Trying to do weekly meal plans on a budget? These menu plans can help! They show what our family of 5 has been enjoying on our $200/mp. grocery budget. Lots of easy, delicious, inexpensive meals.
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When I posted my first Menu Plan, I kind of figured it would attract some interest because I know people are always intrigued with how frugal people eat and live. But I was totally amazed that it got over 10,400 visits in just two weeks time! I guess people really are intrigued!
Here’s my second menu plan showing you exactly what we ate the last two weeks. If you are new here, it’s probably helpful to know a couple of things first:
- Our family of five consists of two adults with fairly big appetites, a 6-year-old boy, a 3 year-old girl and a 13 month-old girl.
- I buy lots of fruits and veggies in bulk from local farmers/orchards in the summer and then freeze or can them. This is not only much cheaper it is also healthier too. But that is why if you look at my Weekly Spending Summaries you won’t always see lots of produce.
- I have a stockpile- my cupboards are full from previous shopping and here’s why. When I can get pasta for free with coupons, I buy as much as I have coupons for. If I’m able to get flour for $0.50/bag like I did last fall, I’ll buy half a dozen and put them in the freezer to use as needed. I do this as much as my budget allows, on as many items as I can and as a result save lots of money. Then when I go to plan menus, I simply plan our meals around what I already have in my cupboards and freezer, as much as possible. Obviously I still might have to buy a few things at regular price here and there, but by stocking up when the price is at rock bottom I save a lot.
- I cook almost totally from scratch. That means when I make a cake, I rarely use a cake mix. (Why should I when this yummy chocolate cake takes all of 5 minutes to mix up?) I make my own bread totally from scratch. I almost never use pre-packaged sauces. I make my own cream soups and pie crusts and lots and lots of other things. Making your own food is almost always less expensive and healthier too!
- We rarely snack. By eating “heavy” food like granola at breakfast we don’t get hungry until lunch time. And the same goes for the afternoon. Our lunches are big enough that we usually are fine until dinner time. When we do need a snack, I try to keep it mostly healthy by offering fruit, nuts or maybe No Bake Energy Bites. We don’t always do it perfectly though, and sometimes end up having chips or cookies instead.
- Our breakfasts consist of Easy Homemade Granola or Baked Oatmeal, the occasional bought cereal that I was able to get for $0.50/box and sometimes some fruit too. I know that might seem awfully boring to some of you, but we actually all really enjoy it and prefer it over other breakfast food. I also have a homemade iced coffee, homemade frappe or some other fun beverage every morning. It’s just one of the little things that I do to make my morning routine a bit easier and more fun!
Below you will find our lunches and dinners. (If we ate something other than our usual breakfast, I’ll note that too.) Monday through Friday, 3 days a week the lunches are just for the two youngest and I, the other 2 days my husband joins us. Our son gets lunch at school and 3 days a week my husband takes a packed lunch with him to work. His lunch typically consists of sandwiches, fruit, homemade yogurt and sometimes random leftovers too.
Ideas for Weekly Meal Plans on a Budget
- Pre-made Ham Loaf; Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes & Carrots tossed in browned butter and seasoned bread crumbs; Green Beans; Homemade Applesauce; Frosted Chocolate Chip Cheesecake
– I get the Ham Loaf in 10+lb. portions from a local grocery store when it goes on sale. All that I need to do to it, is add a glaze. It makes a super easy and delicious Sunday lunch since it can bake while we are at church.
- Toasted Tuna Salad and Cheese Sandwiches; Easy Fruit Smoothies (blueberry/peach with some spinach tossed in :))
- Spent the day with my mom-in-law and sisters-in-law- took a mixture of frozen fruit that I preserved
- Salsa Chicken Soup; Spinach/Lettuce Salad with Mexican Dressing; Homemade Doughnuts (made with my sisters-in-laws!)
- Leftover Soups; Frozen Peaches (I preserved); Easy Homemade Yogurt
- Leftover Ham Loaf; Leftover Sweet Potato/Potatoes/Carrots; Leftover Veggies; Homemade Applesauce; Homemade Doughnuts
- Various Leftovers; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Oranges
- Sour Cream Chicken Quiche; Green Beans; Homemade Applesauce; Homemade Doughnuts
- Eggs; Toast; Homemade Grape Juice
– It was a snowy day and our son didn’t have school and my husband didn’t go to work, so he decided to make breakfast for us!
- Various Leftovers; Home Canned Peaches; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Chocolate Chip Baked Oatmeal
- Haystacks (taco meat and black beans/corn chips/lettuce/salsa/cheese/salad dressing); Homemade Applesauce; Snow Cream (used a recipe similar to this)
– We had 10 inches of snow and so I decided to introduce the kids to snow cream. Of course they loved it! Actually we all did, even my skeptical husband!
- Roast Beef & Cheese Sandwiches made with Homemade Bread; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Home Canned Peaches; Frozen Blueberries; Easy 3 Ingredient Healthy Fudge
- Chicken with Mustard Cream Sauce; Baked Potatoes & Sweet Potatoes (love using this method); Green Beans; Homemade Applesauce
– The chicken recipe was SO good! I didn’t have any Dijon mustard so I used a mixture of Spicy Brown Mustard and Honey Mustard until I thought it tasted right. Will definitely be making again!
- Various Leftovers; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Home Canned Peaches; Frozen Blueberries
- Leftover Sour Cream Chicken Quiche; Peas; Homemade Applesauce; Homemade Doughnuts
- At my in-law’s all day- took Texas Sheet Cake and Frozen Strawberries (I preserved)
- Various Leftovers; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Oranges
- Homemade Cream of Tomato Soup; Garlic & Herb Grilled Cheese Sandwiches (I like to sprinkle the cheese with garlic powder and basil/Italian Seasoning); Homemade Applesauce; Pickles (I preserved); Oreos & Milk
- Leftover Cream of Tomato Soup; Cheese; Home Canned Peaches; Easy Homemade Yogurt
- Stromboli; Lettuce Salad with eggs/cheese/carrots/mushrooms; Homemade Applesauce; Soda; Cheesecake & Rice Pudding
– A good friend of ours wanted to bring us supper and eat with us, so he provided the Stromboli, soda and desserts. So nice of him!
- Various Leftover; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Mandarin Oranges
- Salmon Soup (kind of like oyster soup but with canned salmon); Classic French Bread; Lettuce/Spinach Salad with Mexican Dressing; Homemade Applesauce; Leftover Cheesecake
- Various Leftovers; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Mandarin Oranges
- Chicken Fried Rice; Homemade Applesauce; Ice Cream
- Leftover Stromboli; Easy Homemade Yogurt; Home Canned Peaches; Grapefruit
- Vegetable Soup (I canned); Lettuce Salad with Mexican Dressing; Cheese; Homemade Applesauce
- We were away all day and didn’t eat at home.
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