Planning Meals to Save Time and Money

by Matt B

We have been eating fast food and restaurant food WAY too much lately. It is taking a toll on our money almost as much as our health. I do not like cooking at all, and with Sarah in school and working, I hate to ask her to make anything when she has hardly any time to unwind. Because of my distaste for culinary arts, and her running herself ragged, we are eating crap.

It’s about time I take some action to prevent extreme obesity and a trip to the poorhouse. I have decided to plan a week’s worth of meals to see if I can successfully prepare food for us while saving money. This is going to be a huge trial run, as I am trying to do two things I can’t stand to do all in one project…that being cooking and shopping. Wish me luck!

Monday-Taco Night

Simple and straight forward seems like a good way to start the week. Besides, I love me some Tacos!

Total estimated cost for 2 servings: $8.21

Tuesday-Steak Salad100_1540

This recipe is available at the Mayo Clinic website and it is one of my favorite meals ever. Try it.

Total estimated cost for 2 servings: $9.59

Wednesday-Chicken & Tots w/Salad

As you can see, it is mid-week and I did not exactly challenge myself when it comes to preparation. Gimmie a break! I’m just a beginner.

Total estimated cost for 2 servings: $8.53

Thursday-Big Bad Burger Night

I can’t go a whole week without rockin’ the grill!

Total estimated cost for 2 servings: $8.03

Friday-Stir Fry 100_1542

Total estimated cost for 2 servings: $11.24

Although the cost of the stir fry was slightly higher than other meals, it was totally worth it. Sarah and I like completely different things in our stir fry, so I made two separate batches for us, which did add slightly to the overall cost of the meal.


Total estimated cost for 2 servings: $2.52 (wicked cheap!)

I decided that for the weekend, we should plan to eat out once, so depending on which night that is, we have only one dinner planned for home on the weekend. We actually did not follow the meal plan day for day, but even though a few meals got switched to different nights based upon our mood and laziness, the plan was a success. We got take out from a local pizza place on Friday night for a cost of about $13. Not too bad. Now if I can make the meal plan a regular staple in the food budget, we should be saving over $100 a month on food!

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August 8, 2009 at 9:52 am


Leigh August 6, 2009 at 12:31 pm

Great plan! I’m totally a believer in home cooking to save money. If you are just cooking for two, take a look at some of the recipes I’ve posted at – I won’t link here but I’m the Memphis Budget Meals Examiner. There’s a great chicken and rice recipe and today I did a strawberry spinach salad. Hope this help.

Sean August 8, 2009 at 2:15 am

I really liked this post, food can be such a black-hole for money!

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