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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.



DINNERS FOR DOLLARS

JANUARY 16-22

Don’t you love this cute little menu? It’s a free printable that I found on pinterest. I’ve been doing really good for the past few months with planning menus and cutting our grocery budget. I’ve also been using my crockpot almost exclusively and I love it. Seriously. Love it. I buy those nice slow cooker bags that make clean up a snap for Mr.McHunky, because we have the “I cook it, you clean it” rule at our house.

I grocery shop on Friday’s so I will be doing my weekly menu posts on Thursday’s for the following week. The menu above covers Monday January 16 thru Sunday January 22. I will post the menu and then each of the recipes, including the total cost of each.

Baked Ziti

1 box ziti noodles ($0.85 on sale)
1 lb sliced sausage ($2.29)
1 jar spaghetti sauce ($1.68 on sale w/ coupon)
1 can sliced mushrooms ($0.49)
1 carton ricotta cheese ($1.38)
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese ($2.32)
1 cup shredded parmesan cheese ($1.98)

Mix ziti noodles and spaghetti sauce in bottom of crockpot. Add about ¼ cup water to jar, shake and pour over ziti noodles. Add sausage, mushrooms, ricotta and 1 cup of mozzarella cheese. Stir together until mixed well. Top with remaining mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese. Cook on low for 6 hours.

COST- $10.99
I’ve made this dish before and it makes enough for our family of 6 to eat dinner one night, Mr.McHunky to eat leftovers the next day plus still enough for Leftover Wednesday’s dinner. That’s about $0.85 per serving.

BBQ Sandwiches

3 frozen boneless chicken breasts ($2.99)
1 bottle BBQ sauce ($1.19 on sale w/ coupon)
1/4 cup brown sugar (in pantry)
3 T worcestershire sauce (in pantry)
Hamburger buns or sandwich rolls ($1.06)

Dump frozen chicken breasts, BBQ sauce, brown sugar and worcestershire sauce into crockpot and cook on low for 5 hours. Shred chicken and return to crockpot, cooking additional hour. Serve on hamburger buns or sandwich rolls.

COST- $5.24
I use the bags of frozen boneless chicken breasts and I get 2 dinners out of a $5.98 bag. This dinner makes enough for dinner for the 6 of us plus Mr.McHunky takes it for lunch the next day. I serve this with tater tots and a veggie. The cost for just the BBQ sandwiches is about $0.75 per serving.

Enchiladas– recipe adapted from HERE

1-2 lb ground beef ($5.89)
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed ($0.68)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed ($0.68)
1 can diced tomatoes with garlic ($0.98)
cup water
1 t chili powder (in pantry)
½ t cumin (in pantry)
½ t salt (in pantry)
¼ t pepper (in pantry)
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar ($1.16)
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese ($1.16)
6 flour tortillas ($0.99)

Brown ground beef and drain. Add all ingredients except cheese and tortillas; bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. In separate bowl, cominbe cheeses. In crockpot, layer ¾ cup beef mixture, one tortilla and ⅓ cup of cheese. Repeat layers. Cook on low for 5-6 hours.

COST- $11.54
I’ve made this dish before as well. It makes a ton so if you have a smaller family you might want to half this recipe. I use 2lbs on ground beef. We get a full dinner for all 6 of us, plus lunch for Mr.McHunky on Friday and lunches for the family on Saturday. That’s about $0.89 per serving.

Swiss Chicken

3 frozen chicken breasts ($2.99)
6 slices swiss cheese ($1.09)
1 can cream of mushroom soup ($0.60)
¼ cup milk
2 cups stuffing mix ($1.68)
½ cup margarine, melted

Spray crockpot with cooking spray. Place chicken breasts in botton of crockpot. Top with cheese slices. Combine soup and milk; mixing well. Spoon over cheese. Sprinkle with stuffing mix. Drizzle melted butter over top. Cook on low 8 hours or high 4-6 hours. Before serving, shred chicken and return to crockpot; stirring mixture well.

COST- $6.36
This dish normally makes enough for dinner for the 6 of us plus a lunch for Mr.McHunky. That’s about $0.91 per serving.

Chili & Cornbread

2 lbs ground beef, cooked ($5.89)
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed ($0.68)
1 pkt chili seasoning ($0.69)
1 can diced tomatoes with garlic ($0.98)
1 can tomato sauce ($0.46)
1/4 cup ketchup
1 T sugar
2 boxes Jiffy corn muffin mix ($0.50)

Mix all ingredients in crockpot and cook on high for 3 hours. Serve with cornbread.

COST- $9.20
We love chili. We are also chili minimalists, we don’t like a lot of extras in our chili. I’ve experimented for years to find the perfect chili recipe with the right brand of products. I use the generic Wal*mart pinto beans, tomato sauce and mild chili seasoning and I use Hunt’s Fire Roasted diced tomatoes with garlic. The flavors are great. Mr.McHunky adds hot sauce to his and we all top it with cheese. It makes a ton- we get dinner for the 6 of us, plus 2 lunches and another night of leftovers for 4 of us. That makes it about $0.77 per serving including the cornbread.

Hawaiian Ham Sammiesrecipe credit

1 pkg of 12 Hawaiian sweet rolls ($2.24)
1 onion, minced (on hand)
1 stick of butter (on hand)
3 T dijon mustard (on hand)
2 t worcestershire sauce (on hand)
3 t poppy seeds (on hand)
1/2 lb shaved ham ($1.99)
8 slices swiss cheese ($1.09)

Melt butter in small skillet and add onions. Add mustard, worcestershire sauce and poppy seeds into onion and butter. Let simmer for several minutes. Slice rolls as a group lengthwise and place bottoms in a foil lined 13×9 pan. Spread 3/4 of onion mixture on rolls in pan and top with ham and cheese slices. Replace roll tops. Spread remaining onion mixture over top. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes on 350.

COST- $5.32
I haven’t made these before but I thought they would go perfectly with NFL playoff Sunday. I don’t imagine we’ll have many leftovers since the recipe only calls for 12 rolls. I’m guessing it will end up costing about $0.89 per serving.