In an effort to reduce the grocery budget, while also eating healthy, I wanted to make a meal plan for next week that incorporates ingredients I currently have on hand (so I can start emptying out my darn freezer) and uses excess ingredients that normally would get thrown away. I usually shop on Saturdays, and therefore make my plans from Sunday-Saturday.
It’s a work in progress, but here are the bare bones of it.
Breakfast: Tom’s parents raise chickens, and whenever we go over there, we always come back with a few dozen eggs. Right now, we have roughly 3 dozen that needed to be eaten up. I’m thinking about making a large frittata to make for the week for my breakfast. The Cookie Rookie has a BLT one that looks divine. The recipe makes roughly 4 servings and requires few ingredients. Tom’s not crazy about breakfast, and usually sticks with rye toast or frozen waffles, so this will be plenty for me (his loss).
Lunch: I’ve stuck to eating salads at lunch for a little while now, especially since produce is starting to come back in season. They’re simple to make, easy to customize and make sure I get my veggies in each day! I’ve also discovered (thanks to a tip from my dad) a little produce store called Garden of Eden, which has some really great stuff at even better prices. I made a simple salad with cranberries, goat cheese, walnuts and plenty of veggies this week. Since I have many of the ingredients and it’s pretty delicious, I’ll keep it around next week too.
Dinners: If you’ve read any of my meal prep plans before, you know that I usually eat the same thing for breakfast and lunch almost every day (I like taking Friday off). Dinners are where I like to mix it up. Typically I like to make 1-2 meals on a Sunday that can last us for the week, and then have quick meals planned for work nights. This week, I’ll make Tom’s favorite Mississippi Pot Roast, since the store has chuck roasts on sale, on Sunday. I’ll also throw in some chicken to cook in the crock pot on Monday night, so we’ll have it ready to go Tuesday night for dinner and maybe to top the BLTs on Thursday. I’m planning to make:
- Sunday: Mississippi Pot Roast with steamed veggies
- (Meatless) Monday: Whole wheat pasta with pesto
- Tuesday: Shredded Chicken Quesadillas with Guac, lettuce, tomato
- Wednesday: Leftovers
- Thursday: BLTs and fries
- Friday: Frozen pizza
- Saturday: Time to enjoy a night out!
Everything is simple this week. One of the problems with cooking for two people is that often you’re left with leftover ingredients when a recipe doesn’t call for the full amount, like this week with the bacon. Since I’m trying to cut back on my budget, I tried to streamline the ingredients to limit wasted food and plan to make a little extra each night for leftovers. Since I went to Costco and bought a lot of food — frozen chicken, jar of pesto, pasta — I based a lot off of what I have on hand, to limit purchases.
That’s it! I didn’t include recipes really, since everything is pretty self-explanatory, but feel free to let me know if you want to know something specific! I’ll let you know how grocery shopping goes next week and if I end up saving. Hopefully this will be a success and become a weekly feature from here on out.