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Meal Plans

Say “Yes” To Healthy Tricks & Treats with PlateJoy!

on October 10, 2018

Halloween Prep with PlateJoy

October is such a fun month… spooky decorations, kids in cute costumes, and just all the Halloween fun in general.

However, with all the great things that come with Halloween, there’s also the processed candy and temptation to indulge that sweet tooth with unhealthy sweets.

Too much sugar can cause havoc on the body; causing fatigue, weight gain, and headaches. It also increases the risk of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Read more...

Learn How To Save on Groceries & Keep More Money in Your Pocket Every Month!

on January 5, 2018

Groceries are a huge expense for our family, second only to our house payment. And our grocery budget is not a rigid expense – it’s one expense I have a lot of control over!

Therefore I LOVE to find ways to save money on groceries and make my life easier at the same time. Erin Chase (of $5 Dinner fame) has created a course that does just that – help free up your time and money by giving your grocery budget a makeover! Read more...

10 Weeks of Easy & Budget-Friendly Dinner Recipes

on August 14, 2017

Lots of inspiration for getting dinner on the table! Easy and budget friendly recipes for dinner on the cheap.

Readers often ask for easy, budget-friendly dinner recipes here at The Frugal South. So today I’m sharing LOTS of recipes in one post!

For a year I shared my weekly dinner meal plan here on the blog. I made affordable, healthy, and easy dinners a habit, so now I have a huge collection of go-to dinners that I make regularly!

So here’s ten weeks’ worth of my favorite dinner recipes from my year of meal planning… I hope you find some inspiration for planning meals! Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 3/13/16 with Recipes

on March 15, 2016

2016-03-15 07_06_20-Say Mmm

Since I was able to make a trip to both Trader Joe’s and Costco last week, our fridge and freezer are stocked with meal-ready ideas right now! This Sunday I made dinner for our family + Grandpa from part of a Costco rotisserie chicken, delicious Trader Joe’s Green Beans and homemade potatoes au gratin (which I somehow had never made before?) I got a 10 lb. bag of potatoes for $3.99 at Food Lion this week so I will try to sneak potatoes into our meal plan quite a bit in the next few weeks! Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 2/28/16 with Recipes

on March 1, 2016

2016-03-01 14_11_52-Say Mmm

I’ve been hit or miss with meal planning lately and I have a one word explanation… Costco. After getting a membership last month, I stocked up on some frozen food (organic veggie mixes, fish, etc.) that made it super easy to throw meals together without a meal plan. The result was that dinner felt lackluster and uninspired for a while there. That’s the trade off, I guess – dinner without any planning or prep is nice but boring! Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 2/7/16 with (lots of new) Recipes

on February 8, 2016

2016-02-08 16_00_24-Say Mmm

I’m back to a meal plan after sorely missing one last week. I made the plan in reverse of how I normally do – I shopped first, then made my meal plan second. The main reason for this is that we finally got a Costco membership (through this fantastic Living Social deal) and I bought only the best priced items there. Then the meal plan came from what I got there plus what we had in the freezer! Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 1/24/16 with Recipes

on January 24, 2016

2016-01-24 14_30_23-Say Mmm

I’m revisiting some favorites from last year in this week’s meal plan (Croque Monsieur, Beef Empanadillas, and a yummy vegetarian Indian dinner) as well as trying out some new budget-friendly dishes. I plan on making a huge batch of chicken tenders and freezing them for a quick lunch or dinner main course.

Have you ever felt like you ran out of everything at once in your pantry? Wow, did I have that experience this week. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 1/17/16 with Recipes {Humble & Yummy}

on January 17, 2016

2016-01-17 06_49_17-Say Mmm

This month I am determined to keep our grocery budget under $100/week without sacrificing nutrition or flavor. Last week = success! I am trying to take advantage of store sales and grocery rebates to stay under budget. Something that really helped last week was to make a few things from scratch that I would have otherwise bought, such as cookies (times two… oopsie) and bread.

Plus I get a break from cooking two nights this week thanks to birthday celebrations. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 1/10/16 with Recipes

on January 10, 2016

2016-01-10 16_04_36-Say Mmm

I made a bold move this new year and dropped our monthly grocery budget down to $400. I have been spending between $425-$450 per month lately so I think it is a pretty achievable goal.

To help me reach my goal I’m going to try to plan more meals around what is on sale and what rebates are available on Ibotta. For example, I had offers for $0.50 cash back on both carrots and broccoli from Ibotta this week, so I incorporated those into our meal for Wednesday, Kung Pao Chicken & Vegetables. Read more...

{Mini} Weekly Meal Plan 12/30/15 with Recipes – Happy New Year!

on December 30, 2015

2015-12-30 06_03_54-Say Mmm

I’m glad I tackled a meal plan this morning because it helped me remember that 1) I want to have classic Southern “good luck” food on New Year’s Day and 2) I want to try out the pressure cooker my husband gave me for Christmas as soon as possible! 🙂 Though this plan is only for part of the week, I figured it is better than nothing and it lets me share some easy and frugal recipes to ring in the New Year. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 12/14/15 with Recipes {Cleaning Out the Pantry… Again}

on December 14, 2015


Believe it or not, I was ready to survey and clean out the cupboards and freezer again this week. I find that if I really want to save money on our grocery budget, I do this about once a month. When I “shop” from what is already in the house and build a meal plan around that, I have to buy significantly less at the store. Plus this usually requires some creative and new recipes which is always exciting! Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 12/6/15 with Recipes

on December 7, 2015

2015-12-06 21_44_44-Say Mmm

I took a week off from meal planning due to traveling to Ohio to visit my family. I am actually thrilled to have a plan for this week and be back to a routine. Traveling and eating out is great but I really do love cooking in my own kitchen and eating at home!

I made this Chana Masala (a chickpea and tomato dish) and Vegetable Biryani last weekend but had to share them in the meal plan because they were extra good. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 11/22/2015 with Recipes {Thanksgiving, too!}

on November 23, 2015

2015-11-23 15_54_30-Say Mmm

We had an early Thanksgiving with friends this year and decided to take it easy on the actual Turkey Day. I spatchcocked the turkey for the second year in a row and I’m never looking back. I know you want to know more about this strange-sounding method of cooking a turkey so read more here! Be sure to check out the rest of what I’m cooking this week below, including my favorite part of Thanksgiving, this Cranberry-Orange Relish with Mint. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 11/15/15 – Clean Out the Freezer Version

on November 15, 2015

new meal plan
As I was searching for strawberries in the freezer this week, I realized it was brimming with recipe-ready food. I decided to take an inventory of our freezer, fridge and pantry and I was SHOCKED by how much food I have hanging around our house! I would share my list except that it is embarrassing and will likely bore you. SO my goal this week was to find recipes that used what I already had and buy as little as possible at the store. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 11/8/15 with {Budget Friendly} Recipes

on November 9, 2015

2015-11-09 06_58_00-Say Mmm

This month I am trying to find extra money in our budget to pad the Christmas fund. I was able to put $20 in the fund last week just because I came in under budget on our groceries. So I have been on the lookout for healthy, low-cost meals for this week to hopefully add some more cash to Santa’s stash!

I got a great deal on some thinly sliced beef labeled “Carne Picada” at the grocery store, then got home and started to wonder what to do with it! Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 11/1/15 with Recipes

on November 2, 2015

2015-11-02 11_51_19-Say Mmm

I am being really disciplined this week with using what we already have in the house for dinners. Even when we are “out of food” (according to my husband), we still seem to have SO much food in our freezer and cupboards. So I am using baked beans, couscous, ramen noodles, bread flour, chicken thighs, frozen veggies, eggs, and tomatoes from the garden (yep, I’m still getting tomatoes from one plant) that I didn’t have to buy in recipes this week. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 10/25/15 with Recipes

on October 27, 2015

2015-10-26 15_56_10-Say Mmm

Here is a budget-friendly, simple, healthy meal plan for y’all this week. I am trying to make use of what we have in the pantry and freezer to make a little room in the budget for Christmas gifts. I’m particularly excited to try this Chicken Yakisoba from Budget Bytes, a site I discovered this week full of healthy and affordable recipes.

pumpkin cookies

In other news, the pumpkin madness continues. I made two recipes this week, these amazing Pumpkin Cookies from Eating on a Dime (my husband ate TEN after dinner) and these yummy Pumpkin Pudding Muffins from Something Swanky (my sister-in-law declared they were as good as Starbucks!) Check out my Desserts/Snacks page on Pinterest for these and other pumpkin recipes. Read more...

Weekly Meal Plan 10/18/2015 with Recipes (using lots of eggs)

on October 19, 2015


We are up to our ears in eggs right now. It is amazing how quickly eggs accumulate when your chickens are laying 6-8 eggs each day! My goal was to incorporate eggs into three of my dinner recipes this week. Side note – If you’ve never made a frittata or quiche with chorizo, please put this on your to-do list immediately.

I am also currently reaching peak pumpkin frenzy. I want to eat it every day. Read more...

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