How I feed my family of 7 on just $85 a week budget
First of all, I know what your thinking that’s not even possible. So I’m here to tell you it is! In addition, we eat well and often have leftovers. I have always tried to be frugal and save money in every way I can. But now it’s the beginning of a new year and we are ready to really buckle down get serious and save some money. I have been searching Pinterest daily since I can remember. Always trying to find new ways to save and plan our meals.
I have tried it all! Freezer cooking, crock pot cooking, batch cooking, extreme couponing, shopping at Aldi, Rulers, Kroger, Target anything you can think of I have tried. It all benefited our family and worked well for about 2 weeks maybe a month. I could never seem to stick with it due to our crazy busy schedules. So I’d read a blog post. Get all excited. Set a goal to save money on our food budget and go for it.
Then over time it slowly faded. I’d get busy and one week I wouldn’t have time to make the detailed list, cut the coupons, freeze those meals or whatever else. Finally, that 1 week turned into 3-4 weeks. So I would go over our food budget again to see we had spent entirely too much money and as a result upset. Go back to Pinterest again only to repeat this cycle.
So here I am feeling stuck. Still trying to save money for our family but always feeling let down. I’m thinking their Has got to be a better way. A better way for moms like me who are busy and have kids to still save money and create a realistic grocery budget without all the hassle. To only have to shop one store and not have to use coupons, price match, cook in bulk or any of that stuff. So I set a goal to find a way!
A grocery Budget you can stick with.
After a few months of research, I have done that. I will share with you simple meals I’ve come up with. Each will have a detailed price list with cost per item and total meal cost. So all you have to do is pick a meal and go to WalMart and buy the items. How amazing! This is exactly what I was looking for but couldn’t find. So my hope is that other moms who are looking for a simpler solution can use these meals to simply your life. Most of all I have done all the hard work for you.
These meals are not elaborated but they are affordable simple meals you can feed your family on a very small budget. I’ve tried my best to keep each meal at $12 or under. One may be a little less or more so it even’s out. Also, I only shop at WalMart. Since WalMart is the only grocery store I have in my small town. Because of this, I use every great value brand item I can to further cut cost and get my grocery budget down. I have found everything great value brand I’ve tried has been as good or better than the name brand products. We would have to travel 1 hour to the nearest Sams, Target, or Aldi’s. We have done this in the past but it’s not very convenient with 5 kids.
PLUS some WalMart’s finally have where you can order your groceries online and simply go to the store to pick up and they even load them in your car. that’s like a mother’s DREAM. Please please let our WalMart start doing this soon.
Ok, so enough rambling and I’ll finally get to showing you our week one meal plan on a small budget.
Meal Plan Week One
Please keep in mind prices may vary depending on where you live these are the prices in Kentucky.
- 4 pie crust $1.53 each
- carrots $ 0.84
- celery $1.93
- onion $1.00
- chicken broth $0.77
- 3 large chicken breast $3.43
- biscuits $1.98 ****optional
Total cost $13.01
BBQ Pulled Pork With Chips (click for recipe)
- 4 lb Bone-in pork shoulder roast $5.66 @1.54 Lb
- Sams BBQ Sauce 40 oz $2.24
- Great Value regular chips $2.98
- Great Value hamburger buns $0.88
Total cost $11.76
Pork Chops With Mac N Cheese And Potatoes
- Pork chops (mine had 8 to the pack) $5.01
- Great Value shells and cheese $1.64
- 5 Lb bag russet potatoes (you have enough to use for 2 meals) $2.00
- Pork chop seasoning Great Value $1.18
Total cost $9.83
- 4 small cans of great value tuna $2.96 drained
- 1/2 cup white onion diced $1.00
- 4 oz cream cheese $0.92
- 1 can of great value cream of mushroom soup $1.84
- 1 8 oz bag extra wide egg noodles great value brand $1.00
- 1 cup shredded Colby jack cheese $3.12
- 1 cup french fried onions $0.96
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
Total Meal Cost $11.80
- 1 pound ground beef $2.06
- 1 taco bell seasoning packet $0.98
- Taco Bell cheese dip 15 oz $2.68
- Ortega flour tortilla 10 counts $1.64
- Great value Sour cream 8 oz $0.96
- Total cost $8.32
- 5-pound bag russet potatoes $2.37
- Great Value 48 oz (6 cups) Chicken Broth $2.34
- 16 0z carrots $0.84 (you will have plenty left over)
- Dole celery $1.34 (you will have plenty left over)
- Heavy whipping cream $1.34
Total cost = $8.23
- 2lbs ground beef $4.12
- chili season package 0.98
- diced tomatoes .50
- tomato sauce .90
- 4 cans chili beans .50 each $2.00
- onion powder, salt, and pepper to taste
- **optional saltine crackers .77
Total Meal Cost $9.27
Total cost for all 7 meals is $72.22
This leaves some money left for any staple items you might not have or need more of.
If you aren’t already using these apps please go get them now. they are amazing and can save you even more money!
Walmart savings catcher app
To bring your cost down even lower use Walmart’s Savings Catcher App. With Savings Catcher if a local competitor has a lower advertised price, you get an eGift Card for the difference. I have got so much money back on gift cards by doing this. Plus once you scan in your receipts on the Savings Catcher App you can toss them and if you need to make a return on an item all you need to do is pull up that app at the store and scan. Amazing! So simple.
If you still prefer certain name brand products always use IBOTTA to get rebates. Ibotta is not just for groceries, They have tons of great rebates on all types of products. I typically get back $5-$10 a week just from Ibotta! All you need to do is scan in your receipt on the app. It’s like free money. You can sign up through this link (If you do sign up please use my link so I will get a small referral credit. You will be saving money and helping out my little family all at the same time) https://ibotta.com/register?friend=CDRGHXO
Helpful Information About This Week’s Meal Plan
First of all, I did not include staple items like butter, milk, salt, pepper etc that you would typically already have at home in with the meal price. As a result, you may need to purchase some of these. While I wanted to include these it would be pretty difficult to add in spices, butter, and milk etc. for each recipe. I felt it would be easier to just say you’d spend roughly $10-12 a week on those items.
Ideally, you would go over your own meal plan and try to create meals using every ingredient you purchase so you have zero waste. I will just those leftover chicken breast for lunches for me and my younger kids who aren’t in school yet.
I always cook enough for 7 people but keep in mind 2 of those 7 are only 2 years old and don’t eat much so we always have leftovers for my husband to take to work and I usually eat leftovers for lunch the next day also. If you feeding 7 adults or older kids this would most likely not be enough and you’d need to double these meals.
My 3 older kids eat breakfast and lunch at school every day. So I only cook one meal a day.
We buy 2 bags of cereal a week and 1-2 bags of chips, lunch meat, bread, milk, kool-aid, and tea and any staple items we need.
Sometimes this may go over $85 but I always stay around $100. I’ve had some negative feed back about this post being misleading and I want to make it clear that is in no way my intentions. My goal was to give recipes and a price point for simple affordable meals for large families like my self and help some other mommas out who may feel as overwhelmed as I did with a grocery budget.
From here on out I will make sure to title my post more clearly so people do not feel mis-lead. Thanks for all those who have read and who have given so much positive feed back! I am so great full 🙂 I am turning off my other 3 weeks of meal plans for a bit to get those revamped and clearly list meals and prices to avoid further confusion!
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