Sunday, April 22, 2018

Meal Planning With an Odd Pantry

If I want to keep my annual grocery and household budget low, I'll need to get creative the rest of April after DH's rogue and weird shop. Friday night we finally ate the ring sausage with leftover baked beans, and one of the pasta side dishes he bought. Yesterday DH was gone with his siblings, DD2 had a late lunch so just wanted popcorn and fruit last night. I cobbled together a meal of leftover veggies and salad stuff, cottage cheese, and had some fruit and popcorn with DD2. I made banana muffins  this morning and after church, we're planning to stop for coffee and something before aTarget run. Dinner will be at the show choir banquet, a pasta buffet with salald and bread, plus cupcakes. I have a light schedule, but DD2 has a track meet Tuesday, so I'll want something easy to warm up for her and DH when he gets home. I'm trying to stretch the menu to Thursday when I can stop on my way home. I'll have to do a major finger wag at DH and keep him out of the store on his day off, but hopefully the weather will be nice and he will be outside all day. Friday we have a birthday dnner  for my nephew, so really only need to cook supper four nights this week. Here are my options. 


  • Pulled pork (from last weeks boneless ribs), potatoe wedges, green beans
  • Frozen pizza-probably Tuesday night
  • Tuna noodle hotdish with steamed broccoli
  • Veggie stir fry with chicken fried rice, with egg
  • Croque Monsieur Sandwiches and soup (I want to start getting into the spirit of our trip)
  • Ham (freezer leftovers from Easter) pineapple, rice side dish

If I can keep to what's in the house, even with needing a substantial number of household items and dog food, I know without someone trying to help, I can stay under $400. I might possibly have room for  stock-up items if there truly are any great deals out there. Lately, that has not been my experience and I just end up shopping for lowest prices at the time I need something or using store brands. What's on your menu this week? What might you swap out? Anyone else still eating down Easter ham?

14 comments:

  1. Family cooperation is very important when trying to achieve goals such as low budget and weightloss. It depends on your priorities. If weightloss is your priority then, family can either join you in your efforts, or decide to prepare their own food. Pork, pizza, sausage sounds good for a family meal, but not so good for a family member who has decided to shed off a few pounds.
    Anyway, budget matters are, from my humble experience, somehow, easier to handle than weight issues.

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    1. You are so right-I do need to make some shifting of family meals, though my family would not care too much if we ate lighter. I try and compensate by starting my plate with the vegetables and fruits, and take care at lunch to try and reduce calore intake.

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  2. No ham left here. We were done with it by the end of the week, as ham salad is a favorite here. Personally, I can eat ham once a year and say I've had enough ham for a while, but I do love a good ham salad.
    I can usually figure out about when certain things will become good "stock up" prices," and try to buy enough to hold me off until the next loss leader price event. Lately, though, I have been in use it up mode, not stock up mode.

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    1. I don't mind that we have ham left really-it was a good one, and both for cooking with and as a meat on it's own. I could make a pasta salad for some lunches-nice idea. I think I still have the ham bone for soup too.

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  3. We are still eating down Christmas ham! We actually had ham sandwiches for Easter, since it was just TheHub, Mom and me eating, and we used thawed frozen Christmas ham for Easter. I think I am down to the last 2 packages of frozen ham. I should have a Croque night this week too!

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    1. That was smart. I actually am one more for the sides anyway than the meat at holidays so if the meat will work for two holidays, more power t your budget.

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  4. sounds like you will be eating well this week!! I just made ham and split pea soup the other day with our Easter ham, the end!

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    1. I remembered when responding to Meg that I still have the ham bone too-loaded with meat still. We'll still get cool days even if spring perhaps has finally come.

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  5. I love tuna casserole ! I keep looking for the 'best one'.

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    1. The hint I learned a couple decades ago from the Tightwad Gazette books is to ad 1/2 cup of mayo to the suace. I don't know what it does, but suddenly what used to be a blah dish is now a family favorite. It was a seafood casserole recipe-she said it made too much sauce so added more pasta, but I keep the sauce to pasta ratio high and it stays super creamy.

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  6. Our menu this week will include a lot of venison. We've a considerable amount in the freezer and I'm trying to keep the budget low for the rest of the month too!

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    1. i've never cooked with venison, but have had hamburgers and sausage with it.

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  7. I buy my meat through Zaycon so we have a TON of ham we just got. We tend to use it mostly for lunch sandwiches but also fit it in for random dinners. Today dh is bbqing a pork loin, and we we just picked up an order of b/s chicken breasts so I see a LOT of chicken on the menu this week.

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    1. I don't generally buy ham other than for holidays and occasionally as deli meat because of the salt content which DH has to watch, but pork loin and chicken in a abundance woudl be useful.

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