Family’s Gotta Eat, Right?

So, I’m trying the meal planning thing again!  Well, I never stopped planning the meals, I just stopped posting.  But, as my family starts this year off with a pretty budget in mind, it reminds me that planning my menus, then using that plan to make my grocery list, is something that greatly helps me with keeping our grocery budget of $100 in line.  That $100 needs to cover not only our dinners, but allow for staples such as milk, bread, eggs, and the other things that we eat on a weekly basis, for breakfast, lunch,  and dinner.  Oh, and snacks, and occasionally dessert!  And we don’t tend to eat a lot of crappy, processed foods, so I have to make that $100 really work!  At some point in the near future, I’ll actually be vlogging about the ways that I stretch everything out, and eventually these meal plans will include a price breakdown!  As a general rule though, none of these meals cost more than $10, and they easily feed a family of four (Byron and I eat the leftovers, if there are any, for lunch the next day!).

When I grocery shop, I shop for the week, and I DO NOT GO BACK TO THE STORE, unless we are out of something really, really important, like milk or bread, but that rarely happens.  We do go out to eat sometimes, and if we do, that planned meal gets recycled back into week, or pushed back to the next week.  But, we also budget for eating out! $25/bi-weekly, or $50/month.  With just the two of us (Izzy shares from our plates, we don’t order separately for her, because, well, she’s 3 years old.  She is so fickle with her food choices that we can’t depend on her to actually eat what she ordered.  Unless it’s bacon.  SHE WILL EAT THE BACON.) , this is plenty for the places we like to go.  We can easily eat at Friday’s, Ruby Tuesday, or order Chinese, or go to our favorite little Mexican place and eat, and still have money left to grab quick burgers or something another day if we need to.  Part of this is because when restaurants have those free member clubs, I join them!  Fridays, Chili’s, Papa Johns, Ruby Tuesday, and a few others all have these things, and they send me coupons all the time!  Friday’s actually has a rewards program that we LOVE, because we really like Fridays, so we eat there often.

But, I’m getting off track!  Here is this week’s menu!


All of these will be home-made, from scratch!  The only things coming from a box or jar will be the staple items, such as the cornbread mix, the chips and salsa for the taco salads, pasta noodles, rice, and the salad dressing!  I’ll try to start building kind of a recipe database, and come back and do pictures for everything.  Some of these meals are meals that we eat often, just because they are so simple, like the taco salads!

My menu plans go from Thursday to Wednesday because I go grocery shopping on Thursdays.  Why?  I’m honestly not sure, but I don’t like going on Fridays, and I have another commitment on Mondays, so Thursday just…works!

Anyway, this post is getting long enough, so I’ll leave it at this.

What is your family eating this week?

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Roses Daughter
8 years ago

ive started making menu plans again this year. It was one of my new years “resolutions”. So far so good!

8 years ago

That is the same budget for my family as well. $100 and he really have to make it work. I also shop weekly and do not go back to the store. That $100 includes lunch and dinner for the week.

8 years ago

I need to give menu planning a try and then stick to the menu. I used to do it before we had kids. Not sure why I stopped. Looks like a great menu. Can you post the recipe for the Mexican chicken?

8 years ago

How do you only spend 100 a week. I use to spend 175 a week for 4 people and managed to get it down to 125 a week but barely. I don’t cook on Fridays and Saturdays at all it’s fend for yourself which could be pb&J or grilled cheese or a sandwich. I buy from 3 stores depending on whats on sale. I don’t cook if I am busy that day we eat out or do something with a coupon because not cooking frees me up so much in the evening.

8 years ago

Right on! I’m working on meal planning as well. It takes a lot of thought and coordination, but I’m determined to give it a try and find a stride once I really get going. I have no time for wasting money this year! The site $5 Dinners has helped me out a lot. I look forward to more of your posts for new meal ideas!

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