You can read more about my $40 weekly budget in this post here.
If you have blogged a menu plan for the week (or even just a favorite recipe), please feel free to comment and share your link. I’m always looking for new ideas and inspiration and will be happy to share a link to your blog if we try your recipe!
If you need inspiration, check out the weekly meal plans here are Organized Junkie.
SUNDAY ~ Pot roast, mashed potatoes, salad, and rolls – My HEB grocery store has “Combo loco” meals where you buy one item and then get other items for free. I hardly ever shop there, but Saturday I stopped by because they had a deal on chicken breasts and cantaloupe and got sucked into the meal deal, too. You buy the pot roast (which was $4.99) and then you get Simply potatoes mashed potatoes (you just have to microwave them) and the salad for free! I figured that a meal for the whole family for less than $5 was worth it!
MONDAY ~ Chicken licking pork chops (slow cooker) – This is a carry over from last week
6-8 lean pork chops, 1-inch thick
1/2 cup flour (omit if you don’t brown chops in skillet)
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp oil (omit if you don’t brown chops in skillet)
1 10.5oz can chicken & rice soup
Dredge pork chops in mixture of flour, salt, dry mustard & garlic powder. Brown chops in oil in a large skillet. Place browned pork chops in crockpot. Add can of soup. Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours or high 3 1/2 hours. If I don’t brown the chops, then I just toss the salt, dry mustard & garlic powder in the crockpot instead of dredging the chops.
*Note: When making this meal, I use a can of family size chicken & rice soup and drain off some of the broth – it keeps the meat tender and there is more of the chicken & rice mixture for everyone!
TUESDAY ~ French dip sandwiches (slow cooker)
2 cans beef broth
1 tsp dried rosemary
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp garlic powder
4-6 hoagie buns
(we also add some swiss or provolone cheese)
Place roast in a greased slow cooker. Pour broth over the top of the roast. Add spices. Cover and cook on low heat 8-10 hours (or high heat 5-7 hours). Remove roast and save extra juice. With a fork, break the meat apart and serve on hoagies. Use excess juice for dipping sandwiches.
WEDNESDAY ~ Slow cooker orange chicken – This is a new one from the Year of Slow Cooking blog
1/2 pounds boneless chicken, cut in 2-inch chunks
1/2 cup flour (I used Pamela’s Baking Mix)
olive oil, for browning the chicken
1 tablespoon kosher salt
6 ounces (1/2 can) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed (I’d opt for little-to-no pulp. The pulp can taste a bit bitter when cooked)
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons ketchup
Notes (from the blog author): I’ve heard from a few readers that 1 tablespoon of salt is too much. If you are using iodized or table salt, this will be the case. Kosher salt doesn’t taste as “salty” as regular salt, and since the granules are larger, you don’t get as much in the tablespoon as you would with regular salt. Adjust accordingly.
Use a 4 quart slow cooker for best results. Dredge the chicken pieces with the flour, and shake off the excess. Go ahead and throw away any remaining flour, we won’t need it. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on the stove and brown the chicken on all sides. There is no need to fully cook it, just sear it enough for the flour to stick and get a nice coating.
Plop the chicken pieces into your slow cooker. In a small mixing bowl, combine the orange juice concentrate, brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, salt, and ketchup. Taste. If you’d like the chicken to be a bit sweeter, add a touch more sugar. Pour sauce mixture evenly over the chicken, and toss gingerly to coat.
Cover and cook on low for 6 hours, or on high for 3 to 4. Serve over white or brown rice.
THURSDAY ~ Meatloaf on a bed of potatoes
(even if you don’t like meatloaf, this is SUPER easy to make and very kid/family friendly! we never have leftovers)
From BabyCenter Cooking for Your Family
2 T olive oil
3 large russets, cut into 1 to 1-1/2” chunks
2 lb ground sirloin
2 large eggs, beaten
3/4 cup crushed saltine crackers
3/4 cup ketchup
2 T dehydrated onions (optional)
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup ketchup
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
Combine oil and potatoes in crock pot, toss to coat. Spread in an even layer on the bottom of the crock.
In a large bowl, combine beef, eggs, crumbs, ketchup, onion, salt and pepper. Mix gently, do not compact. Shape into oval or round, place on top of potatoes. Spread with topping.
Cover and cook on High for 1 hour. Reduce heat to Low and continue to cook for 6-7 hours, or until a meat thermometer reads 160º to 165ºF.
Sandy’s notes: I used plain ketchup for the topping since that is my family’s preference. To make the meatloaf easier to remove: Take two long pieces of foil and fold them into two strips. Place them across each other over the potatoes and set the meatloaf on top. Use as handles to remove when the meatloaf is done.
**My notes: When I make this, I sprinkle parsley and Mrs. Dash seasoning over the potatoes.
FRIDAY ~ Parsley Parmesan chicken (freezer meal) – This has become a “hit” in our house. I actually don’t have any in the freezer right now, so I’m making this one “fresh.”
2 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts (or 6-8 chicken breasts)
1/3 bottle of Italian salad dressing
1/2 c shredded Parmesan cheese
1/3 c dry bread crumbs (used Seasoned Italian bread crumbs)
1 1/2 T parsley flakes
1/2 T paprika
Salt & Pepper
Marinate chicken in dressing overnight.
Mix the remaining ingredients and bread each breast with coating.
To Freeze: Lay chicken breasts side by side on baking sheets and place in freezer for 1 to 2 hours to firm up. Place chicken in labeled gallon size Freezer Bag and freeze.
Thaw & bake at 350 uncovered for 30 minutes or until done.
Lunch: Split pea with ham soup (slow cooker) – I got this recipe from a BBC cooking board – this is my first time making it
1 bag Split Peas
Diced Ham (chop it yourself or buy the pre-diced ham)
Carrots – as many as you like
49oz can chicken stock
Dash of thyme
Dump it all in the crock and add water to cover the peas if needed. Cook on low for about 8 hours.
Dinner: Creamy chicken enchiladas
1 can cream of chicken soup (I use the 98% FF kind)
1 can cream of mushroom soup (I use the 98% FF kind)
2 cans green enchilada sauce
1 8 oz-16 oz. tub of sour cream (depends how spicy you want the enchiladas)
2-3 chicken breasts, shredded (if I’m in a hurry, I use canned chicken)
1 lb. cheese, shredded
1 dozen flour tortillas (you could use corn also)
Add cream of chicken soup, cream of mushroom soup, and enchilada sauce to a pan. Cook on medium low heat, stirring occasionally. When sauce is will mixed and starts to thin, add sour cream. Continue stirring occasionally until the sauce is well mixed and thinned out. Place a layer of the sauce along the bottom of a 9X13 baking dish. Fill each tortilla with the shredded chicken, sauce, and cheese. Roll and place in the baking dish. When you have filled all of the tortillas (this should make 1 dozen), pour the remain sauce over the top of the enchiladas and then cover with cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes until the cheese is well melted.