually fast meals for busy nights, and they cost less because they usually rely on eggs as the source of protein. Egg scramble is easier than making an omelet. Cook your veggies in a bit of olive oil or butter until tender. Add your eggs that you’ve whisked with a bit of cream or milk. Stir them to cook as you would scrambled eggs and in the last minute or so of cooking add the cheese. The eggs were bought from a local farmer for only $2 per dozen. The veggies will be from the garden and what we’ve preserved in the freezer. The cheese was bought on sale at Kroger. I’ll use some of the summer berries we froze earlier this year with a bit of peaches I canned and some bananas and apples to make the salad. The discount on the bread was mentioned above.
Peppers, Onions, and Tomato Kebobs
Ways I saved on this meal—I found another pound of lamb in the freezer that I need to use before we buy anymore. I’ll ask Hubby to make up some small patties and grill them for us. Since he will have the grill heated, the peppers, onions, and tomatoes will be good to throw on the grill. I have three options for the beans, depending on what time allows. If I have enough in the garden, I’ll make green beans or lima beans. If I have a chance to run to the farmers market, I’ll buy some there. If I can’t do either of those options, I’ll soak some dry beans from the pantry and make those.
Supper at a friend’s house
Ways I saved on this meal—Once I learn more about what they will be serving, I’ll most likely bring something. One of our daughter’s closest friend’s is having a birthday this week, and we’ll be celebrating her.