Meal Planning Archives - Page 8 of 10 - I Heart Frugal

Meal Planning

Meal planning at it’s finest and the recipes to boot!

Smothered Pork – Easy Crock Pot Meal Planning Recipe

Smothered pork
Smothered pork – Easy, budget-friendly

Anyone hungry? This smothered pork slow cooker recipe is a favorite at our house. Even my kids eat it, which is not always the case. However, this recipe sounds so yummy but so complicated! Yet, if you follow along, you will see it is easy breezy with this simplified slow cooker recipe. Best of all, it is budget-friendly and can be quickly added to my Budget-friendly Two-week Meal Planning for under $75! 

As promised in my last post, I wanted to quickly churn out this recipe! You will now be ready for your Budget-Friendly Two-Week Meal Planning listed above.

This is a quick, easy recipe that can be made in under 10 minutes (not including cooking time). Keep reading and your dinner tonight will be fast, simple and make your family smile. Any recipe with cream of mushroom soup as an ingredient must be good!

For more money-saving tips follow me on Bloglovin‘, Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook.

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Budget Friendly Two-week Dinner Meal Planning – Under $75

Meal Planning on a Budget – Round 2 for under $75

Meal planning - 2 weeks under $75
Meal planning – 2 weeks of dinners under $75 with printables

Did you read Budget-Friendly Meal Planning? If not then click the link, but if you have followed me (hint, hint subscribe to new posts on below) then you may be getting tired of the first two weeks of meal planning and want some other options.

Just a quick recap! Meal planning is an awesome way to save on your grocery bill and save your sanity.  By planning out what you will make for dinner each night and by knowing you have the right ingredients on hand, dinner will be stress-free and you will be less inclined to order take-out.  I’ve even included an easy homemade pizza to boot!

One of the best ways to save money is to eat at home.  In my first meal-planning option I included one budget-friendly meal out, as a treat!  In this version, we will eat at home every night.

If you are only eating out once a month (if you use my first meal plan and then add this one), imagine how much money you will save! (Do the math: Average cost per dinner out = $12.17 per person at Red Robin x’s 4 = $48.68 x’s 4 (if you go out once a week four times a month) = $194.72. You will be saving almost $200 by eating in. (Source for the average cost per meal at a chain restaurant: Business Insider)

Before you go on…If you want to save even more money on food, check out my favorite cash-back apps. These apps help me earn money back on my groceries each week. All I have to do is submit my grocery receipt. Check them out below:

Ibotta is my favorite, but I also love Check Out 51 and Fetch Rewards. The best part is you can use all of them with the same grocery receipt and each offers a sign-up bonus. Check them out here:

Sing up for Ibotta here

Sign up for Fetch here

Sign up for Checkout  51 here

Your food bill doesn’t have to break your budget.  Cooking is easy, fun and budget-friendly.

So with you in mind, I devised another two-week round of meals! Listed under the meal planning is a grocery list with prices (mostly exact but a few are estimated) of where I usually shop, Target! You will notice our bi-weekly dinners will total under $75!! That is two weeks of dinner meals for under $75! Yes, you read that right!

Note: Add some bread, lunch meat, cereal or oats, and milk, and you will have an entire two weeks of meals for around $100.

Note: If you are really low on cash this month, check out my $40 meal plan for two weeks worth of dinners.


Other Budget Posts You Will Enjoy:

 

Grab your free Meal Plan and Menu Template

Click here to grab your free meal planning packet! Meal Planning Packet!

This post contains affiliate links. This means if you click a link and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you, so thank you. This site uses cookies for better user experience. For more information read our disclosure policy here.  We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

For more money-saving tips subscribe at the bottom of this post or follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Take my advice and only visit the store twice a month. Stock up on all of your grocery needs and you won’t be tempted to head back to the store, where the advertisers will be working their magic to test your impulses and lure you into a spending splurge.


More Budget-Friendly Food Posts:


Have you heard of Meal Plan Magic? They take the “guesswork” out of meal planning and make it easier for you to learn how to meal plan. If you don’t have time for meal planning, why not check them out?

Check out my absolute favorite crockpot you can use for meal planning. It has lasted me eight years and counting!

So without further adieu, let’s get cooking!!

Meal Planning Week One

Click here to print in PDF format: Meal Planning Round 2

Monday: Smothered Pork – This slow cooker recipe is so easy and yummy! Serve on top of rice. This will be updated in few days to include a link to the recipe. Check it out. Here is the recipe: Smother Pork  (updated 1/24)

Tuesday: Cheap and Yummy Bean Burritos – Use one can of Market Pantry refried beans. Next heat up the beans on the stovetop and add them to your wrap.  Then add shredded cheddar cheese and your favorite toppings! We like salsa and light sour cream. Optional: Make a rice packet and add it as a filling!

Wednesday: Grilled Chicken and Veggies – Thaw overnight and season up your chicken with salt and pepper and/or Italian dressing. Next pan-fry it on your stovetop for around 8 minutes on medium-high heat. (Always check your meat is cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit). I usually buy frozen vegetables and steam them, because they are cheaper than fresh and they still hold a lot of nutrients.

Thursday: Sloppy Joe’s– Use Ground Beef and Manwich Sloppy Joe Mix! Brown up your meat and add the mix! Serve on a bun with a side of veggies. Yummy!

Friday:  Freezer Friday – We like fish sticks (Gorton’s is a good option) or spinach ravioli and veggies but feel free to cook up anything you have meant to eat in the back of your freezer.

Saturday: Homemade Cheap and Yummy Pizza – Make a basic pizza dough (Here is one from The Food Network that I like. Also you can freeze the extra) and add pizza sauce and your favorite toppings. We like black olives and onions. Another easy option for pizza crust is the Market Pantry thin crust, which sells for only $1.49.

Sunday: Crock-Pot Chicken Tacos – This is such an easy meal. Just add 1/2 cup water, 1/2 onion, and three thawed chicken breast to your crock-pot. Add 1/2 a packet of taco seasoning and 1 cup of salsa. Next, cook on high for around four hours (depending on your crock-pot) and shred the chicken.  Then mix well and drain if it seems too runny. Lastly, serve on wraps with your favorite toppings.

Check out my absolute favorite crockpot, which has lasted me the past eight years, here!

Want to save even more on groceries and earn $10? Sign up for Ibotta and Checkout 51 and get cash back for your groceries. I use these EVERY time I shop!

Meal Planning Week Two

Monday: Leftovers – Use the leftover chicken from last night’s meal to make more yummy tacos or serve on tortilla chips with cheese for chicken nachos.

Tuesday: Pancakes and Eggs – Breakfast for dinner! Why not?  You will get your protein from the eggs and carbohydrates from the pancakes. Best of all, my kids will eat it! They usually refuse to eat and get up fifteen times, but that is beside the point!  With pancakes, they lick their plates clean.

Wednesday: Cheddar Turkey Burgers – Mix one package of ground turkey with 1 cup of cheddar cheese. Next season with salt and pepper and a few splashes of Worcestershire sauce. Lastly, cook your patties and serve them on a bun with veggies as a side dish.

Thursday: Mozzarella Grilled Cheese and Tomato Bisque – I use sliced mozzarella for the grilled cheese and a side of Campbell’s Tomato Bisque. The grilled cheese is great for dipping.

Friday: Freezer Friday – Pull something out that will expire soon! If you are extremely good at using everything in your freezer, try Market Pantry Frozen Ravioli!  They have a few varieties!

Saturday: Pulled Chicken Sandwiches and Veggies – Another simple crock-pot recipe! This recipe will be added soon and is a very simple way to make your pulled chicken in a slow cooker. Updated 1/26 Pulled Chicken Recipe

Sunday: BBQ Chicken Pizza – Make a basic pizza dough (should have some in the freezer if you made the recipe above) and add leftover chicken from last night, plus red onions and mozzarella cheese. Bake for around 20 minutes! YUM!

Need more meal planning ideas? Check out the Ultimate Healthy Meal Planning Bundle from my favorite bundle company here!

Meal planning - 2 weeks under $75
Meal planning – 2 weeks under $75 with printables

Grocery List for Your Budget-Friendly Meal Plan Under $75

To print the grocery list in PDF format, click here: Grocery List Meal Planning Round 2

On hand: salt, pepper, salad dressing (Italian), flour, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, barbecue sauce

Meat:

1 lb. Pack of Pork chops $4.99, 1 2.5 lb. package of Market Pantry Frozen Chicken $7.99, 1 lb.pack of Jennie-o Ground Turkey $4.99, 1 lb. Market Pantry 80/20 Ground Beef $2.99, 1 lb. pack of fresh chicken $4.99: $25.95 (If you are lucky, Target often has a sale of $5 off $20 meat purchase. Be on the lookout! You will need a coupon from the flyer. They offer this sale about once every two months)

Produce:

1 white onion $1, 1 red onion Total: $2

Pantry:

MP = Market Pantry brand (Target changed some of the brand name items to Good and Gather)

Market Pantry Cream of Mushroom Soup 10 oz $.99, MP white rice package 14 oz. $1.69, MP Chicken broth 14.5 oz. $.79, MP refried beans 16 oz $1.17, MP Wraps (8 10 Inch) $2.14, Pizza Sauce $1.50, MP Taco Seasoning $.69, MP Chunky Salsa 24 oz. $2.27, Simply Balanced Tortilla Chips $2.99, Bread $2, Campbell’s Tomato Bisque 11 oz. $1.59, Yeast pack of three $1, Manwich Sloppy Joe Sauce $1, Market Pantry Pancake Mix 32 oz. $1.99, Optional MP pizza crust $1.49 Total: $21.81

Dairy:

Sour Cream $2.59, MP Shredded Cheddar Cheese 2.49, 32 oz. MP Mozzarella Cheese $4.99, MP sliced mozzarella cheese $2.49, Eggs $1.99 Total: $14.55

Frozen:

1 Simply Balanced Frozen broccoli $1.66, 1 Frozen Simply Balanced mixed veggies $1.66, Gorton’s Fish Sticks $2.99, package of MP frozen ravioli 2.99  Total: $9.30

Grand Total: $73.61

How I save more on groceries and bring my price under $70:

But wait…I have a Target REDcard and I receive 5% off all of my purchases at the register. This brings my total down to $69.93

Want even more savings? Look up your items on the Target Cartwheel app. Target Brands such as Market Pantry and Good an Gather are always in the app. Furthermore, I never leave home without my Cartwheel app! To learn more check out my Target saving secrets here. Don’t forget you can stack Target coupons on top of the app savings!  Just check the Target website before you shop and print any relevant coupons.  They often have a $3/15 Market Pantry or Simply balanced brand coupon. This is where the real deal savings come in at Target.

You may also stack Target coupons with manufacturer coupons. Print coupons easily at coupons.com, one of my favorite coupon sites!

To make meal planning even easier, check out Meal Plan Magic. Meal Plan Magic teaches you how to meal plans and stay healthy by taking your individual needs into consideration. You can check it out here.

Budget-Friendly Two-Week Meal Planning Conclusion

I hope you enjoy your meals and the time you saved is spent doing something else you love without stressing about food!!  I’ll be spending my free time playing trains with my boys!  Leave me a comment and let me know if you received any extra savings! I would love to hear from you!

The question of the day: If you had an extra half an hour of free time today, what would you do with it?

Have a great weekend my friends! Until next time – Sarah

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Christmas Budget Brunch – Yummy & Frugal

Christmas Budget Brunch

Looking forward to Christmas brunch this year?  Me too!  I love the Holidays and food is a very important part of all the celebrating.  After watching the kids open gifts, a yummy brunch is a great way to feel full inside and out.  Prepare your brunch with love and the family will love it!

Are you on a budget this Christmas? Try my Christmas Budget Brunch and enjoy saving money and eating well with your family this year. #Christmas #Christmasmenu #Christmasrecipes
Christmas Brunch on a Budget! Enjoy!

Maybe you are hosting guests and would like to have something to offer them as they wake up on Christmas morning.

I’m thinking of memories of Dad making his infamous pancakes, sausage scent filling the house and that special syrup reserved only for Holidays, Mom would whip up.  #makingmehungry

Christmas brunch is a special time to sit as a family and remember what the Holidays are all about.  After spending money on gifts, decorations, and Christmas cards, it is usually the last thing on one’s mind…to buy more food for the morning.

If you enjoy living a frugal lifestyle or the Holidays are hitting your budget hard this year, this post will help you come up with a great brunch, that will break your belt buckle and not your bank!

Let’s try to keep our cost down to under $12 for our entire Christmas brunch. This brunch will easily feed six hungry mouths.  Here are some awesome food ideas that will wow and keep your loved ones, big and small, full all Christmas morning.

**This post contains affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase I will receive a small commission, so thank you so much!!!

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What is a Split-Meat Meal? Eating on a Budget – Spaghetti & Tacos

SPLIT MEAT MEALS – Eating on a Budget

 

 

Split Meat Meals- Spaghetti & Tacos
Split Meat meals – Spaghetti & Tacos

What is a split meal? Do you often cook dinners on a budget?  If so, my split-meat meal idea is perfect for you! Make your spaghetti and tacos this week, using only one package of meat!

Split meat meals are great for families trying to save money on food and stay healthy. You are using half the meat for both meals and filling yourself up with other items such as vegetables or bread.

I started my split meals when my husband was buying our ground turkey from Costco. The packages of meat were bigger, so I would make two meals out of one meat pack! My two go-to meals for splitting are spaghetti and tacos! (Although you could do Chili and add extra veggies)

So my split meal is just that! I split the meat and drum up two meals with one meat package and meal prep.

This works best for a family of four with younger kids. My kids are ages six and four and do not mind if their spaghetti sauce or tacos don’t have as much meat. Plus if you start this when they are young, then they are used to eating their meals with less meat as they grow.

Related:

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What Do I Do With All of This Leftover Turkey! Turkey Recipes

Leftover Turkey
Leftover Turkey

Are you cooking a turkey for Thanksgiving this year or hosting? You are bound to end up with leftover turkey. With recipes estimating over 1 pound per guest, there is always turkey left at the end of the Thanksgiving meal.

I have hosted Thanksgiving three times so far and I am sure I have more to come. Yet, I have to admit, I was super nervous cooking the turkey my first time. However, I later realized, cooking a turkey is super easy. You just need to prep your turkey and pay attention to the meat thermometer and timing. My first bird turned out juicy and succulent. My guests raved  I even sent home leftover bags with several of my guests. However, I still ended up with piles of turkey I was left eating for days after and the plain turkey was getting old after Black Friday.

So what is a girl to do? Find some amazing recipes to use your turkey up! I love saving money and since Thanksgiving day turkey isn’t cheap, I hate wasting any bit of it!

And I am a turkey lover! My husband… Not so much! So I am left eating the majority of our leftovers. However, we are about to convert you with some of our leftovers, with my two boys.

Need a few ideas so that yummy, juicy bird does not go to waste?  Here at I Heart Frugal we believe in using as much of the food as possible, in order to continue with our frugal living habits, which saves you money!!!

Left Over Turkey Recipes:

1. Turkey Sandwich –  Load up your favorite bread (I love multi-grain), add a little mayo, tomato, lettuce, and cheese (I like provolone with turkey)  and you’ve got lunch or dinner that is bound to be a winner!

Pro Tip: Taking leftovers for lunch is a HUGE money-saver!

2. Turkey Soup – Now that the weather is getting colder, everyone loves to warm up with a yummy bowl of soup. Use your bird to replace the meat in any chicken soup recipe or use the turkey bone to make your own broth and enjoy in any recipe that calls for broth!

3. Turkey Pot Pie-  Sick of the regular old chicken pot pie? Why not use turkey? Make a basic dough or Pillsbury biscuits, add some veggies and cream of chicken soup and bake them up! Homemade pot pie doesn’t have to be difficult! Here is an amazing pie crust recipe from All Recipes to try with your pot pie!

4. Cold Turkey Salad – Add your turkey to lettuce, dried cranberries, walnuts, blue or feta cheese! Top with a little raspberry vinaigrette dressing and you will have a dish even the kids will love! (We will have to skip the dressing for my oldest son. He likes everything plain!)

5. Hot Turkey Salad – Yum! This is a recipe my Great-Grandma used to make!

Quick Recipe:  Add 3 Cups diced turkey, 1 cup thinly sliced celery, 1 cup shredded cheese, 1/4 cup chopped black olives, 1 tablespoon chopped onion, 1 teaspoon salt, 2/3 cup Miracle Whip and stir!  Sprinkle with shredded cheese and top with crushed potato chips.

6. Give Away Leftovers – than the gift of giving during the holiday season.  Buy some freezer bags and send your guests home with some leftovers of their own!  They will leave happy and you will cut down on wasted food! A win, win!

Leftover Turkey Recipes Conclusion

Whatever it is you do with your Turkey, this year, I’m wishing you a joyful, peaceful Holiday Season with good food, good family and good friends and love in your hearts! Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Related Posts:

  1.  Yummy and Cheap Pulled Pork
  2. Easy, Budget-Friendly Tuna Noodle Casserole
  3. Budget-Friendly $75 Dinner Meal Plan

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