$70 Low Cost Menu for 4 to 6

My $45 menu has been so popular that I’ve taken a shot at another one. I tried to duplicate the $45 price tag, but it was just too hard. Instead I’ve developed a relatively low cost menu. This one has much more meat, a few more fruits and veggies and a greater variety. I hope this one will prove to be as popular as the first. If you need more information about packing lunches see Lunch Box Basics & Lunch Box Food. For even more information about this menu, to ask questions about it or to leave feedback, go to the Hillbilly Housewife Blog.

You may also want to take a look at the ebooks and resources provided by Living On A Dime – their ebooks are well worth the small fee they charge for all the money saving tips and ideas that you will get out of them. I usually make up the money I pay on the ebook within less than a week (often in one shopping trip) from purchase. Take a look and see for yourself at LivingOnADime.com.

Menus
PDF File (right click; save as)
Breakfast Lunch Dinner Snacks
Sunday Bacon; Eggs; Biscuits; Orange Juice; Milk; Hot Tea Meat Loaf; Instant Mashed Potatoes; Green Beans; Plain Muffins; Iced Tea Ramen Noodles; Thinly Sliced Veggies like Carrots & Onions; Iced Tea Leftover Muffins & Biscuits with Margarine & Jelly; Milk for children; Hot Tea for Adults
Monday Cornmeal Mush; Shredded Cheese; Margarine; Toast; Jelly; Orange Juice; Milk; Hot Tea Meat Loaf Sandwiches; Carrot Sticks; Ranch Dressing; Applesauce; Milk Boston Baked Beans; Macaroni & Cheese; Coleslaw; Fresh Bread, Margarine & Jelly; Iced Tea Cinnamon Toast; Milk for Children, Hot Tea for Adults
Tuesday French Toast; Syrup; Orange Juice; Milk; Hot Tea Beanie Wienies; Coleslaw; Butter or Jelly Bread or Cinnamon Toast; Milk Salmon Patties; Rice; Creamed Peas; Biscuits; Canned Pineapple; Iced Tea Garlic Bread Sticks; Milk for Children, Hot Tea for Adults
Wednesday Rice Pancakes; Syrup; Orange Juice; Milk; Hot Tea Egg Salad Sandwiches; Carrot Sticks; Ranch Dip; Applesauce; Milk Cowboy Beans & Rice; Steamed Carrots; Tender Cornmeal Muffins; Iced Tea Garlic Bread Sticks; Milk for Children, Hot Tea for Adults
Thursday Hot Rice Cereal; Toast; Margarine; Jelly; Milk; Hot Tea; Tuna Salad Sandwiches; Celery Sticks; Ranch Dip; Canned Peaches; Milk Simple Taco Meat with Homemade Tortillas; Shredded Cheese; Shredded Cabbage; Buttery Peas & Rice; Iced Tea Doodle Bugs; Applesauce; Milk for Children; Hot Tea for Adults
Friday Cornmeal Mush; Shredded Cheese; Orange Juice; Margarine; Toast; Jelly; Milk; Hot Tea Bacon & Egg Sandwiches; Canned Peaches; Carrot Sticks; Ranch Dip; Milk Hamburger Pinwheels; Macaroni & Cheese; Broccoli; Iced Tea Cinnamon Toast; Milk for Children; Hot Tea for Adults
Saturday Plain Pancakes; Syrup; Milk; Orange Juice; Hot Tea Ramen Noodles with Sliced Hotdogs & Veggies; Milk Red Beans & Rice; Cabbage Fried in Bacon Grease; Corn Bread; Iced Tea All the Good Leftovers

Shopping List

2009 Prices 2006 Prices Items
14.28
2.04
3.33
1.98
8.87
1.35
2.17
2.00
DAIRY
20 quarts (4 pounds) Instant Nonfat Dry Milk
3 pounds Margarine
3 Dozen Eggs (2.5 dozen in 2009)
8 ounces shredded Cheese
6.40
2.00
1.64
1.960.88
1.50
1.16
6.90
.97
.90
1.20
5.00
.89
1.19
.69
MEATS & PROTEIN
5 pounds ground beef
14 oz can Salmon
2 6 ounce cans Tuna
2 pounds Great Northern or Navy Beans
3 pounds Bacon Ends & Pieces
1 pound Hot Dogs
1 pound Pork or Turkey Sausage
1 pound Kidney Beans
0.92
0.92
2.68
0.56
1.92
0.69
1.86
3.04
1.87
2.00
1.23
1.50
1.00
1.00
1.00
2.00
.90
1.77
1.00
1.50
1.76
2.00
2.00
1.30
1.00
.69
FRUITS & VEGETABLES
1 pound Frozen Peas
1 pound Frozen Broccoli
2 pounds Instant Mashed Potatoes
2 – 15ounce cans Green Beans
3 pounds Cabbage
3 8-ounce cans tomato sauce
40 ounce jar Applesauce
2 12oz Frozen Orange Juice Concentrate
3 pounds onions
5 lbs carrots
1 Bunch Celery
29-ounce can Peaches
20-ounce can Pineapple
3.50
3.98
1.06
1.50
0.96
1.00
1.92
.88
1.33
.60
GRAINS & STARCHES
3 pounds Long Grain White Rice (5 lb in 2009)
10 pounds All-Purpose Flour
2 pounds plain cornmeal
4 boxes Macaroni & Cheese
6 packs Ramen Noodles
0.98
0.93
2.24
2.38
.77
.62
1.50
1.88
BAKING
Baking Powder
3 packets Yeast
12 ounces Molasses
5 pounds Sugar
1.88
1.57
1.48
0.52
0.96
1.82
0.98
0.82
0.50
0.50
0.50
0.50
0.50
1.00
1.00
1.00
.50
1.00
1.50
1.00
.50
.25
.50
.50
.50
.50
CONDIMENTS & SEASONINGS
Pancake Syrup
Ranch Dressing
Jelly
Yellow Mustard
Ketchup
Mayonnaise
Worcestershire Sauce
Hot Pepper Sauce
Salt
Black Pepper
Chili Powder
Garlic Powder
Cinnamon
1.84 1.00 MISCELLANEOUS
100 count Tagless Tea Bags
$89.26 $70.19 Total

NOTES

As with all of my recipes, I include plenty of milk for growing children and pregnant or nursing mothers. Orange Juice is served every morning but Thursday. On that day there are 2 other fruits served in addition to raw cabbage which is very rich in Vitamin C. The menu assumes 1/2-cup of orange juice for each person every day that it is served. This is a relatively small serving. To make it look like more you can add a couple of icecubes or some crushed ice to the cup. If you have a supply of small juice cups, now is the time to put them to use.

Since this menu is based on a limited number of ingredients, a few accommodations must be made.

  • All of the bread is homemade using the Overnight method.
  • All milk is reconstituted, and margarine is used instead of butter.
  • For the recipes that call for dried onion, substitute a small amount of finely chopped fresh onion.
  • For the recipes calling for fresh garlic, substitute a small amount of garlic powder instead.
  • In any recipe calling for shortening, use margarine instead.
  • In any recipe calling for oil, use melted margarine or liquid bacon grease instead. The flavor and texture will still be good. Plain muffins (Sunday) are especially good prepared with bacon grease.

Desserts haven’t been included in this menu, but if you’d like to have some, there are several listed under Miscellaneous in the Recipes below.

Daily Work

Saturday Night:

  • Mix up a pitcher of orange juice, a gallon of milk and a gallon of Tea. Put them into the fridge to chill.
  • Mix up the meatloaf and press it into the pan.
  • Prepare the kitchen for tomorrow and go to bed.

Sunday:

  • Wake up early and do your Sunday School Lesson.
  • Prepare a hearty breakfast for everyone and do up the dishes.
  • Go to church.
  • When you get home put the meatloaf into bake right away. Then change clothes and set the table.
  • Mix up the Muffins and put them into bake.
  • Prepare the mashed potatoes and boil the green beans. Serve the hungry family with a smile on your face.
  • Before going to bed prepare a batch of Overnight Bread and put it aside to rise.
  • Put 2 pounds of small white bean in water to cover and allow them to soak overnight.
  • Look over the beverages and prepare more as needed.

Monday:

  • Make Breakfast and pack the lunches.
  • After the breakfast dishes are done put shape the bread and allow it to rise. When it has doubled in bulk, bake it as directed.
  • Prepare the Baked Beans using 1 tablespoon of prepared yellow mustard instead of the dry mustard called for in the recipe.
  • After the beans have finished baking set aside 3 cups for supper on Wednesday night. Serve the rest for dinner tonight. Save any leftovers from tonight for lunch tomorrow.
  • Prepare the Cole Slaw using 4 cups of shredded cabbage and allow it to chill until dinner time. Half will be for dinner tonight and half for lunch tomorrow.
  • Look over the beverages and prepare more as needed.

Tuesday:

  • After making breakfast heat up any leftover baked beans with 5 or 6 sliced hot dogs. Slice the hot dogs thinly so they will go further. The remaining hot dogs will be used for lunch on Saturday. Simmer the beanie weenies for several minutes and then put them into pre-heated thermoses for lunch. Pack everything else with a cold pack to keep it cool and fresh until lunch.
  • Prepare the Garlic Bread Sticks. Set half of them aside for snack tomorrow, and serve the other half for snack today. They are very good.
  • When you make dinner prepare enough rice for dinner tonight and breakfast in the morning. 2-cups dry rice, cooked in 4-cups of water should be enough.
  • Before bed boil 4 to 6 eggs for tomorrow’s lunch.
  • Remember to check the milk and iced tea and prepare more as necessary.

Wednesday:

  • Make Rice Pancakes using the rice leftover from yesterday.
  • After serving breakfast make egg salad for lunch and pack the lunches with a cold pack.
  • Serve leftover garlic sticks for snack. They are good cold.
  • When you make dinner prepare enough rice for dinner tonight and breakfast in the morning. 2-cups dry rice, cooked in 4-cups of water should be enough.
  • Use the 3 cups of beans you set aside on Monday for supper tonight.
  • Prepare the dough for Overnight bread before going to bed.
  • Check the milk & iced tea supply, prepare more as necessary.

Thursday:

  • Prepare Hot Rice Cereal using rice leftover from yesterday.
  • Make Tuna Salad in the morning using two 6-ounce cans of tuna. Pack the lunches with a cold pack.
  • After you do the breakfast dishes divide the bread dough into 4 loaves and set aside to rise until doubled in bulk. Bake as directed.
  • Make up a batch of homemade tortillas for dinner tonight and put them in a plastic bag. Store them in the fridge until needed.
  • Prepare a batch of Doodle Bugs and chill until snack time. Check the milk & iced tea supply, prepare more as necessary.
  • To make the Simple Taco Meat fry up a pound of ground beef and use a fork to smash it into small bits. When it is brown drain off the fat. Add 2 tablespoons flour and stir until the meat is sort of dusty looking. Add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of chopped onion and 1/2 cup of water. Sprinkle in 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Simmer until thickened. Serve on homemade tortillas with a little bit of shredded cheese. Instead of lettuce, top the tortillas with finely shredded cabbage. It is very good. Almost better than lettuce in fact. Pass hot sauce at the table for them who like it spicy.
  • To make Buttery Peas & Rice prepare rice in the normal way using 1 cup of dry rice and 2 cups of water. Add 1/2-teaspoon salt, 2 tablespoons of margarine and 1 cup of frozen peas right before you put the lid on and simmer for 20 minutes.

Friday:

  • After breakfast fry up some bacon and eggs for lunches. Pop the yolks so they will be thoroughly cooked. Pack the lunches with a cold pack for freshness.
  • Before bed look over the beverage situation and prepare more as needed.
  • Also set a pound of kidney beans to soak overnight.

Saturday:

  • Prepare breakfast in the morning as directed.
  • Afterwards simmer the kidney beans for an hour and then proceed as directed. Chill until supper time.
  • To make the cabbage just slice it and fry it in bacon grease. Salt and pepper to taste.
  • Make the cornbread and reheat the beans at dinnertime.
  • Check the milk & iced tea supply, prepare more as necessary.
  • Clean up the kitchen and get it ready for the rest of the week.

Recipes

Breads & Cereals
Old-Fashioned Overnight Bread Biscuits (use margarine instead of shortening)
Homemade Tortillas Tender Cornmeal Muffins
Pancakes French Toast
Doodle Bugs Corn Bread
Rice Pancakes Hot Rice Cereal
Plain Cheap Muffins Cooked Rice
Cornmeal Mush Quick & Easy Garlic Bread Sticks
Main Dishes
Fred’s Favorite Meatloaf My Favorite Meatloaf
Hamburger Pinwheels Cow Girl Beans
Boston Baked Beans Rock Bottom Salmon Patties
Red Beans & Rice
Vegetables
Coleslaw
Miscellaneous
Short Bread Cookies Snickerdoodles
Quick Sugar Cookies Blondies
Homemade Brown Sugar
Perfect Iced Tea Reconstituting Milk

You may also want to take a look at the ebooks and resources provided by Living On A Dime – their ebooks are well worth the small fee they charge for all the money saving tips and ideas that you will get out of them. I usually make up the money I pay on the ebook within less than a week (often in one shopping trip) from purchase. Take a look and see for yourself at LivingOnADime.com.

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