Monday, May 3, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

I came across I'm an Organizing Junkie's Menu Plan Monday about 6 months ago. When I was working and before C we would eat out at least 3 times a week. I look back now and I think "Oh my gosh! Think about how much money we wasted eating out!!" If you add that up, let's say 3 times a week at $25 a meal. That's $75 a week for 52 weeks... that's $3900!! Think about what you could do with an extra almost $4000. Crazy.

So, when we went down to one income we needed that extra money. I started looking for ways to save and one of the first things to go was eating out, insert sad face here. I started first by using Hamburger Helper meals and premade foods and realized that wasn't saving much money either. I had to come up with a food budget and stick with it. I had to find a way to make meals that are good too. I started searching recipes and blogs for ideas. Generally, I like to cook and I'm pretty good at it. I just hate to make things that take forever.

Then I stumbled across I'm an Organizing Junkie. She has great reasons for menu planning and it works, not only to save money but, to save time in the kitchen. Check out her 13 Reasons to Menu Plan. I started menu planning immediately after I came across this. I would plan out my meals a month in advance, make my list, cut my coupons and go shopping. I managed to keep my grocery budget at $250 a month. It was awesome but, I got burnt out. So, I started doing it in 2 week increments instead of 1 month. This helped a lot. I stuck to my budget and I have the freedom to move the meals around in the 2 week period if I need to.

Each Monday, I'll start posting my menus for the week and I'll start linking the related recipes.

Monday: Pork Chop Surprise
Tuesday: Chicken Breasts and Veggie Pasta
Wednesday: Chicken Enchilada Casserole
Thursday: Spaghetti Casserole
Friday: Leftovers
Saturday: Homemade Pizza and Breadsticks
Sunday: Leftovers

For more information and recipe ideas head over to I'm and Organizing Junkie to check Laura out!


  1. $250 a month? That's impressive. I was proud of my $150 a week. I'm going to have to check these places out. Thanks for sharing.

    Thanks for swinging by and making my SITS day so wonderful. Your time and words mean the world to me.

    Lots of yummy love,
    Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner

  2. Visiting from the mom your blog it is so bright and colorful!

    The spaghetti casserole sounds yummy!

    I am like you and try and plan out our meals as well and am pretty successful with grocery shopping as well. I think we spend around $300 a month. I always check for sales and always have mom always did that as well...guess it stuck!

  3. I need to get my budget down to where yours is. Where do you clip your coupons from? I've tried but it never seemed to make a difference for me. I should try again.

  4. Funky Mama Bird...What I usually do is check what is on sale at my local grocery stores, they send the ads every Tuesday in the mail. Then I check what I have in my pantry and make my meal plan. I try to stockpile what is on sale. After I make the plan I look for coupons online. I do have a hard time finding good coupons but, some times I find some good ones. I actually do a LOT of cooking from scratch instead of premade stuff which saves a ton. I'll do a post on how I cook soon, maybe that will help :-)