Monday, September 24, 2012

4 Under $40 September 23, 2012

If you remember from last week's post my meal plans are based on what the Ingles supermarkets have listed in their sale paper. I am an Ingles' shopper out of convenience. Other than the Walmart, a Piggly Wiggly (lacking in produce) and a discount grocery our rural community is not a shopping mecca for foodies. Thus, out of necessity, Ingles is our grocery of choice. So, here's my plan for the week of September 23, 2012. Their prices are not necessarily always lower than a store like Walmart, but if you watch the sale papers you can do pretty well sans coupons.


Chicken Pasta Salad

If you picked up extra pasta last week, you are going to do even better, but don't despair because Barilla pasta is still on sale at 4/$5. I prefer the tri-color rotini for this dish, but any pasta will do, just cook according to package directions, drain and put into large bowl. Cook your boneless, skinless chicken breast ($1.98 lb) as preferred and chop into bite sized pieces and add it to the bowl. (If you buy extra, boil it, chop it and freeze a couple of breasts and broth for next week you have the start of chicken noodle soup.) Grab a bag of Fresh Express (2/$4) baby spinach and add it to the pasta. Now you can have fun and add whatever you desire. If you like it more savory add Italian dressing (Kraft 8 oz dressings $1.97 ea), black olives and artichoke hearts. Prefer a sweeter salad? Try chopped apples ($2.98/3 lb), grapes ($2.48 lb), dried cranberries and a sweeter dressing. Depending on what you already have on-hand you are looking at a family meal for under $6.



Taco Soup

Check out yesterday's post for this easy, delicious Taco Soup recipe. If you don't keep many canned goods around tonight's meal could be the most expensive of the week. But, if you use what you have then you could come away with a meal for merely pennies. The total here is coming from purchasing everything at the store; ground beef and all canned goods. Notice on the grocery list that I just added the Luck's Chili Beans that were on sale and the LL Red Kidney Beans. Either will work and chose the one you'd rather have. I'll also just use a can of RoTel or another can of tomatoes rather than tomato sauce. Getting creative is the BEST part about soup making! Instead of chips (which are becoming outrageously expensive) think about using the tortillas that you got on sale last week or pick some up this week (still on sale) and don't miss the Old El Paso bonus. The same goes for the canned DelMonte veggies. Total if you purchase everything new this week $15.



Dinner at church!



Cube Steak (Country Fried Steak)

Cube steak (country fried steak) is the biggie this week. (Recipe here.) Trust me; you are going to want to try this at least once. It is totally worth the effort, I give you my word! Cube steak ($2.98 lb) and new (red) potatoes ($1.98/5 lbs) are the heart of this meal. Even better - you could use some of the 10 lbs worth of potatoes you bought last week and do them mashed. You can go for a side salad and use the remaining lettuce (Fresh Express 2/$4) or try a new veggie. I love asparagus ($2.98 lb) and it happens to be on sale this week too. I usually give it a quick steam in a sauce pan and salt it when finished, but they're nice roasted in the oven too. Bakery French bread is BOGO ($1.88/2) or, if you prefer, Pilsbury Crescent rolls (2/$5). Meal total here is anywhere from $8 - $12.



Pintos and Cornbread

Pintos and cornbread is probably the cheapest, most filling dinner we eat around here. This week you can get dried beans for $1 lb (Note: the sale is on 2 lb bags). I recommend you stock-up. Does anyone need a recipe for pintos? Let me know and I'll post that as well. If you have to buy cornmeal ($2.88/5 lb) then you're per-meal price will rise above $1, but if not your entire family will eat for $1 today! (Also, if you season your beans with side meat or bacon your price will go up. There are ways to get great flavor without the pork!)



If you purchase every single ingredient listed for this week's meals, then your total is going to be nearly $70. However, you will get some pantry stockers and freezer meat for this price. I chose these meals because I have many of these items already in my pantry (some from last week's sale) that I won't have to purchase again. In fact, I'm looking at these meals costing me under $20! Figure out how exactly this works for you and let me know.




Grocery List





Boneless/Skinless Breast


2-3 lb


Ground Beef


3 lb


Cube Steak


2 lb




Gala Apples (bag)

$2.98/3 lb

3 lb






Fresh Express Bag Salad

$2 ea



Red Potatoes

$1.98/5 lb

5 lb




1 lb


Bakery French Bread






Barilla Pasta


1 or 2


White Lily Buttermilk Cornmeal

$2.88/5 lb



Taco Seasoning




LL Pinto Beans

$1/lb (2lb bags)



LL Cream of . . . Soup


1 or 2


Ranch Drsg Packet




Kraft 8oz Salad Drsg

$1.97 ea

1 or 2


DelMonte Can Veggies

$0.80 WYB 10



Luck's Beans (Chili Beans)

$0.60 ea



LL Kidney Beans




LL Evaporated Milk (sm)


1 or 2






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