Saturday, September 10, 2011

Playing a little Catch Up

So over the summer I participated in the pantry challenge and worked toward cleaning out our pantry and freezer.  It definitely worked and for the first time in a while our cabinets began to look a little bare and our freezer was no longer stuffed.  Both are good things.  I have totally slacked off on menu planning and as miserable as it makes me, yes I hate not having things already planned out, I just have not been able to do it and have still been having cravings.  Goodness, do pregnancy cravings make menu planning difficult.

I got back to my $40 a week at Aldi but this also mean that I was not buying any meat.  We had meat in the freezer which we ate and we were eating out way too often with traveling and cravings.  I realized this past week that our meat had dwindled down to 1 whole chicken, a bag of boneless skinless chicken breasts, 2 salmon filet's, 2 bags of shrimp (at most), and one pork roast.  That's it.  Sounds like a decent amount but that won't last long.  I've been checking our local grocery store ads and to be honest there haven't been any good sales on meat.  I am stubborn and only buy meat on sale.  I can't bring myself to pay $3 or more per pound.  Then I remembered that one of our local grocery stores sells meat bundles.  I checked out their bundle options.  

So yesterday we went and bought a 44lb meat bundle.  At $109.95 it came to  about $2.50/lb and included 5 lbs T-Bone steaks, 5 lbs hamburger meat, 4 lbs hot dogs, 10 lbs pork chops, 10 lbs spare ribs, and 10 lbs of chicken.  All of which are types of meats we would have purchased at the right price but not necessarily the exact cut of meat.  We were willing to eat a different cut of meat to get a price that we were happy with.  At home we did our normal deal of separating the meat into smaller, meal sized packs.

For $109.95 we ended up with:
6 t-bones
4 meal size packs of ribs
5 packs of hot dogs (no clue how many meals that will give us)
6- 1 lb packs of ground beefs
6 bags of assorted chicken (legs, thighs and wings)
4 small packs of pork chops (2 per bag) + 1 individual chop
3 large packs of pork chops (4 per bag)

Based on those amounts, including leftovers and guessing a little for the hot dogs we should be able to get approximately 35 meals breaking down to about $3 a meal.  We decided to try this out and see how long the meat lasts and to still keep our eyes peeled for sales.  We also made a trip to Sam's this week and between that, our regular shopping needs and getting stocked up on meat we are set.  It should just be the essentials for the next couple of weeks.  Thank goodness because we are already over budget for the month.  Luckily the meat will last a while as well as some of the items from Sam's.

I'm getting back into the habit of making our bread and really need to buckle down and get some more muffins and meals in the freezer for when peanut gets here.  One thing at a time I guess.

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