A strict 2-week menu is just what you need when your budget is especially tight.

We’re about to enter a new chapter in the New Year: Kyler’s going to school! And while our bank account doesn’t warrant a tight grocery budget this month, I wanted to stock up on a few items and do some very strict meal planning for the next 2 weeks in order to save as much money in our checking and savings account before our monthly income shifts. Here’s what I plan to cook these next couple weeks, a list of what we spent and how much, plus a grocery list for a perfect pantry available for download!!

After a morning of specific meal planning, we made a quick trip to Costco for Violet’s dog treats and a few other items, and then made our way over to a local grocery store with really low prices. Kyler made that trip into Costco himself, while I stayed in the car, and he did not disappoint! He got the items we needed from both shopping lists, and barely splurged…. Frozen Taquitos and KS Frozen Pizza rounded the bill out to be close to $77. Excluding Violet’s dog treats, that put us at $55. Our trip to SuperOne was for pantry, produce and some frozen items. 

A Strict 2-Week Menu

A bulk of the items from Sunday’s grocery shopping were for lightly restocking pantry items like pasta, flour, stuffing, sauce, and broths (for when I don’t have homemade broth at the ready). The produce purchased on this day will likely carry us through to the end of the month. Something I try to do when I’m planning a strict 2-week menu is to choose dinners that have produce or foods that overlap like bread, cheese, carrots, celery and onions.

Examples for Shopping for a 2-Week Menu

  1. I want to make sure that the lettuce doesn’t go bad, so I put turkey tacos and hamburgers on the meal planning list for the same week
  2. It’s winter time so I have quite a bit of soups that have carrots, potatoes and celery overlapping
  3. I don’t want the hamburger buns to go stale or green so we have cheeseburgers and pulled pork sandwiches on the Menu 

The Strict 2-Week Dinner Menu

  1. Stouffer’s Chicken enchiladas (made 4 meals for us total) $15
  2. Chicken soup with rolls
  3. Turkey tacos
  4. Turkey tacos
  5. Potato Soup with rolls
  6. Beef stew with rolls
  7. Spaghetti with bread
  8. Spaghetti with bread
  9. Chicken Alfredo with peas, bacon and bread
  10. Chicken pot pie (homemade) make 2 dinners
  11. Hamburger helper (backup dinner)
  12. Chicken Breasts, Pasta Roni and oven roasted carrots
  13. Chicken Breasts, oven roasted carrots and starch 
  14. Sloppy Joes
  15. Pulled Pork sandwiches with green beans
  16. Pork Loin, pasta, potatoes or stuffing, and oven roasted carrots
  17. Pork chop with pasta, potatoes or stuffing, and oven roasted carrots
  18. Cheese burgers and fries
  19. Christmas Eve
  20. Christmas Day

Additional Resources for Your Strict Menu

Here is What We Bought & Spent for the 2 Weeks


  • Chicken Stuffing .88
  • Pork Stuffing .88 (3)
  • Flour 1.98
  • Chicken broth (store box) 1.63 (2)
  • Beef broth (store box) 1.63 (2)
  • Vegetable Broth (organic brand) 1.89
  • Pasta sauce (store brand) 1.58
  • Alfredo Sauce (store brand) 2.53
  • Fettuccine pasta .98
  • Tater tots 1.98 
  • Steak fries 2.79
  • Frozen Peas and Carrots .78 (2)
  • Frozen peas (.78)
  • Frozen Bell Peppers 2.48
  • Hamburger Buns .88
  • 2 Honeycrisp Apples  (2.98/lb) 2.79
  • Yellow and Red potatoes (.98/lb) 2.36
  • Avocados 1.28 (2)
  • Tomato (1.28/lb) .21
  • Lettuce 1.98
  • Bananas (.58/lb) .97
  • Celery (.74/lb) .95
  • Small Bag of Carrots 1.98
  • Deli- Colby Jack Cheese 1.96 (¼ lb)
  • Deli- Virginia Ham 3.50 (½ lb)
  • Deli- Smoked Turkey 4.31 (½ lb)
  • Loose leaf Bay Leaves from the bulk section 

TOTAL $53.05

Not counting from SuperOne- 

  • Brownies 1.53- splurge item
  • Cherry Chip Cake mix 1.63 (3) Cherry Chip Cake mix is Ky’s favorite so we always buy a few when we actually see it in a grocery store in town. 
  • Powdered sugar 2.48


  • 2 gallons milk 5.73 (cheaper option here)
  • Muffins 8
  • KS Frozen Pizza 12.99 for 4 frozen pizzas
  • Organic Spaghetti 10.79 for 8 packets of spaghetti, which will be approx. 16+ dinners (so .67/dinner)
  • KS Butter 6.99
  • Chicken Taquitos frozen 9.99

TOTAL $55.48


To see what a detailed trip to Costco looks like, click here.