It's the time of the week to start planning for next week's meals. SO much money can be saved by choosing to eat at home and by shopping for the specific meals that you plan.
This week, we'll be enjoying:
Sunday: Belgian Waffles (I'll be using a mix-I won't lie!) and strawberries
Monday: Grilled Chicken & Pinto Bean Burritos & Fresh fruit
Tuesday: Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches & Fresh fruit
Wednesday: Layered Spaghetti Squash with Spaghetti Sauce and Salad
Thursday: Cashew Chicken in lettuce cups with brown rice
Friday: Leftovers, I'm sure!
Monday's burritos don't get much easier; for the two of us, I slice a grilled chicken breast and mix it with some pinto beans, and add the rest of the necessities like lettuce, salsa, cheese and sour cream onto a tortilla and wrap it up. Simple and delicioso! (If you follow my menus, just pop those leftover tortillas in the freezer because we'll be making chicken enchiladas next week!)
The buffalo chicken sandwiches are just a grilled piece of chicken dipped in Frank's Red Hot Buffalo Wing Sauce, sandwiched on a keiser roll with a piece of lettuce and a tablespoon of ranch dressing. It's quick and oh-so-satisfying! (I know, I know, it's awesome when the chicken is fried, but for health reasons the grilling is a better alternative!)
The layered spaghetti squash with spaghetti sauce is something that my mother-in-law makes that I adore. You start by halving a spaghetti squash. Drizzle each half with a little olive oil and liberally sprinkle with salt and pepper, then roast the squash cut sides down (375 for 30-45 minutes or until easily pierced by a knife).
While the squash is roasting, make a batch of your favorite spaghetti sauce. You'll need to yield about 3 cups (one jar of sauce will suffice, and I like to add about 1/2 lb. ground beef).
When the squash has cooled for about 15-20 minutes, use a fork to pull the "spaghetti" strands away from the hard outer skin. Divide into two equal portions.
Spray a 2 quart casserole dish with a non-stick spray. Place half of the squash down in the dish, covering the bottom. Cover with about 1.5 cups of spaghetti sauce. Sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella (or get fresh mozzarella and slice it and place the slices all over the sauce.) Top with remaining squash then add another layer of sauce and cheese. Bake (covered) at 375 for 25-30 minutes. What a yummy meal!
I will try to do another cost analysis of a meal this week as I did with last week's pork chop meal. It's important to know how much we are spending/saving in order to make the best financial choices. Analyzing the cost of a meal is an encouraging reason to eat at home and prepare your own food.