$200/MONTH MENU PLAN FOR OUR FAMILY OF 5 (POST #28)

Feel like you’re stuck in a rut and not sure what to have for dinner?  Here are the meals we’ve been eating lately on our $200/mo. grocery budget!

$200 Menu Plan-What Our Family of 5 Eats

If you are new to these menu plans of mine, it’s probably helpful to know a couple of things first:

  • Our family of five consists of two adults with fairly big appetites, an 8 year-old boy, a 4 ½ year-old girl, a 2 ½  year-old girl and an exclusively breastfed baby boy.
  • I buy lots of fruits and veggies in bulk from local farmers/orchards in the summer and then freeze or can them. This is not only much cheaper it is also healthier too. But that is why if you look at my Weekly Spending Summaries you won’t always see lots of produce.
  • I have a stockpile.  My cupboards are full from previous shopping and here’s why. When I can get pasta for free with coupons, I buy as much as I have coupons for.  If I’m able to get flour for $0.50/bag like I did last fall, I’ll buy half a dozen and put them in the freezer to use as needed.  I do this as much as my budget allows, on as many items as I can and as a result save lots of money. Then when I go to plan menus, I simply plan our meals around what I already have in my cupboards and freezer, as much as possible.  Obviously I still might have to buy a few things at regular price here and there, but by stocking up when the price is at rock bottom I save a lot.
  • We rarely snack.  By eating “heavy” food like granola at breakfast we don’t get hungry until lunch time.  And the same goes for the afternoon.  Our lunches are big enough that we usually are fine until dinner time.  When we do need a snack, I try to keep it mostly healthy by offering fruit, nuts or maybe No Bake Energy Bites.  We don’t always do it perfectly though, and sometimes end up having chips or cookies instead.
  • Our breakfasts consist of Homemade Granola or Baked Oatmeal, the occasional bought cereal that I was able to get for $0.50/box and sometimes some fruit too.  I know that might seem awfully boring to some of you, but we actually all really enjoy it and prefer it over other breakfast food.  I also have a homemade iced coffee, homemade frappe or some other fun beverage every morning.  It’s just one of the little things that I do to add a bit sunshine to my days!

Below you will find our lunches and dinners.  (If we ate something other than our usual breakfast, I’ll note that too.)  Monday through Friday, the lunches are just for the three children and I.  My husband takes a packed lunch with him to work and it typically consists of sandwiches, fruit, homemade yogurt and sometimes random leftovers too.

Mandarin Orange Jello Salad(3)

WEEK 1
Sunday

Monday

  • Various Leftovers; Homemade Yogurt; Fresh Peaches
  • Big Lettuce Salad (Lettuce and Chicken with lots of other add-ins); Homemade Applesauce; Homemade Caramel Pudding

Tuesday

Wednesday

  • Meat & Cheese Sandwiches made with Homemade Bread; Homemade Yogurt; Peaches (I preserved); Frozen Blueberries
  • Kidfresh Chicken Nuggets; Baked Potatoes/Sweet Potatoes; Lettuce Salad with Mexican Dressing; Leftover Homemade Caramel Pudding
    – I got the Kidfresh nuggets free with coupons a while back.  I like that they are “healthy” chicken nuggets and even though they are technically made for kids, we all enjoy them and it makes an easy dinner for us!

Thursday

  • Leftover Potatoes/Sweet Potatoes; Homemade Yogurt; Fresh Peaches; Apples
  • Hamburgers (pre-made ones that are pure ground beef); Homemade Potato Salad; Lettuce Salad; Leftover Caramel Pudding

Friday

Saturday

Creamy Crockpot Mexican Chicken

 

WEEK 2
Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

  • Meat & Cheese Sandwiches made with Homemade Bread; Homemade Yogurt; Peaches (I preserved); Frozen Blueberries
  • Homemade Breakfast Sandwiches (eggs/bacon/cheese on bagels); Lettuce Salad; Fresh Peaches

Thursday

Friday

  • Egg in a Nest made with 100% Whole Wheat Bread (basically an egg fried in bread); Homemade Yogurt; Canned Peaches (I preserved); Frozen Blueberries
  • Herb Roasted Chicken (basically chicken and roasted veggies with a buttery herb glaze); Cooked Carrots; Homemade Applesauce; Blueberry Buckle with Ice Cream

Saturday

  • Spent the day with family at my in-law’s

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Comments

  1. Stacie says

    I love your blog!! In many of the posts that I have read you talk about eating “homemade yogurt” for breakfast, but I can’t find a recipe listed for it? Is it hard to make?

    • ThriftyFrugalMom says

      Hi Stacie, so sorry for the slow response. Things have been a bit hectic around here lately and I’ve struggled keeping up with everything. :)

      That yogurt recipe is probably my most requested recipe and I really need to get it posted here! :) It’s also super easy to make, so no worries there! I’ll be happy to email it to you though so you don’t have to wait until I get it posted. Thanks for asking!

  2. Jennifer says

    so great that you have those great deals/coupons to use! I have never, ever seen one of these great deals or nearly-freebies in my area. Double coupons don’t exist, and coupons never seen to coexist with sales. ? I do my best, but wish I had more couponing options.

    • ThriftyFrugalMom says

      Jennifer, yes, we do live in an area where I’m able to do extremely well with coupons. And trust me, I don’t take it for granted- I realize it’s a huge blessing! At the same time, unless you live outside the US I can almost guarantee that you can find a store or two in your area where you could do at least reasonably well with using coupons. One of the things that has helped me SO much is to find a coupon matchup blog. The one I use is Forthemommas.com, but there are thousands out there. To find one that covers the store(s) you shop, I’d recommend googling something like “coupon match-ups” along with the store’s name. The great thing about these blogs is that they list all the coupons available for each item that is on sale that week. So for instance, you said that the coupons never seem to coexist with the sales. But these coupon websites search coupon databases and will actually find coupons for sale items even when you may not think there are any available! Even if you don’t want to spend a lot of time couponing, using these websites is a great way to save some money without investing a lot of time. You can simply skim over the list of deals, choose the ones you want and then print out any coupons you need.

      Hope that helps a little! :)

  3. says

    Wow! This is impressive! That’s our budget for the TWO of us for the month and we can barely get by, and when people hear they are shocked at how we can have such a LOW budget…for TWO!! Maybe the fact that we live in Seattle adds on to that? Anyways, you are amazing!!

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