Summer Menu Plan
Along with higher temps, we’re also going to need a higher degree of organization, which means it’s time for a summer menu plan. I’ve got to plan for breakfast and lunch for four, as well as dinners. Time to roll up my sleeves and get some meal planning knocked out. By using what I’ve already got, and supplementing with just a few additional fresh items, I can clean out the pantry and keep my budget in check.
Last month, I started using You Need A Budget to track my spending. And the numbers were eye opening. I was spending nearly as much on eating out as I was on groceries! I knew I had been slacking, but that was more than a little bit ridiculous, and totally not in line with my plans for my money. So, to change that, I have slashed both categories. Seeing that number sliiiiiide down towards $0 will hopefully make me a little more mindful of the convenience factor of eating out.
I’ve also done the summer kid swap around here, so you’ll see more meat in my plans than usual. After clearing out the freezer, I have decided that I am done buying meat for a while!
Monday: New Orleans style Red Beans, rice, and cornbread. I’ll be using the oven for the cornbread, but slow cooker and rice cooker for the rest. This will make tasty leftovers, as well. The last time I was in Beaumont, I bought a 20 lb bag of rice for $7. That will last us a long time, and it was significantly cheaper than I get around Houston. Beans are usually under $1/lb, and I am using a ham bone from the freezer for flavor. I will also add a little diced sausage as well. Total cost = $5
Tuesday: It’s Taco Tuesday! I had ground beef in the freezer, so I’ll add fresh flour tortillas, veggies, free Mexican rice, and free Cocina Latina beans to keep this dinner in line. Total cost = $5
Wednesday: Pulled chicken sandwiches. I found 4 individually frozen chicken breasts that will need a little extra loving. I’ll cook them in my pressure cooker, then mix with cheap barbeque sauce from my stockpile. Served on a hamburger bun with a side salad, this meal will be completely affordable. Total cost = $3
Thursday: Leftover night. After cooking for 3 nights, we will have a fridge full of food since I don’t know how to cook for less than an army.
Friday: Pizza night. This cost doesn’t come from my regular grocery budget, but my dining out category.
Saturday: Fend for yourself. It’s a great time to eat up some of those odds and ends that migrate into the freezer. Like why did I find 4 half bags of french fries? I don’t know, but it’s time to knock them out! Total cost = $0
Sunday: Dinner out. Hoping we don’t get rained out again!
Additional Grocery list for the week:
Hamburger buns – $1 at Kroger
Lettuce – $1 at Sprouts (used for tacos and side salad)
Sausage – $2 at HEB (marked down)
Flour Tortillas – $2.50 at HEB
1 tomato – $.50 at HEB