Sunday, January 29, 2012
How I fed a family of 6.75 two dinners for $15
Money is scarce around these parts. We scrimp to get by. There are a lot of luxuries that we forgo. We do without cable, internet, and frequent meals out.
The hardest part of our budget to manage is food. According to the FDA’s Thrifty food plan, it should cost $200 a week to feed a family of our magnitude.
I currently spend $125 or less each week. Anymore and we’d be short on the utilities or car insurance or gas.
It helps that the big kids go to school 5 days a week. That’s 15 breakfasts and lunches I don’t have to fix. We (well, Side Salad and I do) qualify for WIC so that takes care of cereal and milk. We also get some fruits and veggies, peanut butter, beans, eggs, cheese, a little juice and bread/brown rice/tortillas. It really does help with dairy being so pricey these days.
So as we were eating dinner tonight, I realized that I had really made out like a bandit on tonight and last night’s dinners. If I had known how perfectly this would come out, I would have taken pics. I’ll just try to remember.
I made beef stew from a roast that I’d gotten on sale for $5.32. I just threw it in the crockpot with a family size can of cream of mushroom (less than $2 for the store brand on sale). I made two packs of Idahoan mashed potatoes, the roast garlic kind ($2) and one of those giant cans of green beans (I think it was $2-3). I served it with toast. The kids loved it and so did Lettuce.
There was a little meat and gravy left. I added 6 cups of water and a veggie bouillon cube and heated it up. Then I put in about a cup and a half of barley. I wish we’d had some carrots but the kids ate ‘em all and the hubs had the car. I made more toast and we had beef and barley soup with whole wheat toast on the side. I wish I’d had salad fixings; that would have made it a perfect meal! Instead, we had more green beans.
Tonight, I’ll be sitting down to meal plan for this week. Perhaps I’ll start sharing my meal plans.