I went to Winco this afternoon. Not gonna lie… so very glad my Mom wanted to go shopping, too. This was my first time back since September’s Stalking incident. With my mom and iPhone, today was a much better shopping experience.
I kept to my January Meal Plan. If it wasn’t on the list, it wasn’t in the cart. This was a little tricky, because I only wrote “lunch/bento” on the Grocery List. As you can translate, I wasn’t sure until I arrived at the store exactly what our January lunches would consist of.
The first item I picked up was the Eggplant for my Slow Cooker Ratatouille. It was so big yet inexpensive, I instantly opted to double my meal. I can easily cook twice as much and freeze half of it for later in the month, which means a second Frittata as well. Eggplant, zucchini, mushrooms, onions, green pepper, tomatoes and fresh garlic.
I had budgeted $10 for one batch; yet will be able to make two for $8.90. Already I saved $3.10, and have extra garlic, onion, and 1/2 green pepper.
For the Ratatouille Pizza, I bought 4-Cheese Spaghetti Sauce and 4-Cheese blend of shredded cheese. While I budgeted $7 for these two items, it cost only $2.89. Bam! $4.11 saved here, folks! And there will be leftover sauce and cheese as well.
Now I’ve got almost all the ingredients for my Baked Frittata (vegetables, cheese). To make sure I had enough, I bought fresh eggs and milk. I planned on $6. I spent $5.75, saving a quarter. Of course, I won’t use all the eggs and milk for Frittata, so a little here goes a long way there!
Then I choose an assortment of beans and vegetables for my Slow Cooker Turkey Chili. I found this great Jennie-O Taco Seasoned Ground Turkey. Can you imagine the flavor that’s going to add?
Even with the more expensive ground turkey, I saved $1.03 off my proposed $8.
For my Potato Chip Casserole, I didn’t have the Cream soups in my pantry, so I needed to buy those. But the canned chicken was half the expected price, which led me to buy enough for two casseroles. I planned on $5, but spent $9.32 over, for a total of $14.32. For twice the food, $4.66 extra per casserole isn’t bad.
I planned to spend just $4 for my Texas Hash, but needed to get a can of tomatoes in addition to the ground beef. The total of $4.92 was less than a dollar more than expected.
Because the tomatoes also have diced green pepper mixed in, that extra 1/2 green pepper from the Ratatouille will be more than enough.
The breakfast budget was $6.02 less than planned. The oatmeal is less expensive, and I didn’t get any yogurt. For $6.98, these three boxes will give us quite a nutritional start to our days!
We still have a few oatmeal packets and Malt-o-Meal at home. These additions, with the extra eggs, should be all the breakfast we need for the month.
Now we come to the lunch selections.
Since Dot’s on winter break, I wanted to give her a variety. She loves the frozen burritos and Dinty Moore Stews, so those were easy choices. Basic peanut butter sandwiches will be complimented with the variety of jams, jellies and preserves already in our pantry.
I love the healthy choices of fresh vegetables, spinach wraps, and yogurt sticks. For those cold days, a cup of soup. And for that little extra touch, a variety of Jell-O.
My $50 lunch budget came to $32.41… a savings of $17.59.
The best part? Treating myself to my favorite fast meal, and another pantry staple.
Let’s recap, shall we? I planned 12 dinners, 30 breakfasts, and around 20 lunches for $103. I ended up with over 25 dinners (double the Ratatouille and Potato Chip Casserole, plus extra leftovers), 30+ breakfasts, and at least 20 lunches for $91.78.
Oh, and I saved $0.24 for using my four recyclable, reusable grocery totes… making the grand total $91.54.
Now that’s some tasty savings, dontcha think?
And Frankly, My Dear… that’s all she wrote!
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Awesome! Planning ahead and shopping that way will prevent the unnecessary purchases..I know when I shop armed with a list I do much better. One of my meal saving tips is FREEZING. I make large pots of spaghetti sauces and freeze them flat in my freezer and I don’t need jars and can make tons of meals. I then freeze stuff in small portions (some for lunch and some for dinner….) chills, crockpot stuff and that way I can alternate eating them and never get “bored”.
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I am in awe! Planning a week’s worth of meals has been on my resolution list for awhile. You make me think I could actually do it.
Looks like a great plan! Very inspiring!
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That’s a full table!