Nov 3, 2008

Menu Planning Monday - Watch out for B1G1 sales

I thought I'd mention briefly how I do my menu planning to keep in line with my food budget (which I have lowered by almost 50% in recent months). I do 90% of my grocery shopping at Krogers. I've shopped there 20+ years, and it's important for me to know the lay-out of a store and know my prices. I also like the fact that several times a year, Krogers sends me what I call "loyalty coupons" which are $1.00 and over coupons for items coming up on sale within a few weeks. Included in these coupons are wonderful coupons for 10% off my entire bill. When I get these, I try and do at least two weeks shopping at once -- in an effort to get 10% the most possible! This morning is menu planning morning, so the first thing I did was look at the ongoing list on the fridge to see what had been written down during the week. Next, I take a look in my freezer and see what meats are in there (these are meats I have bought on sale previously) and mentally get some meal ideas from those meats, then write those down on paper. Next, I sit at the computer and go to the Kroger web site, sign in, and pull up their current week's ad. Yes, I do get the paper ad every week, but I prefer to do this part on the computer. I sit with my box of current coupons, and look through the ad, and look at the list of meal ideas I have. This week in the freezer I have ground beef, boneless pork chops and chicken tenders. So one of my first meal ideas is Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans. I see that Kroger has Oatmeal on sale, and I need that for the meatloaf, so I simply check the box for that ad, and the web site adds it to my shopping list. They also have a good sale on canned veggies this week, so I check that box as well. I know I need eggs for the meatloaf (as well as for two breakfasts), so I click on "Notes" on the web page, and type in "Eggs". I go all the way through the Kroger ad, clicking on items on sale, hopefully matching items up with my coupons, and typing in items in the "Notes" section that I need whether on sale or not. Then I simply hit the PRINT button and my Shopping List is ready for me. I then mark items that I have pulled coupons for, and paperclip my coupons to the Shopping List. I need to mention Krogers Buy One Get One Free sales. Watch out for these. They very often put the price of the "one" up SO high above what they normally charge that you're paying more for TWO than you normally would for one. A good example this week is the Eckrich bologna - Buy 1 Get 1 free and in tiny print you see "Save up to $2.99 with card". That means they're going to charge you $2.99 for one, when the normal sale price on this product is .99! You can wait and buy three of these on sale, for what you would today pay one! The Hillshire Farm Smoked Sausage is B1G1 at $4.09. These are frequently on sale for .99 and non-sale price is normally $1.99! These B1G1 sales often COST you money, so do be careful! And by the way? That Eckrich bologna is nasty stuff anyway... lol... not even worth the .99 cent sale price, in my opinion! So with all that said, here are my menues for the week. As always, Wednesday and Friday are the days I babysit my DGS (darling grandson) and he doesn't leave until 5:30pm, at which point I'm exhausted and don't feel like cooking. So either I plan a "quick meal" or he and I put together a crockpot meal in the morning.
Monday BBQ Chicken tenders on grill Mixed green salad with tomatoes, onions, croutons Tuesday Meatloaf, beef gravy Mashed potatoes Canned green beans Wednesday Leftover meatloaf in open-faced sandwich Green salad Thursday Stuffed baked pork chops* Brown rice (make extra for Saturday) Green peas Friday Bagels w/cream cheese Tomato soup Saturday Baked chicken tenders Frugal Rice Pilaf w/veggies Sunday - Breakfast for dinner A cheese dish DH saw on the Food Network's Diners, Drive-in's and Dives Sausage, onions, peppers, potatoes and eggs cooked together English Muffins
Now I'm off to do my grocery shopping!

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