Thursday, February 3, 2011

Menu Planning with the MARTIN’S Ad

Menu planning and saving money really can go hand-in-hand.  It is important to realize that you can still enjoy some of your family’s favorite meals by menu planning with a sales flyer, you just need to be flexible. 

I am including a few more Super Bowl Menu items this week in addition to four meals for the week.  I have found that I really only cook on average four meals a week and that we end up having at least one left-over night, one meal out, and something easy like homemade pizza.

Super Bowl Party:

Buffalo Chicken Dip:

This looks like a great recipe for making your own Buffalo Chicken Dip.  I don’t see any canned chicken on sale, (I personally don’t care for canned chicken).  If you don’t already have some chicken breast in your freezer you could pick up some Split Chicken Breast ($1.69/lb) and cook them yourself* (20oz of meat is about 3 large chicken breast).  You can pick-up Philadelphia Cream Cheese, Kraft Shredded Cheese, and Ritz Crackers as part of the buy $20 and save $7 promotion.  The Frank’s Red Hot is only $0.50 when you use the $0.50/1 coupon in the 1/23 SmartSource insert.

*I rinse the chicken breast off and rub a little bit of oil and sprinkle them with salt and pepper before baking them at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes depending on their size.  I let them cool then I remove and discard the skin, and pull the meat from the bones.  Save any meat you don’t use for the dip because it will make yummy chicken salad, or you can freeze it for soup.  I also save my bones to make my own chicken broth in my slow-cooker.

Brown Sugar Smokies:

These sound really good and look really easy to make.  The Hillshire Farm Little Wieners or Smokies are on sale for 50% off and if you buy 2 you can use the $0.75/2 coupon in the 1/23 RedPlum Insert.  You can use the GIANT bacon that is on sale for $3.33/lb. 

Fantastic Mexican Dip:

I love this dip and I have made it several times.  It really makes a lot and because of all of the meat it is really filling.  I personally start off with a layer of refried beans (Old El Paso are on sale for $1 a can) and then you can adjust the toppings to whatever suits your group.  It is also really easy to make up to the point of adding the meat, then I put it in the refrigerator and add the rest of the toppings just before serving.  You can buy the ground beef on sale ($2.49/lb), and buy the cream cheese, sour cream, and shredded cheese as part of the buy $20 and save $7 promotion.  The taco seasoning is also on sale for $0.67. 

Quick Things:

You don’t have to be a gourmet chef and make everything from scratch when you are having people over.   You can easily have some heat and serve appetizers or easy things like chips and dip.   Some ideas would be the El Monterey Taquitos, Mini Chimichangas, or Chicken and Cheese Quesadillas.  (On sale for $4.99 and use the $1/1 coupon in the 1/30 SmartSource insert.)  The Heluva Good Dip is only $0.50 this week when you use the $0.55/1 coupon in the 1/23 SmartSource insert.  Utz Potato Chips are 50% off.  Doritos are 50% off, Chi-Chi’s Salsa is $0.50 when you use the $0.50/1 coupon in the 1/16 SmartSource insert.  Microwave popcorn can even fill up an empty snack bowl – Orville Redenbacher’s 6-pack is only $2 if you have the $1/1 coupon from the December 2010 or January 2011 issue of All You Magazine. 

Weeknight Meals:

Pierogies & Sausage:

Mrs. T’s Pierogies are only a $1 a box after the $1/1 coupon in the 1/30 RedPlum insert they are only a $1 a box after the coupon.  I generally boil my pierogies and then saute some onions in butter to put over them and top it off with sour cream.  I thought a really yummy and filling twist would be to serve it with the GIANT Italian Style Sausage that is on sale for $1.99/lb or the Hillshire Farm Polska Kielbasa that is 50% off (buy 2 and use the $0.75/2 coupon in the 1/23 RedPlum insert).  You can make it a complete meal with a bag of the GIANT SteamReady Vegetables.


Asian Style Pork Chops with Rice Pilaf:

I came across this recipe and was impressed with how many ingredients are on sale this week.  You can pick-up the Lipton Recipe Secrets are $1.25, the fresh center cut bone-in pork chops are $1.99/lb, and the Knorr Rice Sides are $0.50 each when you buy 2 and use the $0.50/2 coupon in the 1/30 RedPlum insert.  (I haven’t actually tried this recipe so if you do let me know how it turns out.) :)  Finish off the meal with either a salad or a bag of the GIANT SteamReady Vegetables.


Salmon Dill Packets:

This is a really simple and easy way to fix salmon.  Take either a square of heavy-duty aluminum foil or use two pieces of aluminum foil, spray it with some non-stick cooking spray, and place a GIANT Fresh Salmon Portion (that are on sale for $4.49 each) on the foil.  Take about 2 Tablespoons of prepared dill dip (the T. Marzetti Vegetable Dip is on sale for $3.49 and use the $0.75/1 coupon in the 1/30 SmartSource insert) and spread it over the salmon fillet.  Make the aluminum foil into a packet and place it on a baking sheet.  Bake for about 20-30 minutes or until the fish is firm and flakes with a fork.   Serve with a bag of GIANT SteamReady Vegetables and rice.

Taco Night:

This is something that is easy to pull together rather quickly and everyone has fun adding their own toppings.  You can use some of the Lean Ground Beef that is on sale in the value pack size for $2.49/lb (put the rest of it in individual freezer bags and freeze in portions your family eats).  The Old El Paso Dinner Kit is on sale for $2.35 – it has the seasoning, sauce, and shells or tortillas all together.  This is another opportunity to purchase sour cream and cheese from the buy $20 and save $7 promotion


Let me know if you try any of these recipes and how they turn out.  I would love it if you wanted to share any of your recipes.  I love trying out new recipes!



Jessica said...

Hi Ann!

Just wanted to share my totals for today's Martins trip.
Total before savings: $69.42
Total after bonuscard savings & coupons: $18. 62!!!

My kraft $7 off $20 deal worked out to $5.74! 6 bags of cheese (I found pkgs that had 20% more FREE at my store that were included in the deal, yay!!), 4 cream cheese, 1 sour cream, and 1 american sliced individually wrapped cheese

Thank you for your blog, I enjoy comparing my list to yours, and finding deals on items & scenarios that I missed.

Ann said...

Great job Jessica! I figured that you saved about 70%! Did you also use the 5% that you got e-mailed to you?

I am glad to hear that you find my post helpful. Please feel free to continue to contribute any deals that you find that I missed.

Jessica said...

I did use the 5% which took off $1.28 and came off automatically when I scanned my bonuscard. It would have made more sense to save it for a larger shopping trip, but I recently did a stock up and I'm not sure when I'll have another trip to town. We live in a rural area, so I don't shop weekly.

I figure the 5% helped against the $10worth of bananas I bought that my 4 children will finish off by tomorrow:), so all is well!