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DINNERS FOR DOLLARS

February 20-26
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Pizza Casserole
1 lb bowtie pasta, cooked ($1.06)
1 lb sausage crumbles ($1.68)
2 jars (26oz each) spaghetti sauce ($4.58)
1 lb cubed ham ($2.98)
1 lb sliced pepperoni ($2.00)
24 oz shredded mozzarella cheese ($5.89)
6 T grated parmesan cheese ($1.16)
1 t oregano (on hand)

In sprayed 13×9 baking dish, spread thin layer of spaghetti sauce. Layer 1- ⅓ pasta, ⅓ spaghetti sauce, 8 oz mozzarella cheese, 2 T parmesan cheese and sausage crumbles. Layer 2- ½ remaining pasta, ½ remaining sauce, 8oz mozzarella cheese, 2 T parmesan cheese and ham. Layer 3- remaining pasta and then sauce, 8 oz mozzarella cheese, 2 T parmesan cheese and completely cover top with pepperoni. Bake at 375 for 40 minutes.

COST-$19.35
This meal is not cheap. At all. But we are having guests on Monday and I needed something that would feed a group of kids and satifsy the adults too. This dish is yummy and it makes a ton. We get about 18-20 servings out of this dish so you can always halve or quarter it if you need to and it will be much cheaper. In this quantity it works out to be around $0.97 per serving, much cheaper than ordering pizzas.

Monte Cristo Crescents

1 lb sliced ham ($3.49)
2 packs crescent rolls ($3.96)
8 slices swiss cheese ($1.67)
Raspberry or strawberry jam (on hand)
powdered sugar (on hand)

Unroll crescents into triangles. Place a slice of ham and half of a slice of the cheese on top of crescent and roll it up. Bake at 375 for 12-15 minutes. After baking, sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with jam for dipping.

COST-$9.12
These are so good! I always serve them with sweet potato fries for some reason, the kids love the combo of flavors. I love Monte Cristo sandwiches but I have a sensitivity to eggs. So I make it this way instead and it satisfies the craving- plus this way has a lot less calories! We get 6 dinners and 2 lunches out of this which makes them about $1.14 per serving.

Taco Bake

1 lb ground beef ($3.89)
1 can diced tomatoes, un-drained ($0.68)
¼ cup water
1 pkg Taco Seasoning mix ($0.62)
¾ cup sour cream ($1.06)
7 cups tortilla chips ($2.29)
cups shredded Colby & Monterey Jack cheese ($2.32)

Brown meat and drain. Add tomatoes, water and seasoning mix. Cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in sour cream. Place half the chips in baking dish, cover with half each of the meat mixture and cheese. Repeat layers. Bake 20 minutes or until heated through. Garnish with chopped tomatoes if desired.

COST-$10.86
This is another dish that makes a bunch. And it’s so yummy. The kids love it and always clean their plates, which in our house is a score! We get 6 dinners, 2 lunches and leftovers which makes it about $0.84 per serving.

Crockpot Chicken Cordon Bleu (recipe credit)

3 frozen chicken breasts ($2.99)
1 can cream of chicken soup ($0.60)
1 cup milk (on hand)
4 oz sliced ham ($2.49)
4 oz sliced Swiss cheese ($1.67)
1 pkg dry stuffing mix ($1.67)
1/4 cup butter, melted

Mix together the cream of chicken soup and milk in a small bowl.  Pour enough of the soup into the crockpot to cover the bottom. Layer the chicken breasts over the sauce. Cover with slices of ham and then swiss cheese. Pour the remaining soup over the layers, stirring a little to distribute between layers. Sprinkle the stuffing on top, and drizzle butter over the stuffing. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.

COST-$9.42
This is so yummy! I was a little skeptical about chicken cordon bleu in the crockpot but it did not disappoint. It makes enough for 6 dinners, 2 lunches and leftovers which works out to be about $0.79 per serving.

Ravioli Casserole

1 jar (28oz) spaghetti sauce ($2.29)
1 pkg (25oz) frozen cheese ravioli ($3.89)
2 cups (16oz) cottage cheese ($1.98)
16 oz shredded mozzarella cheese ($3.69)
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese ($1.16)

Cook and drain the Ravioli. Spread ½ cup spaghetti sauce in bottom of 13×9 baking dish. Layer with half the ravioli, 1¼ cups sauce, 1 cup cottage cheese, and 2 cups mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes. Let stand 5-10 minutes before serving.

COST-$13.01
I make this dish when we are having guest because it’s easy and everyone seems to love it. Throw together a side salad, add some garlic bread and viola- dinner is done! We usually get about 14-16 servings out of this dish if I serve it with salad and garlic bread. It works out to be around $0.81 per serving.



DINNERS FOR DOLLARS

February 13-19
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Chicken Parm Crescents (recipe credit)

1 can crescent rolls ($1.58)
8 fully cooked frozen chicken strips ($2.99)
8 slices mozzarella cheese, cut in half ($1.98)
1 t garlic powder (on hand)
1 jar spaghetti sauce ($1.98)
1 box pasta noodles, cooked ($1.06)

Preheat oven to 375.  Separate crescent rolls into 8 triangles.  Pour sauce into a bowl or saucepan.  Place one half slice of mozzarella cheese on top of crescent roll.  Dunk chicken finger into spaghetti sauce and place on top of cheese.  Roll up crescent and place on cookie sheet.  Repeat with remaining chicken fingers and crescents.  Sprinkle each roll with garlic powder.  Bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from oven and top each crescent with remaining half slice of mozzarella cheese.  Bake for additional 5-8 minutes.  Meanwhile, heat leftover spaghetti sauce and toss with cooked pasta.  Serve pasta with crescents.

COST-$9.59
These are soooo good. Every person in our family loves them and that almost never happens. I used half a bag of Tyson’s Crispy Chicken Strips for this recipe and they were perfect. This makes enough for 6 dinners and leftovers for 1 lunch. It works out to be around $1.37 per serving.

Mini BBQ Meatloaf Cups

1 lb lean ground beef ($3.98 on sale)
6 oz stove top stuffing ($1.58)
1 cup water
1 t garlic powder (on hand)
¾ cup BBQ sauce (on hand)
¾ cup shredded cheddar cheese ($1.16)

Heat oven to 375. Mix meat, stuffing mix, water and garlic powder until well blended. Press evenly into 12 muffin cups sprayed with Pam. Make an indention in center of each with back of spoon. Spoon BBQ sauce evenly into indentations. Bake 30 minutes. Top evenly with cheese, continue baking 5 minutes until cheese is melted.

COST-$6.72
The kids love these mini meatloaf cups and they are so easy and fast to throw together. This recipe makes 12 and I always serve it with loaded baked potatoes and a veggie so we get 6 dinners, 1 lunch and leftovers. These cost about $0.67 per serving.

Mexican Tater Tot Casserole

2 lbs ground beef ($5.98)
1 pkt taco seasoning ($0.62)
2 cans Fiesta Nacho Cheese soup ($2.00)
2 bags tater tots ($3.85)
1 bag frozen corn ($0.88)
2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend ($2.32)

Brown ground beef and add taco seasoning as directed on packet. Stir soups and cooked corn into meat mixture. Line bottom of ungreased baking dish with tater tots. Spread meat mixture over top of tater tots. Top with another layer of tater tots. Bake at 350 for 35 minutes. Top with shredded cheese and continue baking for additional 5-7 minutes until cheese is melted.

COST-$15.65
This is the casserole that goes on forever! The tater tots make it so filling that it doesn’t take much to fill you up! We get 6 dinners, 2 lunches and a bunch of leftovers which makes this dish about $0.98 per serving.

Crockpot Chicken Taco Chili

1 can (16oz) black beans ($0.68)
1 can (16oz) kidney beans ($0.68)
1 can (16oz) tomato sauce ($0.43)
1 pkg (10oz) frozen corn kernals ($0.88)
1 can (28oz) diced tomatoes ($1.48)
1 pkt taco seasoning($0.62)
1 T cumin (on hand)
1 T chili powder (on hand)
3 chicken breasts ($2.99)

Combine beans, corn, tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder and taco seasoning in crockpot. Place chicken on top and cover. Cook on low for 10 hours or high for 6 hours. Half an hour before serving, remove chicken and shred. Return chicken to crockpot and stir back in. Serve with cheese and sour cream.

COST-$7.76
This is so yummy. Sometimes I add cream cheese, which makes it even better. It makes a bunch too. We get 6 dinners, 2 lunches and leftovers so it works out to be about $0.65 per serving.



DINNER FOR DOLLARS

February 6-12

Crescent Pepperoni Roll-ups

2 cans crescent rolls ($3.96)
1 pkg pepperoni slices ($2.00)
8 mozzarella cheese sticks ($1.85 with coupon)
garlic powder (on hand)
pizza sauce ($2.78)

Unroll crescent rolls into 16 triangles. Place 3-4 slices of pepperoni on each triangle and top with half of a cheese stick. Wrap tightly and press to seal ends. Sprinkle crescent rolls with garlic powder. Bake at 375 for 12-15 minutes. Serve with pizza sauce.

COST-$10.59
My family loves these. There are usually only 3 leftover for Mr.McHunky to take for lunch the next day. I buy the Classico Pizza sauce and it is so yummy.  This dish works out to cost about $1.50 per serving, a little more than I usually spend but once in awhile we like to splurge Ha!

Ritz Chicken Casserole

2 sleeves Ritz crackers ($1.00)
1 can cream of chicken soup ($0.60)
1 cup sour cream ($1.46)
½ cup chicken broth ($0.77)
3 boneless chicken breasts, cooked ($2.99)
4 ounces margarine, melted (on hand)

Crumble 1 sleeve crackers in bottom of casserole dish. Drizzle ½ the melted butter over crackers. Cut cooked chicken into bit size pieces. Mix chicken with soup, sour cream and broth. Pour mixture over crackers. Crush other sleeve of crackers over chicken mix and drizzle remaining butter over top. Bake at 300 for 30-40 minutes.

COST-$6.82
This is a family favorite around here. You can’t imagine how yummy this is until you make it. We usually get 6 dinners, 2 lunches and leftovers from this meal so it works out to be about $0.62 per serving.

Bubble Up Enchiladas

1 lb ground beef ($5.98)
1 can (10oz) enchilada sauce ($1.67)
1 can (8oz) tomato sauce ($0.44)
1 can refrigerated flaky layer biscuits ($1.38)
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese ($2.32)

Preheat oven to 350. Brown ground beef and drain. Mix in enchilada sauce and tomato sauce. Cut the refrigerated biscuits into fourths and stir them in the meat mixture. Pour it all in a greased casserole dish and bake 25 minutes. Sprinkle cheese on top and bake an additional 10 minutes.

COST-$11.79
This is another family favorite! I use mild enchilada sauce because the kids are not fans of hot fire in their mouthes but if your family likes spic- use the hot enchilada sauce. This makes a bunch, we get 6 dinner, 3 lunches and leftovers. It works out to be about $0.84 per serving.

Baked Dijon Tilapia

10 Tilapia fillets ($4.97)
3 T olive oil (on hand)
2 T Dijon mustard (on hand)
1 T lemon juice (on hand)
2 t Worcestershire sauce (on hand)
½ cup breadcrumbs or crushed crutons ($1.06)

Spray baking dish with cooking spray. Place fillets in dish and salt and pepper to taste. Whisk together oil, mustard, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce in small bowl. Spoon and spread over each fillet. Sprinkle breadcrumbs over each fillet. Bake at 450 for 12-15 minutes.

COST-$6.03
We love fish in our house and even the pickiest of my kids will eat this without one complaint. I always use tilapia but you could use white fish or flounder if you prefer. I buy the frozen tilapia fillets from Wal*mart and use about half the box for this dish. We typically get 6 dinners and 2 lunches from this which works out to be around $0.75 per serving.

Meatball Sub Casserole

1 bag frozen meatballs ($4.38)
1 loaf italian or french bread, cut into 1″ slices ($1.05)
8 oz cream cheese, softened ($1.98)
½ cup mayo (on hand)
1 t italian seasoning (on hand)
¼ t pepper (on hand)
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese ($2.32)
1 jar (28oz) spaghetti sauce ($3.36)

Arrange bread in single layer in ungreased baking dish. Combine cream cheese, mayo, italian seasoning and pepper; spread over bread. Sprinkle with ½ cup mozzarella. Place meatballs evenly over bread layer. Pour spaghetti sauce over top and sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes.

COST-$13.09
I was hesitant to make this the first time because it sounded strange. But I am here to tell you that it is so dang good! We usually get 6 dinners, 3 lunches and leftovers. It costs me about $0.94 per serving.

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DINNERS FOR DOLLARS

January 30-February 5

Catalina Chicken

3 frozen chicken breasts ($2.99)
1 can jellied cranberry sauce ($0.89)
bottle Catalina dressing ($1.69)
1 pkg French Onion Soup mix (on hand)

Place chicken in bottom of crockpot. Pour remaining ingredients over top. Cook on low for 6 hours. Before serving, shred chicken and return to crockpot. Serve over rice.

COST- $5.57
This dish makes enough for 6 dinners, 1 lunch and leftovers on Wednesday. That makes it around $0.55 per serving. But make sure to not buy the fat free Catalina dressing, the taste is not the same in this dish.

Crockpot Orange Apple Pork Chops

10 boneless pork chops ($5.89 on sale)
1 cup apricot jam ($1.49)
3 T brown sugar (on hand)
1 t salt (on hand)
½ t pepper (on hand)
½ t cinnamon (on hand)
¼ t ginger (on hand)
¼ t cloves (on hand)
1 can (11oz) mandarin oranges, undrained ($0.68)

Place pork chops in bottom of crockpot. Mix jam, brown sugar and spices together and pour over pork chops. Pour can of mandarin oranges over top. Cook on low 6-7 hours and serve over rice.

COST- $8.06
This makes enough for 6 dinners and 1 lunch. That makes it around $1.15 per serving, which is more than I usually want to spend per serving but Mr.McHunky loves this dish. I only make this one every few months.

Italian Minestrone Soup

2 lbs ground beef ($5.89)
4 oz sliced mushrooms ($0.39)
2 stalks celery, sliced (on hand)
1 cup chopped carrot (on hand)
1 can diced tomatoes ($0.68)
1 T dried oregano (on hand)
4 cups beef broth ($2.09)
cup dried elbow pasta ($1.06)

Brown the ground beef and drain. Add meat to crockpot and mix in vegetables. Add whole can of tomatoes, oregano and beef broth. Stir well and cook on low for 8 hours. Half an hour before serving stir in dry pasta. Cook on high for 30 minutes until pasta is tender. Top with parmesan cheese.

COST-$10.11
I love this soup, it’s so good. It normally lasts for 6 dinners, 2 lunches and leftovers which makes it about $0.78 per serving.

Cowboy Chicken

3 frozen chicken breasts ($2.99)
1 T brown sugar (on hand)
1 T dijon mustard (on hand)
2 cups salsa ($1.69)
1 cup sour cream ($0.98)
1 can corn ($0.68)

Place chicken in bottom of crockpot. Mix brown sugar, mustard and salsa and pour over chicken. Add water to cover chicken with sauce. Cook on low for 6 hours. Half an hour before serving, shred chicken and return to crockpot and add sour cream and corn. Serve over rice.

COST-$6.28
This is a dish that the kids love! It makes 6 dinners, 2 lunches and leftovers which makes it around $0.52 per serving.

Loaded Baked Potato Soup

1 bag (30oz) frozen shredded hash browns ($2.98)
3 cans chicken broth ($2.31)
1 can cream of chicken soup ($0.60)
¼ t pepper (on hand)
1 pkg cream full fat cheese ($0.77)
shredded cheddar, bacon bits & sour cream for garnish

Combine all ingredients in crockpot except for cream cheese. Cook on low for 6-8 hours. About 1 hour before serving, add cream cheese and cook until melted. Serve with shredded cheese, bacon bits and sour cream.

COST-$6.66
I’m making this as part of our SuperBowl Sunday party. It makes a bunch, usually 12-14 servings, which makes it about $0.51 per serving for just the soup. Of course, we always add the shredded cheese, sour cream and bacon bits for extra yumminess. Those garnishes bump it up to around $0.85 per serving.



DINNERS FOR DOLLARS

I know I said I was going to do my menu plan posts on Thursday but of course, plans change quickly around here. I’m going to post my menus every Monday for that week. So the menu below is what we are eating this week. I realized it’s easier for me to add my cost to the recipes when I have time to go over the receipts and add up the prices.

January 23-29

Bacon Ranch Chicken Pasta

3 frozen chicken breasts ($2.99)
2 T real bacon bits ($0.89)
1 t minced garlic (on hand)
1 pkg ranch dressing mix ($0.68)
1 can cream of chicken soup ($0.60)
1 cup sour cream ($1.18)
1 lb pasta noodles, cooked ($1.08)

Combine bacon, garlic, ranch dressing mix, soup and sour cream; mix well. Place chicken in bottom of crockpot and pour mixture over top. Cook on low for 6 hours. Before serving, shred chicken and return to crockpot. Add pasta noodles and mix together.

COST- $7.42
This dish usually makes enough for 6 dinners, 2 lunches and enough for leftover Wednesday. That makes it around $0.62 per serving. And it’s delicious!

Spaghetti and Meatballs

1 lb frozen meatballs ($4.38)
1 lb dry angel hair pasta noodles ($1.02)
46 oz jar spaghetti sauce ($3.36)
½ sauce jar of water

Break noodles and place in bottom of crockpot. Pour in sauce and water. Add tiny dash of olive oil. Top with frozen meatballs. Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours. Serve with parmesan cheese.

COST-$8.76
I love this in the crockpot. I was afraid it might be dry when I first made it but it wasn’t. Plus it makes a lot. It makes enough for 6 dinners, 2 lunches and leftover Wednesday. That’s about $0.73 per serving.

Chicken and Dumplings

3 frozen chicken breasts ($2.99)
2 cans cream of chicken soup ($1.20)
2 cans of chicken broth ($1.54)
1 can refrigerated biscuits, cut into quarters ($1.38)

Put frozen chicken breasts in bottom of crockpot. Mix soups and broths and pour over chicken. Cook on low for 6 hours. Shred chicken and return to crockpot. Drop quartered bicuits into crockpot one by one making sure each gets covered. Continue cooking on low for 30 minutes to an hour.

COST-$7.11
I love this recipe. Everyone in my family loves this recipe. They normally all ask for seconds. It makes a lot- we get 6 dinners plus seconds, 2 lunches and leftovers.  It works out to be around $0.51 per serving.

Lasagna

2 lbs ground beef ($5.89)
1 jar spaghetti sauce ($1.98)
1 cup water
1 container (15oz) ricotta cheese ($1.38)
2 cups Italian cheese ($2.32)
¼ cup grated parmesan cheese (on hand)
1 egg (on hand)
6 lasagna noodles, uncooked ($0.95)

Cook ground beef, drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce and water. Mix ricotta, 1½ cups Italian cheese, 2 T parmesan cheese, and egg. Spoon 1 cup meat mixture into bottom of crockpot. Add 3 lasagna noodles on top (broken to fit) and then cheese mixture. Cover with 2 cups meat mixture. Top with remaining 3 lasagna noodles (broken to fit), cheese mixture and remaining meat mixture. Cook on low 4-6 hours. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and let stand, covered, for 10 minutes.

COST-$12.52
This is the best and easiest lasagna I have ever made. I even use the no boil lasagna noodles! It makes a bunch, which works out great for a large family. We get 6 dinners plus seconds, 2 lunches and leftovers. That’s about $0.89 per serving.

Sweet and Spicy Sausage

1 cup packed brown sugar (on hand)
¼ cup spicy mustard (on hand)
2 lbs Johnsonville sausage, sliced ($2.29)

In crockpot, combine brown sugar and mustard. Add sliced sausage and stir to coat evenly. Cook on low for 3 hours. Serve over rice.

COST-$2.29
This is another family favorite that’s easy to throw together. I always have rice on hand so that’s what I serve this with but it would be good with egg noodles too. We normally don’t have any leftovers of this dish so it costs about $0.38 per serving.