Give me a sample non-veg'n menu for $150/wk - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 25 Old 03-20-2009, 12:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have noticed on the "how much do you spend per month on groceries" threads that most people who post spend WAY less than we do. I easily spend $1000 a month at various grocery stores for a family of 4, 2 of whom are small children. This includes cheap wine and some toiletries. But still, I am way over the $500 and less I am seeing on these threads.

We are not vegetarian and my DH will not eat eggs or beans, so the most obvious [to me] cost cutting choices are not there.

Would some of our more thrifty/creative mamas post some of your menus (daily or weekly) so I can get some ideas of what I could try? Do you have certain nights of the week that are set aside for a specific budget meal, like spaghetti night or whatever?

Thank you!
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#2 of 25 Old 03-20-2009, 02:43 AM
 
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We spend $150/week. Starting THIS week, I will be able to bump it up to $200/week, but that will be used to buy meat and stock up with.

I do budget meals to make it work, and my dh does not really care for eggs and beans either, and I always buy chicken in bulk...we use a lot of chicken around here.

Spaghetti-Ground beef cooked up with onions and garlic, put into sauce, and use ground sausage and make mini meatballs to put into sauce. I usually use 1 1/2 lbs of ground beef and 2 lbs of the sausage (my kids LOVE the meatballs lol). Get some french bread and make a garlic or cheese spread for it and you've got a hearty meal.

Chicken with Bacon and Cheese-Take a chicken breast and pound it until it is not too thick but not too thin, a good medium size. Put lemon pepper and salt on it for a seasoning, cook in a pan for a few minutes on each side...enough to just brown them, not cook all the way through. Grab 2-3 pieces of bacon (already cooked up), place on top of it, grab a handful of cheese (we use cheddar or a mexican style 4 cheese blend) and throw it on top, put a lid on it, let the chicken finish cooking through and the cheese melt on it..........yummy. Make with some crash hot potatoes and its a full meal for cheap. (can also make into a sandwhich by putting on a bun)

Roast-The obvious in the crock pot with veggies and potatoes. I usually buy a HUGE one, enough to ensure leftovers. I shred the remaining meat up, and make burritos with them using pinto/refried beans (dh will only eat beans like this, with meat in the meal), some fried potatoes to go in the burrito and some jalapenos mixed in, and make some spanish rice and avocado (if on sale) for the side.

When italian sausage is on sale, I grab to packs of them and make a pasta dish with them.

Chicken pepperonata

Braised Chicken

Homemade chicken strips, mashed potatoes and corn

Sheperds Pie

Tostadas

Chicken tacos or fajitas

Twice baked potatoes

Homemade pizza

stir fry

Ravoili

Kosher hot dogs with potatoe salad

Burgers with bacon and cheese, with fresh fruit on the side

This is just a general rotation I go through.

Hth!!
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#3 of 25 Old 03-22-2009, 12:55 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greenmansions View Post
I have noticed on the "how much do you spend per month on groceries" threads that most people who post spend WAY less than we do. I easily spend $1000 a month at various grocery stores for a family of 4, 2 of whom are small children. This includes cheap wine and some toiletries. But still, I am way over the $500 and less I am seeing on these threads.

We are not vegetarian and my DH will not eat eggs or beans, so the most obvious [to me] cost cutting choices are not there.

Would some of our more thrifty/creative mamas post some of your menus (daily or weekly) so I can get some ideas of what I could try? Do you have certain nights of the week that are set aside for a specific budget meal, like spaghetti night or whatever?

Thank you!
you are spending 250$ per person if you generally spend 1000$ per month. i generally spend at least 200$ per person and we have a fam of 6 so we often spend about 1200$ or more per month, including toiletries, pet food ect, though we dont drink alcohol.

i seriously have found it not possible to eat the healthy (and delicious!) foods i want us to eat and not spend so much. partly it is that we can afford to spend what we spend on food. we are fortunate in this i know. but there are luxuries we don't have the money for because we feel food is so high on our priority list of expenses. often on mdc i read of families somehow only spending 50$ per person a month and i am sure this is challenging as all get out! i know that is simply where many people are at financially.

i think there are ways to make many a meal thriftier if you want/need to. for example instead of buying canned beans you could soak and prepare your own dry beans. or instead of eating grass-fed organic meat you COULD eat non-organic but still "natural" meat. another way to save money is to still buy great grass-fed meat but only serve about 1/6 lb per person. i find just a few slices of a steak to be very satisfying.

some meals that we often have that i think are fairly thrifty include:

chili with ground beef and dry beans that have first been soaked overnight in water and a bit of whey

salmon poached in coconut milk with rice

roast chicken with roasted root veggies- often the chicken serves us two meals at least.
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#4 of 25 Old 03-22-2009, 01:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks mamas for the tips, I will try some of these ideas. Arismama!, we so far can afford to eat the way we do too. But DH is getting laid off this summer (his site is closing) and we are trying to save money in case it take a long time to find a new job. Never mind that once the job is gone, things are going to HAVE to change, and I'd like to figure it out now and ease us all into it. I really hate to give up the foods that we do eat organic and go back to "regular" but I am going to do so for items that are less risky.

I think I also have to circle back to chicken and ground turkey, homemade pizza, tacos, spaghetti, etc, and maybe have a 2 week rotating menu til I get used to that, then expand to add a few more items. We eat a lot of fish right now, and red meat probably 3-6 times a month. DH is kind of sick of chicken (and potatoes, ravioli, and more) but he's just going to have to adjust.

I am also going to try to sneak some beans into things, pureed or something. Maybe DH won't notice. He has a strong texture aversion to beans and eggs. I'd love to have omelette, pancake and veg chili nights on the rotation, and after the layoff I'll start forcing the issue on these kinds of meals.
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#5 of 25 Old 03-22-2009, 02:20 AM
 
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We're not vegetarian either. I would be, but DH isn't inclined. Honestly, the way I've kept our grocery bills down is 1- better planning 2- more meatless meals 3 - freezing meat that's on special. I'm not great at using leftovers, so I tend to freeze meals rather than try and reuse ingredients in the same week. He was a really picky eater to start with but over the years I've introduced him to foods from other cultures, and he now tucks right in to a curry, or an asian noodle dish. A lot of these are heavy on the veg and light on the meat, so I make them a lot. He also eats beans which helps. I've gradually phased down the amount of meat we eat, and I make sure he gets hearty meals so he really doesn't notice the lack. Every now and then I'll cook up a big steak or a massive roast and he'll go to town on the meat.

We also have a lemon tree, and trade fruit with family. So at the moment, we're eating peaches because FSIL's parents have peaches by the bucketload coming off their tree.

This week's meal plan:
Sunday: Pumpkin Soup, fresh bread, followed by peaches
Monday: Vegetarian noodles
Tuesday: Cottage Pie with side green salad, peach crumble and custard
Wednesday: Fresh bean salad and leftover cottage pie
Thursday: Risotto with leek and bacon, fruit platter.
Friday: Vegetable Curry
Saturday: Pasta with creamy tomato sauce
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#6 of 25 Old 03-22-2009, 09:49 PM
 
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I estimate I spend ~400 a month on food. We eat mostly organic, however, we grow a lot of our own food, and can/dry/freeze it (I still have green beans, tomatoes, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, peaches, and am just running out of bell peppers frozen from last year, along with canned tomatoes & grean beans, pickled jalapenos, banana peppers, various jams/jellies, applesauce, applebutter from last year, dried zucchini, peaches, tomatoes.. and probably other things I'm forgetting). We also hunt (deer), fish (mostly walleye & northern pike, from canada & lake eerie), raise chickens for meat & eggs, and buy goats & lambs from our friends locally... SO, mostly my food bill is focused on apples, oranges, grains & beans, pasta, coconut milk, milk, cheese... basics. If I had to buy everything we eat? It'd probably be twice as high, assuming I was buying organic. If I switched to conventional, I could probably keep it about where it is.
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#7 of 25 Old 03-24-2009, 01:44 AM
 
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Thought I'd post this weeks menu and some ideas for you. We spend $400/month on groceries. At the beginning of the month I do a general meal plan and buy meat for the month. I spend $100 on meat, $50 on pantry items (flour, rice, etc.) then I have $50/week for fresh, and $50 extra for milk/eggs/butter/cheese etc that we pick up at the store in our village as needed. This method keeps us from over spending, keeps us eating fresh delicious food and feeds us well.

This week:
Monday: Oven cooked a roast on a bed of onion slices and and garlic. Served with gravy and horseradish mashed potatoes with the onion and garlic smashed in. (so good!), and spinach salad.
Tuesday: I will throw half the remaining roast in bbq sauce and some red wine in the crock pot and let it simmer on low all day. Then shred the meat and serve on buns with veggies and dip.
Wednesday: beef soup with poato dumplings. I cut up the remaining roast and add it to beef stock, the left over gravy, onions, garlic, carrot, celery, spicy peppers and shredded spinach. Then I use the left over potatoes from monday and mix in an egg and some flour, and roll into small balls. When they are floating they are cooked, and very yummy.
Thursday: grilled salmon steaks with dill sauce and spinach rice. (we eat a lot of spinach around here )
Friday: Roast chicken with spicy sweet potatoes and salad.
Saturday: Chicken enchiladas using chicken from yesterday. (I can give you the recipe if you like) and salsa salad.
Sunday: Spicy chicken and rice bake.
Monday: Chicken noodle soup. (as I will be making chicken stock anyways)

I am not crunchy enough for this forum. Everyday I get a little crunchier though! :
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#8 of 25 Old 03-24-2009, 02:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks again mamas

lil_earthmomma, yes I'll take that chicken enchilada recipe and the salsa salad too.. I notice you use the leftovers in new ways for several days. I have not done that in general - they are either gone, or we are sick of whatever meat it was after the second meal with it and want a change. That said, I think I will try it again - you certainly have good variety in the foods. The beef soup with the dumplings sounds great esp with spicy peppers. Yum.

Katie Bonita what is cottage pie?
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#9 of 25 Old 03-24-2009, 04:21 AM
 
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It's got a few names, but here's the recipe.

Cottage Pie
Ingredients
2 cups leftover mashed potatoes
3 tablespoons Canola oil
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 pound chuck beef, finely chopped or ground
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/4 cup beef stock
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
Pinch nutmeg
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon butter
Procedure
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Meanwhile, pour the oil into a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and carrots. Cook until softened, about 15 minutes. Add the beef. Cook until well browned, about 10 to 15 minutes.
2. Pour off any accumulated fat in the skillet. Sprinkle flour atop the beef and vegetables. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Then add the stock and the thyme, rosemary, and nutmeg. Stir and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or until thickened. Season with salt and lots of pepper.
3. Dump the meat mixture into a 9-inch square baking dish and spread out into an even layer. Carefully spoon on the mashed potatoes and spread them out evenly. Make little patterns with a fork all over of the mashed potatoes to create a rough surface. Add little pieces of the butter all over the top. Place in the oven and cook for 35 minutes. Remove, let cool for 5 minutes. Serve.
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#10 of 25 Old 03-24-2009, 02:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks KatieBonita - that is like what we call shepherds pie.
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#11 of 25 Old 03-30-2009, 03:51 AM
 
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I don't eat red meat, but we eat other meat, and I find that we spend about $800-$1000/mo on food. We try to buy all organic, and that really adds up - cheese, yogurt, produce, chicken, etc. A basket of organic strawberries (a large basket, not the tiny pint one) is going for $6 at our local store, and my kids will eat one of those in an evening.

The only way I have found to save money is to go to Trader Joes first and buy whatever I can there. Then I go across the street to Whole Foods and get the rest.
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#12 of 25 Old 03-30-2009, 03:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't eat red meat, but we eat other meat, and I find that we spend about $800-$1000/mo on food. We try to buy all organic, and that really adds up - cheese, yogurt, produce, chicken, etc. A basket of organic strawberries (a large basket, not the tiny pint one) is going for $6 at our local store, and my kids will eat one of those in an evening.

The only way I have found to save money is to go to Trader Joes first and buy whatever I can there. Then I go across the street to Whole Foods and get the rest.
Yeah i have started keeping a price book and several grocery lists. In a month's time I hit all the stores - TJ's, our local coop, costco, safeway, etc. When I do this I think it saves us money over time because I stock up on things when they are on sale etc. TJ's is a huge benefit too, and a new one opened up on the way to my kids' preschool so it's easy to stop in there weekly now, rather than make a big trip every month or two.

Pork tenderloin was on sale this week - we got 2 dinners out of it, and had my mom over for one of them. So that worked out well and was less pricey. I wish I'd bought some for the freezer but I wasn't thinking...
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#13 of 25 Old 04-07-2009, 01:57 PM
 
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This week our grocery bill was $125, a little high for us, but here's our menu:

Sunday: Chicken and olive pizza on storebought crust with a salad
Monday: Breaded Tilapia, peas, mashed potatoes, salad for the picky non pea eating boy.
Tuesday: Chicken, carrots, edamame, and rice
Wednesday: Steak, zucchini and cherry tomato dill couscous with feta
Thursday: We'll have to eat out early due to schedule, then Triscuts and cheese for a late snack
Friday: Rotini and cheese casserole with bacon and tomatoes
Saturday: Chicken and Black Bean burritos.

Breakfasts: cereal, strawberry shakes, eggs and bacon, bagels and cream cheese, pancakes if I feel like it.

Lunches/Snacks: canned soup, PB&J, salads, grilled cheese, spaghetti, applesauce, bananas.

Desserts: Chocolate pudding, tapioca pudding, cookies, jelly beans, Easter chocolates, dried pineapple, strawberry yogurt shakes, cereal.
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#14 of 25 Old 04-07-2009, 02:42 PM
 
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I'm trying to get my grocery bill under $300 a month, which really shouldn't be difficult considering we raise our own meat (except chicken) and eat mostly whole, organic or local foods. But we like snacks.

I went grocery shopping on April 1 and spent around $40. This is my meal plan so far for the month and I shouldn't need to go back until next week at least.

tacos
spaghetti
grilled fish and veggies, roasted potatoes
grilled steak, salad, fettucine alfredo
ham and potato soup, bread
ham & pineapple kabobs, stir fried veggies, roasted potatoes
quesadillas
breaded pork chops, mashed potatoes, green beans
burritos
pork stir fry - leftover pork chops
breakfast - sausage, fried eggs, toast, fried potatoes
fried potatoes and sausage
pork roast, mashed potatoes
pulled pork sandwiches, roasted potatoes
and I cooked a roast for sandwiches

We had several nights of leftovers as dh cooked and he cooks a lot plus he brought some stuff from work.
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#15 of 25 Old 04-11-2009, 05:04 PM
 
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I cook pretty much every thing from scratch. I made a lot of soups and stews in the winter, we eat it for 2 or so meals and freeze the rest.
Here is what we ate in the last week or so:

Beef barley stew (from freezer)
Split pea soup (with left over ham from freezer)
Caribbean peas (Goya Gandules) and rice (made in rice cooker, also using leftover ham bits. I improvised from the recipe on the can, using what we had)
Salmon cakes (we get canned salmon from WIC, used stale saltines up) with salad and home picked beets
Steak, potatoes, salad (we had just bought our $100 freezer pack of grass fed beef from a local farmer that day)
Steak tacos (with leftover steak, stretched with canned black beans made into refried beans), cabbage & grated carrot salad
Hamburger stroganoff w/ left over potatoes (not the most nutritious meal, but we had been given a bunch of free sour cream. At least it was organic grass fed beef)
Thai style peanut noodles w/ rice noodles, zucchini, chicken breast (on sale, from freezer) homemade peanut sauce improvised from peanut butter.

Sweets and snacks: oranges, bananas (these are cheap right now), homemade oatmeal cookies, homemade pudding (made with 50% less sugar than recipe. I make a triple batch and put it in pyrex custard cups in fridge, for instant gratification snack), banana milkshake (we buy big quantities of cheap over ripe bananas and freeze. Put bananas in the blender with milk, 1 spoon sugar (optional) and 1 t. vanilla. This has quelled DP’s ice cream habit. Can also put in other frozen fruit, but we used up the summer berries long ago.

Other snacks/lunches: Popcorn w/ nutritional yeast and spice mixture, quesadilla w/ homemade pickled red onion and cabbage. Pickled eggs (made from easter eggs), pickled mixed vegetables, toaster oven pizza (using up stale bread or rolls revived with some water). Tortilla soup (chicken broth from freezer w/ stale tortillas, cheese, any suitable left over veggies or meat).

You will notice very little fresh vegetables on this menu, because our winter CSA ended and the Spring/Summer one has not yet begun. I hope to never cook another turnip or parsnip again! Seriously though, getting a CSA has been one of our best ways to eat organically and frugally. Everything that we could not eat within the week I canned, pickled or froze. I was pregnant, not employed and very nest-y.
We spend about $50 per week to feed 2 adults, one doing manual labour and one nursing. Much of this is spent in advance, as I mentioned above. We could probably trim this further by eating fewer sweets. Our large supermarket has milk and butter at stupidly cheap prices as loss leaders, so we don’t get those organic. I have compared prices across the co-op, super market and ethic stores and get things in bulk when they are on sale, or when I am near that cheap source. Many pantry items like brown rice, oatmeal, etc are cheaper in bulk, but others like raisins and dry beans are not cheaper in the bulk bins. I get certain foods: canned coconut milk, spices, tortillas at Asian or Hispanic markets where they are cheaper. We also get WIC and barter some labour for OG goat milk, goat meat and eggs. In addition to eating seasonally and locally as much as possible, I try to find creative ways to use up left over bits. I cook a lot of ethnic dishes that use less meat. That is what we do, I hope you see some ideas that will work for your family!
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#16 of 25 Old 04-11-2009, 05:11 PM
 
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Subbing and will post later.

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#17 of 25 Old 04-12-2009, 08:47 PM
 
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We spend less than that and you can see most of what we eat on my blog (in sig). I think using your freezer and planned leftovers are key! I have a link on the right side of my blog that talks about how to use meal planning to pinch pennies. Maybe it will help?

Mama to (DS 7) and (DD 5), wife to DH

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#18 of 25 Old 04-13-2009, 01:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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that blog is great!
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#19 of 25 Old 04-14-2009, 10:06 AM
 
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We spend about $150 every 2 weeks. There are two adults, one toddler (who honestly isn't a huge eater), and one baby (baby food still). My dh takes his lunch every day, and I'm a SAHM, so this is for all 21 meals. Occasionally, we eat out, but that comes from our entertainment budget. We like wine , but I'm happy with two (or three, around here) buck chuck. This does not include any other liquor or beer.

I do find it hard to keep it to that level. I used to have $200 every 2 weeks, and that was a lot easier. We live in a medium cost of living area. For example, I can get bone-in chicken breasts on sale (every 8-10 weeks) for $1/lb. Whole chicken for $0.79/lb. Ground beef for $1.50-$2/lb. Roasts and London broil for $2.29/lb. Prices like that. If your prices are much higher, your total budget is going to be higher.

We like beans at my house. We have a "beany" meal once a week, more for variety than anything. It also helps the budget, though. We also like breakfast for supper, and once a week, we have that. Again, though, it started more for variety and to provide an easy, easy meal on Sunday nights (my most hated night to cook).

This week:
Fri: black bean/sweet potato burritos
Sat: broc cheese soup (lunch), shrimp scampi over linguine, salad (supper)
Sun: pizza (lunch), biscuits adn gravy (supper)
Mon: grits and grillades, salad
Tues: white bean/chicken chili
Wed: fried chicken livers, rice, lima beans
Thurs: tacos (my dh's favorite meal of all time; we have it twice a month)

Lunches are planned on the weekends. The week is leftovers or leftover, frozen soup or Ramen or tuna usually.

Breakfast is cooked on the weekends (eggs, toast, grits, etc). During the week is oatmeal, bagels (just grocery store ones), or eggs/toast.
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#20 of 25 Old 04-14-2009, 10:26 AM
 
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I think a lot of how much each person here on MDC spends each week has to do with where they live, so don't forget to take that into account. It would be hard to match my low cost of living budget on the west coast, for example.

We spend between $50 & $100 a week on groceries including pet food and household supplies. Our diet varies according to what is on sale and in season. I can give you last week's menus as an example, but keep in mind we do not always eat this much ham!

Breakfasts- Pasteries (free from DH's work, we usually don't get these!), milk, bananas. Normally we have cereal, oatmeal, eggs, toast or leftovers.
Lunches- the kids eat at school usually, or we have PB & J, yogurt & fruit, eggs, leftovers or soup
S- ham (49 cents/lb. I bought 4), rice, greenbeans (frozen from last year's garden), salad (free after coupons)
M- left over ham, mac-n-cheese, salad, corn
T- pasta (home made sauce), salad, bread
W- bean burritos & spanish rice
Th- jambalaya (made w/ ham and other left overs from the freezer)
F- soup & tuna sandwiches
S- leftovers

HTH

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#21 of 25 Old 04-15-2009, 09:08 PM
 
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We eat delicous fresh food, organic & in season, and ethically raised meat. The majority of our food is locally raised but we live in an urban environment and thus, can't raise anything ourselves.

We spend a lot on food and make it priority. And we've done so by spending a lot of money over the years. But our finances are changing somewhat and the economy stinks so we've been trying to do better. Meal planning helps us, especially with less waste. It is also easier and takes less time to prepare our meals when we have a couple of options. Even Whole Foods offers coupons and sales.

We start at the farmer's market ever week (year round in Southern California). We fill in with Trader Joes and Whole Foods. We buy most of our meat in bulk and have another freezer we use.

We do a pasta or homemade pizza once a week. One vegetarian meal, One mostly vegetarian meal, one or two fish, one freezer meal, and one or two poultry or meat. So, non-veg meals pretty often but in fairly small amounts. We always will split a steak, etc.

This week...

Sunday - almost always fish/shellfish because there is acquaculture van + a fisherwoman at our market

Clam Chowder with potatoes and bacon (fresh clams are farm raised under good conditions, pork is pastured, potatoes are local, but the meal is not expensive)

Monday

Soft omlette with fresh morels, green garlic, and cave-aged gruyere; Herb Salad (Lovely meal. One expensive ingredient (morels are $30/pd) but I only need $10 for all of us. This isn't cheap, per se, but it isn't expensive to me)

Tuesday
Cauliflower, spinach, and chickpeas with Indian spices; Brown Rice and Yogurt

Wednesday
Duck (salted and air dried for two days) on the smoker
Farro with fresh favas, mint, parsley, and some sort of shaved cheese

Thursday
Big gorgeous pastured pork chops, 2 for the 3 of us
Sprouted Broccoli saute
Chocolate pudding!

Friday
Something from the freezer, probably chicken pot pie with an all butter pie crust topping and peas; maybe soup from the soup swap last week with cheesy toasts

Saturday
Sloppy Joes with Fabulous Buttery Buns from a locally bakery (day old and frozen). Herb Salad.
http://www.thekitchn.com/thekitchn/m...py-joes-058069

Usually we cook something big on Saturday, both in a time consuming way and in triplicate. This way we always have some good homecooked goodies after a long day. We love our foodsaver. But this Saturday will be busy so we won't.

Lunch is usually some type of leftovers for SAHD DH and 22m DS. If there is enough I do too. Breakfast is almost always oatmeal (made in big batches and frozen) or a pb&j as I walk out the door or cheap organic raisen bran from TJs.
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#22 of 25 Old 04-15-2009, 11:39 PM
 
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Haven't read the replies and don't have a ton of time, but one way we keep our budget down is by relying often on eggs (pastured, so not cheap at $7 here in CA, but still less than meat), both at breakfast and sometimes at dinner. A simple vegetable soup can often be filled out by poaching an egg in the broth.
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#23 of 25 Old 04-15-2009, 11:43 PM
 
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Just wanted to say, after I saw that your dh doesn't eat eggs, don't forget that breakfast and lunch are just as if not more important than dinner. The other 3 of you can do eggs at breakfast and make a big dent in your protein needs. My ds eats oatmeal and yogurt at lunch - very hearty. Make sure you're not buying value-added snacks - but nuts instead of nut bars, fruit instead of fruit wraps, etc. Eat cheese for a snack to get more protein. All of that stuff adds up at lot!
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#24 of 25 Old 04-21-2009, 12:55 PM
 
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I usually just read threads, but I wanted to say a HUGE thanks to all of you for great cost cutting ideas that still support healthy organic eating!
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#25 of 25 Old 04-21-2009, 01:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmmom View Post
Just wanted to say, after I saw that your dh doesn't eat eggs, don't forget that breakfast and lunch are just as if not more important than dinner. The other 3 of you can do eggs at breakfast and make a big dent in your protein needs. My ds eats oatmeal and yogurt at lunch - very hearty. Make sure you're not buying value-added snacks - but nuts instead of nut bars, fruit instead of fruit wraps, etc. Eat cheese for a snack to get more protein. All of that stuff adds up at lot!
I am noticing that snacks are an issue for us. My kids love crackers, veggie booty and all that kind of stuff. I have cut back a bit, but they aren't thrilled with the replacements I've offered. Yet. I am going to keep at it, because I do see this as an area of our grocery budget where spending can go down.

Dinners still end up being pricey, but the past few weeks I have made at least one dish per week that provides lots of leftovers - turkey sloppy joes, spaghetti sauce and the like. We still really like the single grilled piece of meat/fish plus steamed veggies type of meal, but I'm cutting back on how many nights a week we do that. I am also taking a look at the meat/fish portion sizes and cutting back by 2 ounces from what we're used to, with a 4 ounce minimum portion size. I think that will help our waistlines too...

JudiAU, your menu sounds particularly fabulous. We have also started having a weekly pizza night. That is very cost effective for us, and there are always leftovers for lunch the next day.

Thanks for all the great ideas mamas. This thread has been very helpful for me.
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