Lesson of the Day: $120 Goes a Long Way…


Food is a major issue in our house. This is mostly because we’ve spent the last year trying to come up with foods that the oldest boy would eat in a reasonable time, although recently, the toddler has been proving difficult to feed as well. We’ve finally hit on a few things that they will eat and I’m in the process of setting up a two or three week dinner schedule to get me organized. In the meantime, we were down to next to no meat in our freezer and needed to restock. We had managed to go months with only buying the occasional package of hamburger, or easy to cook beef for stir-fry while using up our stock, but it was time for a Costco run.

This is by no means a Costco advertizement, but I do advocate buying bulk – or at the bare minimum – picking stuff up when it’s on sale. We find that a single pack can do several meals so we divide them up when we get home. Some of the family size packages from other grocery stores are great for this as well.

I went in with a budget of “have enough left over to buy Ian a birthday present.” The one thing I miss the most about working is the paycheque – maternity benefits just don’t live up to a real income. I ended up spending about $120 on meat and walked out with what I consider a decent amount, or as Ian kept mentioning as he took it all down to the freezer, “a lot of meat.” I only got one package of each of the following:

  • roasting chickens (pk of 3 for 6-9 meals)
  • sirloin tip roast (pk of 3 for 6-9 meals)
  • lean hamburger (2.4kg quartered for 4+ meals)
  • breakfast sausages (45 total – 3pk of 10 for the whole family and 3pk of 5 for the kiddo and I for lunches)
  • boneless chicken thighs (28 total grouped as 4s and 5s for 6 meals served cut up)
  • bone-in chicken thighs (21 total in 3pk of 7 for 3 meals)

The beauty of it is all that meat will do at least 28  meals for about $4.30 a meal or less and I won’t have to buy more until September…except for beef for stir-frying and more hamburger.



Filed under In the Kitchen, Lesson of the Day

4 responses to “Lesson of the Day: $120 Goes a Long Way…

  1. Meat is the most expensive thing for us to, mostly because my weight loss diet means I need lots of boneless skinless chicken breasts, major bucks. I also only use lean or extra lean ground beef, which is more expensive. It’s guaranteed our weekly grocery bill will go up at least fifty bucks if we need much meat. Although we do have a few butchers around that I could probably get a nice freezer order from I don’t find their quality the greatest.

    • It’ll get worse when the little guy gets older! This is the curse of having boys. My aunt had two sons and couldn’t keep food in the house between the two of them. I really don’t know how she managed to keep enough food around to feed two hungry teenage boys.

      I’m right with you on the extra lean ground beef. Unfortunately, Costco doesn’t carry it so we’ll have to pick some up elsewhere. Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are one of my favourites, but a package of those would have added another $25 to the bill so I went with the thighs for now since all the boys prefer dark meat. I sometimes grab those at M&M when they have the box for $15.99.

  2. New Mommy Life

    I have tons of recipes (checks recipie box) or at least I used to have tons of recipes that used chicken thighs. Would you like a few if I find them again? If you have some yummy ones for me send them along. It’d be great to have a few more healthy recipies that don’t use the most epensive cuts of meat. Also, you can find great recipies through Taste of Home, my fave magazine and website for great food ideas.

    • Sure, I could always use a recipe or two. I’m horrible when it comes to that. I tend to just throw stuff together, add garlic, and hope for the best. Granted, almost everything we make is child friendly these days so it doesn’t need to be fancy. When it comes to chicken, I do rice, stir fry, and put it in a cream sauce to either go over pasta or in puff pastries.

      I’ve got a few issues of Taste of Home (the slow cooker one is awesome) and must agree that it’s got great stuff in it. I’ve even managed to get the boys to eat some of it.

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