I've often been interested in what others are buying and making for meals when it's closer to the end of a pay period and things are a little tighter. As part of our efforts to become debt free in 2013, I am looking closely at our grocery list and our grocery bills, but in lowering how much we spend, my goal is two-fold: to make meals my family enjoys (most of them anyway) and not to cut back so much that people are going hungry (with teen boys in the house that can be difficult!)
|Lunch: peanut butter sandwich with apple slices, |
golden raisins and currants
In this line of thinking, I'm going to put occasional weekly menu posts up, particularly when the recipes used are a "hit" and when the grocery bill is pretty minimal. This week fits both criterion so here are our meals for this week:
I am making five meals on this week's grocery list, because we get paid again on Monday. I spent $68, including a $3 tip for the bagger and a treat for the kids to share for good behaviour (marked down to $.38 per candy bag).
- Spaghetti with Tomatoes and Mozzerella, with fresh bread (I already have two half-boxes of spaghetti noodles, the recipe calls for fresh tomatoes, which I bought at 6 for $2.50, and fresh Mozzerella was $3.99 for 8 oz.)
- Black Beans and Mango Sauce with Wheat Tortillas (I already have dried black beans in the cabinet, with some cooked up already in the freezer) - Fresh mangoes were $1.50 each at the store, I bought two; Tortillas were $.88 for a pack of ten, and I do still have to find cilantro, since they were out at the store.
- Black Bean Burgers with Homemade Fries (I have the beans and rice for the burgers, I bought 18 eggs for $1.80 and a 5 lb. bag of potatoes for about $3)
- Stuffed Acorn Squash with baked Kale (I substituted collard greens for the kale because Kale was $.99 a lb., while Greens were on sale for $.25/lb. - never tried collard greens, so bought green beans in case they're gross - green beans were $.89/lb)
- Mediterranean Lentil Salad with St. Seraphim's Cake and home made fried bread/Naan (I had the lentils already at home along with a jar of artichoke hearts I've needed to use for a long time now. I bought a jar of olives for $3 to round this recipe off.)
For breakfast items, I have grits at home, I bought fruit - bananas, apples and kiwi (on sale at 4/$1) - and bought eggs. So for breakfast this week, we'll have pumpkin pancakes (I have pumpkin puree at home) or muffins, eggs and grits, left over cake.
I also had to spend $9 on dog food, $7.50 on diapers and wipes, and $1.44 on a box of crackers for the kids to snack on while we walked through the store. I normally use cloth, but got "caught with the baby's pants off," so to speak, when the baby pooped and I didn't have any cloth with me, so had to cave. There was a surcharge (read: non-tax "tax") and I got an extra $5 in cash - $3 for the tip (the baggers at the commissary work for tips only) and $2, really just to round it off.
What's on your meal list this week?
As an aside - if you want to see what I keep in the pantry to help stretch my meals when I have a little less money, I put that in a post in 2010. The post is old, I know, but I still keep many of these items close at hand. I'll do an updated post in the future, but what's written in this post will give a start. A second post that you might find helpful gives kitchen substitutions for when you're out of many of the "staple" items (think milk or eggs, etc) - it is hands-down one of my most-often-read posts!