I received a gift card for Christmas. I’m so very excited. Some people think gift cards are impersonal. I think gift cards are Potential. I plan to use this one for my January grocery budget.

The Unemployment Cookbook by Molly Jo Realy

I’m on a mission to save money and still feed my family well. I’m taking a page from my Cookbook, and starting with the recipe that started it all: Slow Cooker Ratatouille.

For just around $10, I’ll get the vegetables I need. I always keep olive oil and seasonings in the pantry.

Jan. 1: The Ratatouille will feed myself and Dot for two dinners.

Jan. 3: Drain the liquids and put half of the remaining seasoned vegetables on top a pizza crust. I always keep a frozen crust, so I’ll only need sauce and shredded cheese, about $7. This will feed us two dinners.

Jan. 5: Add the rest of the Ratatouille to my Baked Frittata. I usually keep eggs and milk in the house, but when I need to buy them, it costs close to $6 for both. I’ll already have shredded cheese from the pizza. The Frittata will feed us brunch and dinner for Saturday, and breakfast leftovers on Sunday.



Jan. 6: My Slow Cooker Turkey Chili. I’ll need to buy just one pound of ground turkey, two cans of beans, and three cans of vegetables, near $8. I keep spices and onions in my pantry. This will feed us for three dinners, and I can take a serving for lunch.

Jan. 9: Potato Chip Casserole. I’ll need to buy the chips and chicken, approximately $5. I always keep milk and cream soups in my fridge and pantry. This goes fast, usually allowing for just one dinner and lunch leftovers.

Jan. 10: Texas Hash. I have all the ingredients except ground beef, average $4.I usually also need a green pepper. But I’ll have an extra pepper from the Ratatouille ingredients. I’ll use my FoodSaver to keep it fresh until I need it. Texas Hash will feed us at least three dinners.

And there I’ve scheduled 12 days of dinners for less than $40.00. Feeding two, sometimes three, adults. That’s less than $1.50 per person per meal.

For breakfasts, one box of Malt-o-Meal ($4), two boxes of instant oatmeal ($2 each), and a few yogurts (10 at $0.50 each). $13 total for a month of breakfasts.

I’m going to try new Bento lunch ideas (send some thoughts my way, Rachel!). Dot is on winter break for the month, so I’ll have some sandwich fixin’s for her, too. Each Bento averages $2. Lunches for the month should run us close to $50.

And that’s my Mojo Meal Plan for the first part of January, and then some. I don’t know about you, but I’m hungry!

And Frankly, My Dear… that’s all she wrote!

Today I'm Going to Read
TGIF: December 28, 2012
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