Intro to Meal Planning: $70/week Meal Plan


Though I have been dabbling with the idea for some time now, it wasn't until last month that I jumped on the meal planning bandwagon.  Before I started staying home with my son, it was very easy to go to the grocery store every other day and drop $50 each time on even the most nonessential of items.  Heck, most times I would just swipe my debit card without even looking at the total--yikes!

However, since becoming a one-income family, I am definitely trying my best to master my budgeting skills.  After visiting another SAHM friend's home and seeing her beautiful meal planning white board in the kitchen, I decided to bust out mine from the old college days.  It now adorns my kitchen wall and has been a true Godsend in helping me budget and meal prep.

Since beginning meal planning, I am so happy to say that we have successfully cut in half our typical $100-$150 weekly grocery bill.  This was done simply by being more mindful of what we make and purchase in advance.  It has also led me to stop wasting as much food as we did before.  Anything leftover makes a great next day lunch, thus saving a little but more money.

That being said, I have put together a sample weekly meal plan for you to follow along with as well as the prices per each item.  In the list below I will just be showing only our dinner items, since we typically eat simpler meals for breakfast and lunch (shakes, sandwiches, leftovers, etc.)  The cost of those items is included in the $70, though it may vary based on the size of your family and how much you eat.

Note: I plan my weeks Monday through Friday.  Saturday and Sunday usually consist of leftovers and the occasional dinner out.




Monday:

Chicken Chile Verde in the Crock Pot w/ Red Pepper Quinoa/Rice blend
  • 3 chicken breasts -- $12 (this is for a six lb/approx. 9 breast package that I buy this at Sam's Club.  The remaining breasts will be used throughout the week.)
  • Great Value Chile Verde -- $2.50
  • 1 can Rotel tomatoes with habaneros -- $.98
  • One pages Old El Paso tortillas -- $1.88  
  •  Near East Red Pepper  Quinoa/Rice blend -- $2.50

Tuesday:

Oven Roasted Turkey w/ green beans
  • Festive Frozen All White Meat Turkey Loaf -- $4
  • French Style Fresh Green Beans -- $2
 Wednesday:

Sundried Tomato Mozzarella Chicken Rollatini
  • 3 chicken breast -- included above
  • 1 jar Classico Sundried Tomato Pesto -- $2.98
  • Great Value Mozzarella shredded cheese (2 lb bag) -- $2
  •  Italian bread crumbs -- $2
Thursday:

Turkey Meatloaf w/ Garden Mix Salad
  • 1.5 lb ground turkey -- $9 (I buy mine by the 3 lb package so there is more to use over the weekend)
  • Italian bread crumbs -- included above
  • Onion -- $.98
  • 1 can cream of chicken soup -- $1
  • Market Fresh organic salad -- $4.50
  • Salad dressing -- $3
  
Friday:

 Baked Chicken Parmesan w/ Veggie Noodles
  • 3 chicken breasts -- included above
  • Italian bread crumbs -- included above
  • Great Value Parmesan cheese (2 lb bag) --  $2
  • Prego Marinara -- $1.98
  • Barilla Veggie Noodles -- $1.38


Additional Items:

Sarah Lee Honey Wheat sandwich bread -- $2.50
Oscar Meyer Shaved Ham sandwich meat -- $5 (I purchase this at Sam's Club in 2 lb packages.  They usually last us two weeks.)
1 lb Gala apples -- $1.50
One dozen eggs -- $2
One gallon milk -- $2


Total: $69.68

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