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Category: $35 to $60 Menus

We spent $69.60 on groceries this week (+ our dinner menu)

Want to see what we bought for this week’s $70 grocery budget? I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

Hospitality on a Budget

We hosted a 10-year-old girl from foster care all week this week while her foster mom was out of town. We also hosted the group of 8th grade girls small group from youth group I help co-lead for a fun evening, complete with ice cream sundaes.

People often ask me how we manage to open our home and be hospitable on a budget. One thing that helps us be able to keep our budget down is by buying ahead when items are on their lowest prices.

For instance, in the photos below, you’ll see that I stocked up on butter, sugar, smoked sausage, ice cream, potatoes, and frozen pizza this week. We only used two of the tubs of ice cream for ice cream sundaes, so I’ll save the rest for when we have guests over next. And I like to always have 3-5 frozen pizzas in the freezer for a last-minute meal if the kids have their friends over or we have guests at the last minute.

Every week, if possible, I stock up on a few things that work for quick hospitality. That way, we almost always have a variety of things on hand to work with and opening our home doesn’t mean that we have to run to the store to buy a bunch of items.

Ice Cream Sundae Bar

One simple and inexpensive way to feed people on a smaller budget is to do dessert instead of a full meal. For the ice cream sundae bar, we already had some chocolate chips, cookies (I crushed some of these up to sprinkle on top of ice cream), and sprinkles on hand that I had gotten on other sales/deals. And then Kroger had ice cream on sale for $1.79/tub when you bought 5 participating items.

I set these items out and some of the girls brought other things — like whipped topping, M&Ms, and chocolate syrup. All in all, we had a really fantastic ice cream sundae bar… and we still stayed within our grocery budget!

For more ideas, check out my post on How to Practice Hospitality on a Budget. Also, check out my 5 Simple Ideas for Hospitality on a Budget here.

ALDI Shopping Trip

  • Orange Juice — $1.99
  • Bananas — $1.40
  • Honey Nut Crispy Oats — $2.45
  • Rice Squares — $1.49
  • Frosted Flakes — $1.39
  • Honey Crunch N Oats — $1.29
  • 3 blocks of cheese — $1.69 each
  • Baby carrots — $0.89
  • 2 cucumbers — $0.55 each
  • Oranges — $1.99
  • 10-lb. bag potatoes — $2.49
  • 6-lb. bag of Cane Sugar — $3.49
  • Strawberries — $1.79
  • Total with tax: $29.79

New to shopping at ALDI? Check out my 25 Favorite Things to Buy at ALDI and 5 Things You Should Not Buy at ALDI.

Kroger Shopping Trip #1:

  • Milk — $2.89
  • Fruit Snacks (I bought these for the girl who was staying with us as we discovered she loved to take these for her morning snack at school.) — $2.50
  • 4 tubs Kroger Ice Cream — $1.79 each when you buy 5 participating items
  • 1 tub Turkey Hill Ice Cream — $2.49 when you buy 5 participating items
  • Foam Bowls — $1.89
  • Total with tax: $18.05

Kroger Shopping Trip #2:

Total Spent — $69.60

Cashback earned this week: 1575 points from Fetch + $1 back from iBotta for scanning my receipt

Dinners This Week

  • Monday: Pumpkin Waffles, Bacon, Scrambled Eggs, Orange Juice
  • Tuesday: Lettuce Salad, Fruit Salad, Southwest Rollups
  • Wednesday: Italian Chicken, leftover Fruit Salad, Peas, Mashed Potatoes
  • Thursday: Shepherd’s Pie, Lettuce Salad, Oranges
  • Friday: Out for Chinese Food (the girl staying with us had a birthday this week so we had her choose where she wanted to go to dinner and she chose Chinese!)
  • Saturday: Leftovers
  • Sunday: Super Bowl Snacks — Refried Bean Dip, Homemade Guac, Chips/Salsa, Popcorn, Apples, Carrots, Leftovers

This Week’s $60 ALDI and Kroger Shopping Trips (+ a different way of grocery shopping!)

Want to see what we bought for this week’s $70 grocery budget? I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

We’ve been using the Eat at Home Menu Plan service this week for our meals this past week. I wanted to demonstrate a different way to shop and cook for those who want to stick with a budget but don’t have time to go to multiple stores each week or shop markdowns/sales.

The Eat at Home Menu Plan service only goes on sale twice a year and it’s on sale through Tuesday at midnight for 30% off with coupon code HOME. You can get the annual plan for just $1.13/week with this code — and the code locks in the 30% off rate for the rest of your subscription!

We love this menu plan service and have personally found it to be super helpful during really full seasons of life. Check it out here.

I saw these Tearless Onions at Aldi last week. Have you purchased these before?? I’d never heard of them. Do they actually work and not make you cry when you cut an onion??

Aldi Shopping Trip — $42.75

Kroger Shopping Trip — $17.04

Dinners This Week

  • Sunday — marked down rotisserie chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans
  • Monday  —  grapefruit, Pumpkin Waffles, bacon
  • Tuesday — oranges, Broccoli Cheese Egg Casserole, Banana Muffins
  • Wednesday —  Slow Cooker Italian Chicken/Potatoes, Banana Muffins, green beans
  • Thursday — Slow Cooker Chicken a la King, Biscuits
  • Friday — Dinner out since Kathrynne had an out of town basketball game
  • Saturday — The kids had leftovers, Jesse and I went out with friends
  • Sunday —  Slow Cooker Cheeseburgers, Sweet Potato Fries

This past week’s $65 grocery budget purchases + our dinner menu

Want to see what we bought for this week’s $70 grocery budget? I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.


I loved finding great deals on eggs, dried cranberries, and avocados this past week. I’ve been making some yummy salads this week as a result!

I couldn’t believe all of these markdowns I found at Kroger. Ended up only getting the dried cranberries and some trail mix as those were the best deals.

Kroger Shopping Trip #1:

Kroger Shopping Trip #2:

  • Chobani Smoothies — marked down to $1.49
  • 2 Caramel Mousse — marked down to $0.99 each
  • 4 boxes of Zatarain’s rice — marked down to $0.59 each
  • 2 cans of pumpkin — $1 each
  • 5 bags of frozen veggies — $1 each
  • Bananas — marked down to $0.90
  • 2 bags of barley — marked down to $0.84 each
  • 4 lbs of sweet potatoes — $0.49/lb.
  • Total with tax: $17.39

Butter was on sale this weekend as part of Kroger’s weekend deals and I was thrilled to be able to stock the freezer again!!

Kroger Shopping Trip #3:

  • 5 lbs. butter — $1.99 each this weekend
  • Dannon yogurt smoothies — marked down to $0.49 each
  • 3 dozen Simple Truth eggs — marked down to $1.39 each
  • Simple Truth cage-free eggs containers — marked down to $1.19
  • 2 containers Siggi’s Skyr — marked down to $0.39 each
  • Whole Grain bread — marked down to $2.29
  • 2 containers organic blueberries/sweet potatoes/apples — marked down to $0.39 (we are going to use this instead of apple butter in Apple Butter Muffins)
  • 3-lb bag of clementines — $2.99
  • 10-lb bag of potatoes — $1.99
  • Takis — $2.89 (Kathrynne was with me and I let her decide how to spend the extra money in the budget so she bought these and gelatin.)
  • 3 packages gelatin — $0.39 each
  • Total with tax: $30.48

Dinners This Past Week

This Week’s $70 Grocery Budget + What We Ate For Dinner

Want to see what we bought for this week’s $70 grocery budget? I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

I was excited about the deals we found this week and we ate some really yummy food!

Kroger Shopping Trip #1

Some of the apples in the markdown bag above were Granny Smith, which none of us are fond of eating raw. So I made Cinnamon Apples in the Instant Pot with them.

These were a HUGE hit with the kids and they ate them up in just a few minutes. Next time, I definitely need to double the recipe!

I was so excited about a few of the Weekend Deals at Kroger — especially the cheese deal!

Kroger Shopping Trip #2:

  • La Croix — $1.99 per 8-pack with Friday-Sunday deals
  • Classico Pasta Sauce — $0.99 each with Friday-Sunday deals
  • 5 Simple Truth Greek yogurts — marked down to $0.49 each
  • 2 bags of Quaker Rice Snacks — $0.99 when you buy 10 participating items
  • 3 boxes Swiss Miss — $0.99 when you buy 10 participating items
  • 5 bags/packages Kroger cheese — $1.29 with Friday-Sunday deals
  • 2 containers cottage cheese — $1.49 each when you buy 10 participating items
  • Coconut sugar — marked down to $0.99
  • 3 boxes pasta — $0.49 each when you buy 10 participating items
  • 1 box pasta — marked down to $0.39
  • Taco Kit — marked down to $0.99
  • Half & Half — $1.49
  • 5 cans Green Giant veggies — $0.49 each when you buy 10 participating items
  • Grapes — $0.99/lb.
  • 2 packages meat — marked down to $2.50 each
  • Milk — $2.79
  • Honeycrisp apples — 3 lb. bag for $2.99
  • 4 cans Swanson broth — $0.49 each when buy 10 participating items
  • Total with tax: $48.34

Dinners From This Past Week

What did you eat at your house this week? Any winner frugal recipes you tried that you think we should try?

Last Week’s $70 Grocery Budget + Menu Plan

Want to see what we bought for this week’s $70 grocery budget? I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

I’ve been finding a LOT of random markdowns at Kroger recently, so my shopping trips this week were mostly made up of those!

Kroger Shopping Trip #1

  • Kroger Eggs — marked down to $1.29
  • Cinnamon Raisin Bread — marked down to $1.29
  • 2 cans of canned Pineapple — marked down to $0.49 each
  • JIF peanut butter — marked down to $0.99 each
  • Kettle cooked chips — marked down to $0.79
  • Kroger sour cream — $1.39
  • Deli chicken — marked down to $2.39
  • Elbow macaroni — marked down to $0.39
  • 1 bag of peppers/squash — marked down to $0.99
  • Kroger peanuts — marked down to $0.89
  • Sirloin Steak — marked down to $4.40
  • 1 bag of cucumbers — marked down to $0.99
  • Strawberries — $1.50
  • 2 cans of Kroger soup — $0.79 each
  • 1 bag of lemons — marked down to $0.99
  • Bananas — marked down to $0.39/lb. = $0.71
  • Tyson Frozen Chicken — $6.99
  • 2 cans of salmon — marked down to $1.99 each
  • Package of Kind Breakfast Bars — marked down to $0.99
  • 2 cans of green beans — marked down to $0.29 each
  • Simple Truth organic seltzer water — marked down to $0.99 each
  • 2 boxes of Rice-a-Roni — marked down to $0.49 each
  • Kroger taco seasoning — marked down to $0.19
  • Total with tax: $41.96

I was excited about the Weekend Deals at Kroger this week and am going back to hit some of the others on Monday!

Kroger Shopping Trip #2

  • Salad Kit — $1.99
  • Nature Valley Granola Bar — marked down to $0.69
  • Kroger eggs — marked down to $1.29
  • Annie’s Mac & Cheese — marked down to $0.59 each
  • Capri Sun — marked down to $0.69
  • JIF Peanut Butter — marked down to $0.89
  • 3 packages of Smithfield Bacon — $2.99 each with Weekend Deals
  • Kind bar — Free with Free Friday coupon
  • Creamed Corn — $0.99
  • Kroger Green Beans — $0.59
  • 5 Lara Bars — $0.50 each with Weekend Deals
  • Franks Red Hot Sauce — Well, I thought this was supposed to be $0.99 with the Kroger Weekend Deals but as I was typing this up, I realized that I think I actually paid $2.99 for this!! Now I’m trying to decide whether it’s worth taking back to the store. Probably not? But I kind of surprised that I didn’t catch that I overpaid for this. 🙁 I usually am really good at carefully checking everything. Here’s another good reason why you should check your receipt really thoroughly before leaving the store!
  • Lettuce — $1.79
  • Total with tax: $26.18

What We Ate This Past Week

Note: When you see the meals below, please remember this: I buy ahead often. Which means that when I find a great deal on something I know we’ll use, I buy as much as I can afford in our budget to have on hand.

This means that you aren’t going to see all of the groceries my shopping trip that I used to make all of the meals we ate.

Please also remember that I’m putting this out there and it’s not a perfectly balanced menu. This is just really what we ate — and I hope that it encourages you to see the real-ness and lack of perfection here.

Breakfasts:

  • Cereal, Toast, Oatmeal, Peanut Butter & Honey Sandwiches (Silas and Kaitlynn have been loving this for breakfast recently!), Eggs

Lunches:

  • Ham Sandwiches, Granola Bars, Yogurt, Capri Sun, Salad, Leftovers, Fruit

Snacks:

  • Cookies, Popcorn, Ice Cream, Go-Gurts, Apple Crisp, Fruit, Veggies

Dinners:

Total spent on groceries: $68.14

Cashback earned this week: 50 points for submitting my receipts to Fetch rewards

This Week’s $70 Grocery Budget (+ our menu plan!)

I’m currently challenging myself to stick with a $70 budget for our family of five. This includes almost all of our breakfasts, lunches, snacks, and dinners + most household products (toiletries, laundry soap, etc.).

For live updates, be sure to follow my Instagram Stories. See all posts on my $70 Grocery Budget here.

Note: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and we will be compensated if you click through and sign up. Read our disclosure policy here.

I was excited about the Buy 5, Get $5 Off Sale that Kroger was running this week! Barbecue Sauce for $0.49 — no coupon needed? Sign me up!

I was sad to find that my store was completely sold out of the Pancake Mix that was on sale for just $0.99. But I still have three boxes of pancake mix that I got on sale/marked down, so I can totally wait for another sale!

Here’s what I got at Kroger on Tuesday (I especially excited to finally find another markdown on eggs again!):

Kroger Shopping Trip #1:

  • Chex cereal — marked down to $0.69
  • 5 dozen cage-free brown eggs — marked down to $0.99 each
  • 2 Moose Tracks yogurt — marked down to $0.25 each
  • 2 Simple Truth yogurts — marked down to $0.49 each
  • Simple Truth Organic Maple Syrup — $3.99, used $1/1 Kroger digital coupon = $2.99
  • 2 boxes Kroger Raisin Bran — $1.49 each
  • Hillshire Farm ham — marked down to $2.19
  • Hillshire Farm brats — marked down to $1.49 each
  • 3 Bountiful Salad Kits — marked down to $1 each
  • 2 pounds Private Selection Ground Beef — marked down to $3.79 each
  • 1 bag of onions — marked down to $0.99
  • Vitamin D milk — $2.69
  • Huggies baby wipes — $0.99 when you buy 5 participating items, used $0.50/1 Kroger digital coupon = $0.49
  • 2 bottles Kraft barbecue sauce — $0.49 each when you buy 5 participating items
  • Suave Kids’ Shampoo — $1.99 each when you buy 5 participating items, used $1/1 Kroger digital coupon = $0.99
  • 2 Speedstick deodorant — $0.99 each when you buy 5 participating items
  • Sara Lee whole wheat bread — $1.49 when you buy 5 participating items
  • Tropicana Probiotic — marked down to $1.29
  • Bear Naked Granola — $2.49 when you buy 5 participating items, used $3/1 Kroger digital coupon = free after coupon
  • Stayfree pads — $1.99 when you buy 5 participating items, used $2/2 Kroger digital coupon = $0.99 after coupon
  • Total with tax: $44.06

cookies

Need an end of year Teacher Gift? Here’s a great idea!

Asheritah wrote in and said: “I made your chocolate chip cookies today for my preschooler to take to school. They’re DELICIOUS! I feel like I’m #winning at this mom thing… at least for a nanosecond out of my day.” (By the way, here’s the free label she used.)

a photo of Aldi

Did you see my post on 5 Things You Should NOT Buy at Aldi?

By the way, the marked down Lentil Salad I got above was kind of blah and I wouldn’t buy it again.

I was super stoked that Kroger had a weekend sale on butter! We had just ran out of the butter I bought in the last sale!

Did you get your free Core Hydration Water at Kroger?

Kroger Shopping Trip #2:

family fun at Sonic

We kicked off 100 Days of Summer Fun on Saturday with walking to Sonic. Our goal is to do some simple family fun activity every day for the next 100 days.

If you want to join us, you can follow along with my Instagram stories where I’ll be documenting what we do each day.

(And if you want to join us, I’d love for you to share your family fun on Instagram or Facebook and tag me (@themoneysavingmom) and use the hashtag #100DaysofSummerFun.)

What We Ate This Past Week

Note: When you see the meals below, please remember this: I buy ahead often. Which means that when I find a great deal on something I know we’ll use, I buy as much as I can afford in our budget to have on hand.

This means that you aren’t going to see all of the groceries my shopping trip that I used to make all of the meals we ate.

Please also remember that I’m putting this out there and it’s not a perfectly balanced menu. This is just really what we ate — and I hope that it encourages you to see the real-ness and lack of perfection here.

Our Menu Plan

Breakfasts:

  • Cereal, Oatmeal, Scrambled Eggs, Toast

Lunches:

  • Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwiches, Carrots, Oranges, Salads, Leftovers, Cookies

Snacks:

  • Fruit, Peppers, Popcorn, Ice Cream, Hard Boiled Eggs

Dinners:

  • Sunday — Leftover ziti, Bread Machine Buttery Rolls, salad, peas
  • Monday — Leftovers (We apparently made way too much for when we had guests over on Saturday night! Hey, at least it meant I got two nights off from cooking!)
  • Tuesday — Corn bread, ground beef with tomatoes and onions, fruit
  • Wednesday — Leftover corn bread with chili and cheese
  • Thursday — KFC
  • Friday — Breakfast for dinner: pancakes, sausage, fruit
  • Saturday — Leftover pancakes and sausage, frozen pizza + we walked to Sonic and the kids got drinks and chili dogs

Grocery Budget Totals

Total spent on groceries: $68.13

Cashback earned this week: 136 points for submitting my receipts to Fetch rewards + $0.20 for submitting my receipt to iBotta rewards.