Whew....where did May go? That's okay though. It's June 1st and that means we only have 7 more days of school. Yes, thanks to all those snow days we have class until June 8th. But the beginning of the month also means it's time for me to take the $50 meal plan challenge once again, and share my ideas with all of you!
This meal plan was actually one designed around our Memorial Day weekend a couple weeks ago. One of our favorite summer time activities is heading to a local park, complete with splash pad, and let the boy run in the sun, play in the water, and then enjoy a tasty meal. And if I plan it just right, watch the sale ads, and buy carefully, a fun day can also be economical! I love when I can give my family great time, make some memories and still stay on budget!
Meal 1 (Picnic)
Tex-Mex Pasta Salad*
** I knew with the holiday weekend our local stores would have their deli fried chicken on special. I was able to get 8 pieces for only $4.99. The pasta salad was a great deal because it used many pantry items, and made enough for us to eat, and then have leftovers for lunch all week long. Plus, it's a new recipe to share with all of you!
Dijon Chicken Lettuce Cups
** I love making salads and light meals during the hot days of summer; plus not serving it on bread or rolls can sometimes save some cash. Plus this week our local Aldi had a coupon for $3 off fresh meat. I got over 2 lbs. of chicken for about $2! Oh, and they had the pineapple for $.99 too. Seriously, if you have an Aldi in your area and have never shopped there, check it out! They have great food (even gluten free and organic) at GREAT prices!
Baked Sweet Potatoes
** If this is your first time reading my challenge posts, seeing the word "steak" might confuse you when I'm supposed to be on budget. So let me explain for those of you who don't know. We have freezer beef on hands at all times. Sure, the initial cost might be something we have to save for, but over time it saves us a ton of money. If you have never looked into it, check with your local butcher and see if this might be an economical option for your family too.
** Breakfast for supper is a great way to feed your family on the cheap! For this menu, it was even better because I had already bought eggs for the picnic, so now had a great use for the extra ones.
So there you have it. Four meals for $50. I love being able to share these ideas with you, and maybe give you something you can start using to keep the weekly grocery store trip a little easier on the wallet!
Tex-Mex Pasta Salad
1 lb. tri color rotini, cooked, rinsed with cold water and drained
1 green pepper, chopped
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
3/4 c. canned corn
1/2 c. sliced black olives
1 (16 oz.) jar salsa
1/2 c. sour cream
2 tsp. garlic powder
3/4 tsp. cumin
2 TBS dried parsley
1/2 c. shredded Cheddar Jack cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 green onions, chopped
In a medium bowl combine salsa, sour cream, cumin, and garlic powder. Mix well. In a large bowl combine pasta, green pepper, black beans, olives corn, parsley, and cheese. Toss to combine. Pour dressing over. Stir well. Season with salt and pepper. Chill for at least an hour before serving. Garnish with green onions.
Shared on The Country Cook June 5, 2015