Staying on Budget

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Extreme Menu 4 – Family of 2

Featured this week: Pork Chops Charcutire ~ ~ Pineapple Stir-Fry ~ ~ Healthy Hoppin' John

Andrew asked me to start a new segment of balanced meals but at a lower cost. I know some of you are paying down/off debt while trying to navigate the rising cost of food. I realize that there is not a lot of variety in these menus but the more grocery items I add the higher the bill. I will do my best to keep cost down while continuing with healthy well rounded dinners for your families.

Dinners for the week - About $36.08

  • Thursday
  • Friday
    • Leftover Healthy Hoppin’ John
    • Peas
  • Saturday
    • Leftover Healthy Hoppin’ John
    • Peas

**Note**

If the links above are not working the PDF version is below. Simply go to the day of the meal then expand the menu and click on the PDF link. 

Grocery List - Store brand (Metro Detroit)

Prep the week!

prep week

I like to gather my storage containers before I start my prep.  I love the look of the table with all of the containers and as I make progress, the containers disappear leaving me with a sense of accomplishment and encouragement to keep going. This picture is an example of one of my prep weeks.

Storage containers needed:

  • 1 cup; onion and shallots
  • 4 cup; onion, carrot, celery
  • ¼ cup; garlic
  • 2 cups; onion and carrots
  • 2.5 cups; green pepper and red pepper

Let’s start chopping!

  • Finely chop 1 small onion (1/2 cup) then place in a 1 cup container; set aside
  • Finely chop 4 shallots then place in 1 cup container with the onion; refrigerate
  • Dice one large onion (1 cup) then place in a 4 cup container; set aside
  • Slice 1 large onion (1.5 cups) then place in a 2 cup container; set aside
  • Peel and thinly slice 2 carrots then place in 2 cup container with the sliced onion; refrigerate
  • Peel and chop 2 carrots into 1 inch then slice carrot in half. Place in 4 cup container with onion; set aside.
  • Slice 2 celery ribs and leaves then place in 4 cup container with onion and carrot; refrigerate
  • Slice 1 green pepper and place in a 2.5 cup container; set aside
  • Slice 1 red pepper and place in a 2.5 cup container; set aside
  • Peel 2 garlic cloves and place in ¼ cup container; refrigerate

Tips and Tricks for the weekly meals to go flawlessly!

Always start by reading the recipe all the way through then read my tips.  Doing this before you start will help prevent “surprises” along the way. 

If I’ve posted it then I have eaten it and called it good.  Also, I know that the portions should work because I have done it.  No guess work here. Measuring out your portion might be new for you and still leave you hungry after the meal. This is normal and it will take your body time to adjust. Try these tips:

  • Don’t miss your afternoon snack because being ravenous at dinner time will lead to over eating. 
  • Drink 8 ounces of water before you begin your meal and after you end your meal. 
  • Eat a salad or raw vegetables with your meal.
  • Eat a piece of fruit after a meal like an apple, pear, orange, etc. This will subside the hunger and it’s good for you. 
  • Wait 1 hour after your meal and if you are still hungry make some pop corn.  
Equipment: 1 steamer pot and 1 fry pan with a lid; 30 minutes
Recipe Serves: 4          
Portion Size: 1 pork chop, 1 potato,  1/2 cup broccoli
Pork Chops Charcutiere Recipe_ How to Make It
  1. Gather all the ingredients
  2. Prep to cook:
    • Wash potatoes
    • Wash broccoli
    • Measure 1.5 cups of beef broth. Place the rest in a container in the refrigerator for a later use.
    • Chop 2 tablespoon of celery leaves
  3. Add potatoes to the steamer pot.
  4. Follow the recipe as directed.
  5. When the potatoes are fork tender remove and add broccoli to the pot for 4 minutes.
    • I like to add a little sauce over my potatoes. Enjoy!
**Be sure to set aside 2 pork chops, 2 potatoes and broccoli for Tuesday night’s dinner.
1 – Wok or deep frying pan and 1 pot for pasta; 30 minutes
Recipe Serves: 4          
Portion Size: Divide the dish into 4 equal parts
Pineapple Beef Stir-Fry

When portioning out this meal I line up 2 glass containers and 2 plates. I use a 1/2 cup measuring device and divide evenly. Enjoy! 

**Be sure to save 2 servings for Wednesday night’s dinner.
  1. Warm pork chop, sauce, potatoes and broccoli. Enjoy!

  1. Warm pineapple stir-fry. Enjoy!
Equipment: 1 – frying pan, pot for rice and 1 – pot for peas; 30 minutes
Recipe Serves: 6          
Portion Size: Divide 6 portions evenly
Healthy Hoppin’ John Recipe_ How to Make It
  1. Cook 1.5 cups of brown rice to package directions. It will yield 3 cups cooked.
  2. Gather all the ingredients
  3. Prep to cook:
    • Mince 2 garlic cloves and place in a small prep bowl; set aside
    • Chop 3 green onion and place in a bowl; set aside
    • Slice chicken sausage ½ inch and place in a small prep bowl; set aside
    • Measure 2 cups of chicken broth then leave in measuring cup; set aside
    • Measure spices and place in a small prep bowl; set aside
  4. Follow recipe as directed.
  5. In step 2 after the dish has been simmering for 10 minutes put on a pot of water to boil for the peas.
  6. Once pot is boiling add 6 cups of peas bring back to a boil and cook for 4 minutes.
  7. I like to gather 4 individual glass storage dishes and 2 plates and dish out the rice, peas, and sausage mixture evenly. Enjoy!
**Be sure to save 4 portions for dinner on Friday and Saturday.
  1. Warm rice, chicken sausage, and peas. Enjoy!
**Be sure to set aside 2 servings for dinner on Saturday.
  1. Warm rice, chicken sausage, and peas. Enjoy!

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Christin Lee

FULL TIME BUDGET BLOGGER

It is fun to think that there might be a short cut but the reality is planning plus diligence equals financial freedom.

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