We Spent $1.20/Meal & No Menu Planning
We tested the Healthy Meal Planning Bundle: How much does it cost in groceries to follow the meal plan? The results confirmed my suspicions.
This post contains affiliate links, which means we receive a small compensation if you make a purchase using the links. You can view our full disclosure policy here.
Last week, I told you about the Healthy Meal Planning Bundle. After researching the Meal Plans (over 52-weeks’ worth of real food), calculating the cost (works out to about ~3/month for the year), and looking at the different meal plan themes (Ketogenic, Budget-Friendly, Gluten-free, Instant Pot, Busy Moms, etc.), I decided it was a really good buy.
If you struggle with planning meals, sticking to a real food diet, or are trying something new this year (Keto, Instant Pot, etc.), the bundle sets you up for success.
However, I wanted to try one more thing. The meals looked fairly doable on a budget, but were they really?
So I tested it myself. I plan to use the meal plans for our family anyway. But this week, I kept track of all the numbers so I could share them with you.
Which Meal Plan Did We Choose?
We decided to use the One Pot Dinner Meal Plan. It was 4-weeks of one-pot dinners and included a shopping list for each week and cheat sheet that tells you what to prep the day or morning before (thaw meat, etc.).
I liked the Instant Pot meal plan and Busy Moms meal plan. But we don’t have a lot of go-to One Pot dinners, and I wanted to build our collection without getting trapped in the Pinterest vortex.
The fact these come with a grocery list too makes it an instant winner in my opinion.
But do the meals in the Meal Plan cost more than what we usually spend?
I won’t try to tell you to try this real food menu plan if it will end up killing your budget.
That’s why I didn’t use the Budget-Friendly Meal Plan (although it looked great!). I needed to know that I could use any of these plans and still save money.
On Our Meal Plan This Week:
- Slow Cooker Cabbage Rolls
- Bean Burrito Bake
- Creamy Chicken Korma
- Sausage, Lentil and Rice Skillet Meal
- South African Chakalaka
- Sriracha Beef and Vegetable Rice Bowls Italian Chicken Skillet
I had to go to 3 stores this week anyway. But I could have found the ingredients for these meals at any good grocery store (Kroger, Walmart, etc.).
After scanning the grocery list, I marked everything I would need to buy at the store. We had most of the spices, pantry staples, and some chicken breast. I also substituted some ingredients with what I already had – like using ground ginger and garlic instead of fresh.
How Much We Spent:
- Sprouts – $5
- Aldi – $34
- Kroger – $3
Total for One Pot dinners for a week (with extras – like the 4.5 lbs of carrots and extra ground beef) = $42
If this feeds our 5 people 7 dinners, that works out to $6/dinner, or $1.20/person.
Of course, this isn’t an exact science. One of the dinners (South African Chakalaka) actually lasted for 3 nights. But since we usually add
If you are spending more than $1.20/person for dinners, there’s a good chance these meal plans will help you save money and eat
And let’s not forget the sheer convenience of not needing to menu plan or find real food meals to try in the New Year. Sunday mornings, I usually menu plan. But between the Better Breakfasts Bootcamp & Healthy Menu Planning, I was HOME FREEEEEE.
So I got to journal a little more and read before the kids got up instead. It was great.
The Healthy Meal Planning Bundle I
- Nutritional info for every recipe
- All your recipes in one convenient place (with an index, too!)
- Done-for-you meal plans so you’ll know exactly what to buy
If you want to save money and your sanity, all while serving healthier meals
Still feeling unsure? I love their 30-day happiness guarantee. Their customer service is great, and it means there is really no risk in trying it out.