Sunday, March 11, 2012

5 meals under $50: Shopping List

I'm so excited to launch a new series here at K&K Test Kitchen.  I have to admit that this idea came from a fabulous new website, The Everygirl.  Lara, from Simply Irresistible, put together 5 recipes (2 servings each) for a week's worth of dinners for under $50.  I've been trying to get inspired to do three things:  1) plan my meals for each week, 2) start doing a better job budgeting for my meals, and 3) cook for just one person.  So, the feature on The Everygirl inspired me to create my own weekly menu and to try to keep it under $50.  [Please note, this really isn't about being frugal.  It is about setting a food budget and trying to stay under it.  And while the series is called "5 under $50," I actually spent way less than $50.  I left it at $50 in recognition that some grocery stores are more or less expensive than the one that I go to.  I am sure that it is possible to spend a lot less at the grocery store for the week, but the point here wasn't to try to spend the least amount possible, it was to have 5 completely different meals.]

So, how did I come up with this menu?  First, I looked at the types of ingredients that Lara used - veggies, pasta, 2 types of meat - because to be honest, I'm not very good at determining how much food costs.  Second, I thought about ingredients that could be used for more than one recipe - things that would do double duty, especially since each recipe would only serve 2 people (or in my case, be a dinner and a lunch).  Third, I thought about the types of food that I like to eat :)

Meal 1:  Cauliflower Puttanesca
Meal 2:  Chicken Pizza on a Cauliflower Crust
Meal 3:  Spinach Salad with Chicken and Roasted Vegetables
Meal 4:  Pasta with Turkey Sausage, Spinach, and Sundried Tomatoes
Meal 5:  Sweet Potato Hash with Turkey Sausage

Shopping List:
1 Large head of Cauliflower (meal 1, 2)
1 Red Pepper (meal 3, 5)
1 Medium Zucchini (meal 3, 5)
1 Yellow Onion (meal 4, 5)
1 Bulb of Garlic (all 5)
1 (450 gram) Package Turkey Sausage (meal 4, 5)
2 Chicken Breasts (meal 2, 3)
1 Box of Penne Pasta (meal 1, 4)
1- 28 oz. can of Diced Tomatoes (meal 1, 2)
1 Small Jar of Sundried Tomatoes in Oil (meal 2, 4, 5)
Kalamata Olives (meal 1, 2)
1 box Low-Sodium Chicken Broth (meal 4)
1 (300 gram) block of Mozzarella Cheese (meal 2)
1 bag baby spinach (meal 2, 3, 5)
2 medium sweet potatoes (meal 3,5)

My grocery store total was $33.  This included butter, because it was 50% off ($2.50).  However, the total did not include the chicken, which I had previously bought at Costco.  I estimate the cost of the chicken to be $6.  Though, in Canada if you buy it at the grocery store, it would more likely run you from $8-10.  Additionally, I already had a jar of olives.  I double checked the price on the olives, and they are $3.  So, my grand total was probably closer to $40 for the week.  Even if you have a more expensive grocery store, your grocery bill should still be under $50 for the week!!

The Everygirl, and I, also recommend some basic pantry staples.  For the recipes listed above you will also need:

Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar
Dijon Mustard
Dried Oregano
Chili powder
Red Pepper Flakes
Salt and Pepper


  1. I am impressed that you decided to do this. I would never think that I could feed 2 people for 5 days on $50. I will have to try doing this also!

  2. I feed all of us (4) for about $100 a week, 7 days. It's harder to do if you are doing organic and grass-fed. I decided right now since Im not working to concentrate on healthy,cheap choices. Plus, it sure helps to make everything from scratch. Love the idea Kelsey!

  3. I'm definitely going to give this a go! Love your blog. (Imagine my surprise at actually realising I real-life know you as well. Small world.)

    1. Haha yes, D told me you had been reading my blog! Let me know if you try the 5 under 50!

  4. I love this idea and am tempted to give it a go as well! I'm so curious about the Cauliflower crust pizza - I hope you post the recipe :)

  5. Hi, thanks for the list and recipes!! Just an FYI, spinach and sweet potatoes are missing from your grocery list.

  6. KandKTestKitchenJuly 8, 2013 at 8:46 AM

    Thanks for catching that Natalie!

  7. I got this to last for 2 weeks! Thank you so much! It really helps when you're on a college budget! p.s. I can't wait to try your other recipes!


We love and appreciate your feedback and questions. Thanks for dropping by and come again soon!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Blogging tips