What are you feeding your family this week?
As you guys know we do large family meal planning around here. There are eight of us- my husband, myself, and six boys ranging from 18 years old to 2 years old. That is lots of kids.
We homeschool, so I need to prepare all meals each day at home for my family.
Large family meal planning on a budget can be done. I am proof of this!
Let me show you what we are having for dinner this week and how I create my menu while keeping my pocketbook in mind.
Batch Cooking Taco Meat and Freezing It
Three months ago I batch cooked about 12 pounds of ground beef that I turned into taco meat. I used my electric skillet and it all came together really quickly.
I froze it all into 1 pound portions so that I could pull it out as needed for making tacos… which is something my family loves to eat multiple times a month.
You can watch the video here on how I batch cooked all of that taco meat. You will need to join the Facebook group in order to watch the video. The group is my Get Dinner on the table community where I share daily with moms to help them with their dinner struggles.
This week I am wanting to cook on a budget and shop my pantry, freezer and fridge before ordering things from the grocery store. This is a great way to save money. It made sense to add tacos to my meal plan.
Another way that I save money on my shopping list is to buy things in bulk.
I buy brown rice, white rice, jasmine rice, bastami rice all in 20-25 pound bags. When I do this I am paying minimal prices per unit. This is a huge budget saver long term. It also means I always have rice on hand.
I also buy different boullions in bulk. I use this tomato boullion with the white rice and some water to make super easy homemade Spanish rice. This brand is Knorr and you get it at Walmart for less than $4 for 35 ounces. I can make rice for days with this stuff.
One thing I did buy this week is fresh, homemade tortillas from HEB. They make them fresh in their bakery. So good!
I heat them up on my electric griddle when I make tacos for dinner. (Sometimes I give this job to one of my teens.)
Large Family Meal Plan
Here is what’s on my menu for this week.
Beef Soft Tacos– using the taco meat that is in the freezer. Making the Spanish rice I talked about above and canned pinto beans. Super filling and super yummy!
Baked Salmon– my husband loves to bake fresh salmon. We have some family in town and salmon is something that will feed a crowd and something he loves to make. We will cook up some asparagus, mashed potatoes, and salad to go along with it.
Chicken Thigh Sheet Pan Dinner– for the sheet pan we will do thighs and then a variety of veggies like brussel sprouts, onion, bell pepper and sweet potatoes. Such an easy dinner! See the picture below. Healthy meals like this always make mama happy!
Skillet Lasagna– I made this last month and froze it. It’s part of our Skillet Recipe ecookbook.
Spaghetti for a Crowd– Thursday is my mother-in-laws birthday. I am making spaghetti for 16 people. I will serve garlic bread and salad with it. You could certainly make your sauce and let it simmer in the slow cooker all day long. Talk about flavor!!
Cheesy Chicken Salsa Pasta– this is a go to for me that is super fast to make. I already have bulk pasta and salsa on hand. I also have canned corn and frozen chicken breasts. No money spent to make this meal.
Leftovers- use em up! If there are not a ton of leftovers I will take all the odds and ends and make soup out of it. I have a ton of frozen odds and end leftovers that can be added to. Yum! Leftover soup is not only a budget friendly meal but all you’re doing is heating things up, adding broth or water and some canned or frozen veggies. Dinner will be done in 15 minutes.
(Look at those two sweet boys snacking on kettle corn in the background.)
Six Weeks Freezer Meal Plan
I know that coming up with new recipes can be hard. Sometimes we feel like we make the same things over and over again. We are also busy and during the week it can be really hard to get dinner done and on the table.
What if you could preassemble six weeks worth of dinners and store them away in your freezer?
Or, maybe freezer meals overwhelm you and you just need some new recipe ideas. These recipes can help make dinner time easy and you. And the next time your hungry kids ask, “What’s for dinner?”, you already have the answer!
Grab your six weeks worth of recipes!
Meal Planning Book
I understand that meal planning is hard. It can be very overwhelming. That is how I felt thirteen years ago when I first started meal planning.
If you break it down into easy steps you can wrap your head around it and you can get dinner on the table stress free.
Here is the meal planning book I wrote that breaks meal planning down into five simple steps with all the resources and solutions to make it possible!
Limit the Convenience Food
When you’re on a budget convenience foods can break the bank. Avoid them as much as possible.
Shop in bulk where you can to spend less per unit.
Grocery Shop Online to Stay on Budget
Avoid the temptations of impulse shopping by doing all of your grocery shopping online.
Also, no more carrying a calculator around the store with you to make sure you don’t over-spend. Online grocery shopping keeps a running tally of the cost of what is in your cart before you even check out.
Meal Planning Pinterest Boards
Are you on the hut for more recipes? I have two awesome board you will want to follow over on Pinterest that are all about meal planning.
Do you have a big family? How do you stay on budget and feed your family well at the same time? Tell me what’s on your meal plan this week!