I was challenged to expand my cheap healthy meal plan for Trim Healthy Mama (check out $7 dinners HERE and HERE) to include breakfasts and lunches, and I wanted to share the results with you! 21 meals (plus snacks) that fed my family of six for a week, and I spent under $100 at Kroger! I needed cheap dinners for 6, and I was able to do it! It comes close to $4.75 per meal, less if you count the snacks. These are some of my family’s favorites, and many of these are incredibly simple, throw-together meals. Best of all, these are gluten-free, sugar-free, and THM-compliant. Plus, I didn’t use any coupons or shop for deals. The only money-saving tip I used was to buy store brands whenever possible. But I wanted to see if I could get under $100 without spending time couponing, and without even using a Kroger card, and it was definitely possible. That means that many of you coupon experts could buy this same menu far cheaper than I did.
I know that lots of these items would be cheaper in bulk, so you may save some money there, too.
If you’re not familiar with Trim Healthy Mama (THM), it’s an amazing lifestyle change that helped me to lose over thirty pounds of stubborn baby weight in four months, and keep it off easily. If you don’t have the book, I highly recommend it! (Plus, I included a lot of THM recipes in this menu plan, so you’ll need it!) Please make sure you read the notes at the bottom of this post before you go to the store. You should have enough for at least two (if not more) of each breakfast and snack, but each recipe is only listed once on the printables, to show you what your options are. These recipes are from the original THM book, but you can find similar or copycat recipes on Pinterest if you only have the new books.
Click here to download the printable menu, cooking instructions, and shopping list: Download
I included my prices so you can see what I spent, but of course costs vary by location, so wherever you are in the US will determine if you get similar pricing or not. With the $7 menu, I had many people let me know that they shopped even cheaper than I did, so hopefully that will be the case for you, too!
This menu fed my family of two adults and four kids. If you have four teenage boys, or huge eaters, you will probably want to add more protein (eggs, chicken, beans, etc) and throw it in with each meal. I also found that the 2 pounds of rice lasted longer than the week, so my kids got a serving of rice when I was having S meals, making it into a crossover for them. The only recipe that calls for heavy cream is the frittata (with my substitution to keep it low carb), so I used the rest of the container in my coffee during the week.
Most of the meals are pretty simple, but here are the links and further instructions:
Iron Man Frittata from AllYou.com (substitute heavy cream for milk)
Pan-Roasted Lemon Chicken (use the chicken thighs for this recipe)
Stir-Fry – use leftovers from the pulled chicken, and you can use whatever veggies you have on hand, but I put zucchini and cabbage on the shopping list for vegetables. The step-by-stop process at this link is fantastic for making stir-fry. I made the soy-sesame sauce recipe, but omitted the cornstarch and subbed a pinch of stevia for sugar, and it was delicious. Feel free to use your favorite stir-fry recipe (or one from the book) instead of this one if it looks too time consuming, just make sure you add your different ingredients to the shopping list (and know that it will likely add up to more than $100).
This price does include butter but does NOT include other staples, so if you have bare cupboards and no spices you might need to spend a little more. But I did include the staples on the shopping list, so cross those off if you already have them. If you don’t, just be aware that anything under the “Staples” heading on the shopping list will add to your cost. I did NOT included glucomannan (which you can buy online from Trim Healthy Mama) on the shopping list, because it’s hard to find in stores, so I skip it in my Fat Stripping Frappas if I’ve run out.
That’s it! I hope this helps someone out! If you are able to coupon and save money on this list, I’d love to hear how you did it! Please comment with any tips you might have to make this even cheaper!
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