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December 2018 Meal Plan & Grocery Haul – Freezer Cooking for Two Months

This Freezer Cooking for Two Months post contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for supporting Pennies Into Pearls by using my links!

We are deep into holiday territory with Christmas right around the corner!! Planning, cooking, and staying in budget at this time of year can get really tricky! Adding meal planning on top of all the craziness can be overwhelming.

You know I got you Pearl! I have come to your rescue with the meal plan my family and I are following. I have created allowances for events, having family over and more. As long as you plan ahead and anticipate, your meal plan can be smooth sailing into the new year! Check out how I am going to be Freezer Cooking for Two months on my Instagram Stories

This month, I am committed to sharing with you how my family deals with all of these  “unforeseen” events and plans for them as much as possible.

 

In this monthly grocery haul on a budget I’m shopping to feed our family of five for TWO MONTHS! I’m talking freezer meals this month! Crazy schedules and small budgets are in need of some freezer meal ideas.Take a look at our Costco grocery haul on a budget and learn tips to save money on groceries.

Continue Reading →

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Pesto Asparagus Tortellini Pasta Salad

Comin at ya with another super easy and crazy fast dinner idea! Plus, you can feel great about feeding this pesto tortellini dinner to your family because it is fresh and full of veggies (if you want!)

Tonight its a 5 ingredient dinner that will be on the table in under 20 minutes!

Tonight its a 5 ingredient dinner that will be on the table in under 20 minutes! You can count this as a healthy dinner idea because it is full of fresh yummy veggies! This cheap dinner idea will help you stay on budget and still keep all the flavor in the meal!

Related Articles:

 

Fast Pesto Asparagus Tortellini

(video)

 

This easy dinner idea is a family pleaser for sure! Leave the veggies cut into large pieces making it easy for your picky eaters to scavenge around.

This quick dinner idea is going to take you under 20 minutes to whip together and less than $5 to feed your family!

Tonight its a 5 ingredient dinner that will be on the table in under 20 minutes! You can count this as a healthy dinner idea because it is full of fresh yummy veggies! This cheap dinner idea will help you stay on budget and still keep all the flavor in the meal!

 

Tonight its a 5 ingredient dinner that will be on the table in under 20 minutes! You can count this as a healthy dinner idea because it is full of fresh yummy veggies! This cheap dinner idea will help you stay on budget and still keep all the flavor in the meal!

 

Pesto tortellini is perfect for busy nights where you feel like there is no time to cook but the drive thru is not on the meal plan!

Tonight its a 5 ingredient dinner that will be on the table in under 20 minutes! You can count this as a healthy dinner idea because it is full of fresh yummy veggies! This cheap dinner idea will help you stay on budget and still keep all the flavor in the meal!

The hardest thing you will be doing for dinner tonight is boing a pot of water! You can do it!

Oooh! This would also make a super good on-the-go meal idea!

 

My Favorite Cooking Tools

  • Bamboo Mixing Spoons that my brother got me for Christmas over five years ago and I still use them every day!
  • I use a Rubber Spatula in almost every recipe I am making.
  • We are still using the same Non-Stick Pot that my grandma got us for our wedding almost 12 years ago and we love it!
  • Insulated Carrier for On-The-Go Meals.

This quick dinner idea is going to take you under 20 minutes to whip together and under $5 to feed your family! There is no excuse tonight to mess up your meal plan! This cheap dinner idea will help you stay on budget and still keep all the flavor in the meal!

Share Your Dinner on Instagram!

I would love to see how your family likes your dinner! Share a picture of how your easy cesar pasta salad recipe turns out and tag me on Instagram @PenniesIntoPearls.

 

Thanks so much for stopping in and I will talk to ya soon! Xoxo

Pesto Asparagus Tortellini
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Ingredients
  1. 4 Red Bell Pepper (chopped)
  2. 2 lbs. Asparagus (chopped into 2 inch pieces)
  3. 2 cups Chopped Grilled Chicken
  4. 1 lb. Frozen Tortellini Pasta
  5. ½ cup Pesto (Costco is the best place to buy!)
  6. Optional toppings: chopped parsley, grated parmesan, bacon crumbs
Instructions
  1. Boil a large pot of water.
  2. Cook tortellini as package directs.
  3. Once tortellini is cooked and water is drained, in a large bowl combine all ingredients.
  4. Immediately serve and top with your favorite italian toppings.
  5. Enjoy!
Pennies into Pearls http://www.penniesintopearls.com/

 

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November 2018 Meal Plan & Grocery Haul

This post about our family budget meal plan contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for supporting Pennies Into Pearls by using my links!

November is the start of the holiday season! It’s the time when things can get out of control with your meal plan and food budget if you’re not careful. Family gatherings, treats at the kids school, or parties with friends, it can all add up!

This month, I am committed to sharing with you how my family deals with all of these  “unforeseen” events and plans for them as much as possible.

Use this family budget meal plan this November and feed your family for under $520! You will start to save money on groceries as soon as you use this family budget meal plan! Continue Reading →

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Meal Planning for Beginners – October 2018 Meal Plan & Grocery Haul

This post contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for supporting Pennies Into Pearls by using my links!

Meal planning for beginners might sound complicated and overwhelming at first, but give it a try and use this free meal plan to help make the process a lot easier!

 

Eating healthy on a budget is totally possible! How does $350 to cover your monthly grocery haul sound! This monthly grocery haul is going to show you how to eat healthy on a budget and help your entire family do the same thing! Costco and Target healthy grocery haul 2018.

Last month hubby and I completed our first ever Whole30 and it was awesome! We pretty much just ate meat, eggs, fruits, and lots of veggies for 30 days. The process is to help us figure out what foods our body can use best. Along the process we are also developing a lot healthier lifestyle!

We have learned a lot in the past 50 days but my favorite thing is we are learning how to balance organic eating with a small budget.

This month’s meal plan is another one full of whole nutritious meals that are easy, fast, cheap, and family friendly. Last month was another Whole30 meal plan if you want more healthy meal ideas.

You can read more about the Whole30 lifestyle change here.

Questions About Monthly Meal Planning for Beginners?

Pearl! I got you! Make sure you read this article on how to meal plan for beginners. In there you will find all the tips you need to make sure that you plan to the best of your ability and stay on budget!

 

Related Articles:

 

I’m also always sharing our daily frugal living tips for back to school survival over on my Instagram stories! It’s super fun over there so don’t forget to follow along!

 

My Favorite App for Grocery Shopping on a Budget

Did you guys know that Ibotta and I share the same birthday month!? It’s like our grocery bond was meant to be before either of us even existed here on this earth!

Because it’s their birthday (and I’m going to pretend like they are celebrating my birthday too…), between October 2-7 they are going to be giving away $1,000 a day to a lucky Ibotta shopper!

To be entered to win, post on Twitter or Instagram why you love Ibotta and how it’s helped your life, using the hashtag #IbottaversaryGiveaway. Visit the Ibotta blog for more details, and in the meantime, keep earning cash back with the free Ibotta app.

 

Helping your family eat healthy is about to get a lot easier! FREE PRINTABLE MEAL PLAN to cover your healthy eating habits for an entire month! It includes 16 healthy dinner ideas, 8 healthy lunch recipes, and 10 healthy breakfast recipes. All these healthy recipes are Whole30 and Paleo compliant!

Remember how our family used to spend over $1,000 a month on food? Remember how when we were spending that insane amount of money each month it was just for hubby and I? As in, “party of two”. Crazy!

Once I finally realized how much money and food we were wasting, I made it my mission to save as much money as possible on our grocery budget. That is when I first fell in love with Ibotta.

My qualifications for cash back apps to save money were as follows:

  • Must be easy & fast to use
  • Must save me money
  • Gift card or cash (Paypal or Venmo) opportunities to redeem cash back

Check. Check. Check!

My very favorite app to us is Ibotta! I have done an entire tutorial on how to use the app to maximize your savings. But in a nutshell this is how I do it, I do my normal grocery shopping first.

Then once I get all my groceries home, I will quickly open the app and search the two stores that I just went shopping at to see if there are any rebates that apply to my groceries. There are usually 3-4 that I can claim. This saves me around $5 each time I use the app.

If that doesn’t sound like much, trust me! The three minutes that it takes me to save $5 is 100% worth it! These small savings add up quick and once you hit $20 you can cash out in PayPal or Venmo, or choose from a bunch of really awesome gift cards! I usually choose Target and treat myself to a well deserved “mom’s only” snack!

If you are new to Ibotta, sign up using this link and you will automatically get $10 after you claim your first rebate! So easy!

This week the rebate I am most excited about has to be $4.00 cash back on a tri-tip steak or roast! I mean, how often do you get to save money on buying meat!? Great opportunity to save! Whenever Ibotta has cash back offers on meat, I claim them ASAP!

All offers were valid as of publish date. Don’t forget to check your app for details as offers change frequently and may not be available in all areas.

 

October 2018 Monthly Meal Planning for Beginners PRINTABLE

Do you want to get my monthly meal plan printables earlier?  If you sign up for my weekly newsletter, you will get them the week before the new month starts! Pretty handy right?

You can download this month’s budget friendly meal plan here.

Eating healthy on a budget is totally possible! How does $350 to cover your monthly grocery haul sound! This monthly grocery haul is going to show you how to eat healthy on a budget and help your entire family do the same thing! Costco and Target healthy grocery haul 2018.

 

October 2018 Grocery Haul

Eating healthy on a budget is totally possible! How does $350 to cover your monthly grocery haul sound! This monthly grocery haul is going to show you how to eat healthy on a budget and help your entire family do the same thing! Costco and Target healthy grocery haul 2018.

Take a peek at what it looks like to buy all non-perishable or freezable groceries for this exact meal plan.

I’d love to hear any questions you have! Leave them down in the comments below!

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Fast Freezer Sandwiches for Easy Lunch Prep

Any task that you repeat over and over needs to be batched! Are you repeatedly making sandwiches for lunches over and over again? It’s time to stop! Let me show you how to make a whole lot of lunch freezer sandwiches at one time to help you save a bunch of time in your week!

I was first introduced to the idea of lunch freezer sandwiches from my friend Stephanie from Six Figures Under. She always has the best money and time saving tips!

This is how to make a whole lot of lunch freezer sandiwches at one time to help you save a bunch of time in your week! Freezer cooking is the perfect way to do batch cooking and make it work for lunches too! Continue Reading →

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September 2018 FREE Meal Plan Printable

There is a huge myth that I am on a mission to bust! Have you ever been told, or maybe told yourself, that it’s impossible to eat healthy on a budget? In this month’s free meal plan printable and grocery haul I am going to prove that thinking wrong!

The biggest influence on this month’s healthy meal plan is that Hubby and I are currently undertaking our first ever Whole 30. If you aren’t familiar with the program, pretty much all you eat for 30 days is meat, eggs, a lot of veggies, and some fruit. That’s it.


It is possible to eat a healthy Whole30 lifestyle on a budget and still have food full of flavor and a variety of healthy meal ideas! This FREE PRINTABLE meal plan covers 16 healthy dinner ideas, 8 healthy lunch recipes, and 10 healthy breakfast recipes. All these meal ideas are Whole30 and Paleo compliant!
Continue Reading →

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Healthy Monthly Grocery Haul – September 2018

This Healthy Grocery Haul post is written by me in partnership and sponsored by Ibotta. All opinions are my own.

Call me crazy but I will never be able to go back from doing a monthly grocery haul. Yup, I buy an entire month’s worth of groceries on a budget all at the beginning of the month!

Eating healthy on a budget is totally possible! How does $350 to cover your monthly grocery haul sound! This monthly grocery haul is going to show you how to eat healthy on a budget and help your entire family do the same thing! Costco and Target healthy grocery haul 2018.

I feel like I have got it down to a science! Between my meal planning and monthly grocery shopping, we were able to cut our grocery spending from over $1,000 a month to under $400!

You can read more and learn how you can do the same thing in this article all about our grocery budget.

Use this month’s grocery haul as inspiration to cut your grocery bill. What would you do with an extra $600 this month?

 

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I’m also always sharing our daily frugal living tips for back to school survival over on my Instagram stories! It’s super fun over there so don’t forget to follow along!

 

My Favorite App to Save Money on Our Monthly Grocery Haul

There are a lot of extra expenses that we are trying to overcome in this month’s grocery haul! With back to school meals and healthy eating being the main hurdles!

The easiest and fastest way I have found to save money on my shopping is to use my favorite cash back app Ibotta.

If I was giving out trophies for helping make my life easier, Ibotta would get it! They make earning cash rewards so simple!

After I make my monthly meal plan and grocery list, I pull up the app and search the stores where I plan to shop, then look to see if any items from my list have a cash reward available. I also look to see if there are any offers that I could use as a substitute for something currently on my grocery list.

They make it so simple to redeem your cash back offers! Once you make your purchase you can submit your receipt. After it has been confirmed, your cash reward is credited to your account! Bam!

Ibotta is going to make eating healthy so much more affordable this month for our family! I have already found five rebates for fresh and healthy groceries I can claim!

I can’t express how much I love building up cash rewards from doing something that is already a part of my day!

What’s New This Month?

School is back in session for the kids, two of the kids started soccer season, and to top it of hubby and I decided to take on a new diet.

What that means is that our meals this month need to be especially easy and fast but also super healthy!

As for our “diet”, we have started a Whole30. You can read more about that here and if you want to buy the book make sure to shop online using Ibotta for cash back on your purchase!

Pretty much we eat only meat, eggs, a lot of fresh vegetables, and some fresh fruit. That’s it. This is going to take on a whole new grocery shopping strategy!

I need to find a way to make all the extra fresh produce and meat work into our $400 monthly grocery budget…

You’re gonna have to watch the video to find out how I ended up handling this situation!

 

September 2018 Healthy Grocery Haul

In this month’s grocery haul video I share a ton of tips to help you stack the savings on your grocery shopping.

Remember that all Ibotta offers were valid as of the recording of this video. Don’t forget to check your app for details as offers change frequently and may not be available in all areas.

*All offers discussed in this video were valid at time of recording. Don’t forget to check your app for details as offers change frequently and may not be available in all areas.

Thanks so much for stopping in and I will talk to you very soon!

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Easy Cesar Pasta Salad Recipe

What mom isn’t all about easy dinner ideas that their entire family will happily eat? Exactly! All moms need a quick, easy, and cheap dinner. Which is why today I wanted to share with you my  Easy Cesar Pasta Salad Recipe!

This recipe won’t heat up your kitchen, it’s easy on your wallet, and you can pull it all together in about 15 minutes!

 

What mom isn’t all about easy dinner ideas that their entire family will happily eat? Exactly! All moms need a quick, easy, and cheap dinner. Which is why you need this Easy Cesar Pasta Salad Recipe in your monthly meal plan! Continue Reading →

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Meal Planning for Beginners – August 2018 Meal Plan & Grocery Haul

This post contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you. Thank you so much for supporting Pennies Into Pearls by using my links! Now, onto our topic of summer meal planning for beginners. 

When life gets crazy my biggest tip for meal planning for beginners is to make freezer meals! The easiest way to tackle this task is to meal plan meals that can easily be duplicated in one night. Then it’s as simple as eat one that night and freeze the other for a busy night!

Meal planning for beginners can feel overwhelming. This meal plan is going to solve all the struggles moms find with meal planning on a budget! Easy, cheap, and quick dinner recipes. Easy and cheap lunch ideas. Every cheap meal idea on this meal plan is linked to help you get your grocery list together. Continue Reading →