Thursday, February 25, 2016

Eat Clean on a Budget with ALDI

Week after week, my friends and Zumba® fitness ladies want more and more of one thing. It's not more Zumba® fitness (which I will gladly do), it's help planning healthy meals. We can completely conquer our workouts together, but we are falling apart when it comes to feeding ourselves better and taking care of our families. We are rushing around to get dinner on the table to make it to sports, to church, or to our Zumba® fitness classes and we forget the biggest piece of the puzzle!

Our nutrition is the biggest part of caring for our families. If we put junk in, we get junk out. If we take a few extra steps to plan, we can save time, money and effort while taking special care of ourselves and the ones we love most. A lot of my friends think that it takes all of this time, careful planning, 5 page spreadsheets, and hours of shopping and cooking to pull all of this off. I'm here to tell you that it does not! I'm actually just going to do the work for you, show you my process, and then show you how I save money too! (I do actually need your help sharing this post though. That's all I ask of you.) 

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

Again, we will go back to this post {HERE}:

"When I lose weight I look for grace, not perfection! And guess how I lost over 90 pounds??? Guess what works every single time? Grace! Baby steps! You work with what you have and you don't stress. If you can afford organic one hundred percent of the time and can grow all of your vegetables, I am so very happy for you. I cannot and I am unashamed to admit that. I have to work within a budget and I make my money stretch. We can still lose weight and make it work!"

The key to saving money for me is shopping with ALDI! I am a very organized person and I love lists. I can remember my mama doing something similar and I think that carried over to me as an adult. 

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

I simply write out my days of the week so I can not only plan my schedule, but I can also plan my meals around my busiest nights. I know which nights need crockpot meals and which nights I have more time to spend in the kitchen. On the nights I am teaching my Zumba® fitness classes, I normally leave dinner for my husband and little boy in the crockpot.

I rely heavily on the ALDI website {HERE} so I can find their sale ads and match up meal ideas for the items on sale that week. I love saving money and it also helps give me meal ideas. If salmon is on sale and we haven't had it in a while, it reminds me to add it back into my meal plan for the week and makes me switch things up! Sometimes I get stuck on the same meals and I need the variety.

ALDI also has Better For You Recipes on their website {HERE} to get you started as well. This is a great source that many people don't even know about. When I toured their test kitchen two years ago, I was able to sample several of these recipes. They are amazing! You can sneak in healthy foods for your family without them even realizing. You don't even need me!

But if you actually came here for clean eating recipes and you want to see a meal plan on a budget, I am still happy to share it with you! This week I picked seven full dinners where we could have a lot of leftovers. Caleb is eating breakfast and lunch at school, so typically I am just worrying about lunch and breakfast for two adults right now. You can increase these for your own family's needs. My 6 year old isn't really making much of a dent on our grocery budget right now, but my husband sure eats well so I think it balances out.

Monday - Turkey, Broccoli, and Brown Rice ($13.58)

I place my thawed turkey breasts in the crockpot with about a cup of organic chicken broth and cook on low all day. I serve with broccoli and two packs of instant brown rice. Check the ingredients on the back of the brown rice! The brand that ALDI carries has only ingredients I can pronounce and is all natural. It remains a "clean eating" item for me and my family. I paid $8.99 for the turkey and have leftover out of it, $1.09 for the broccoli, and $3.50 for the rice. This is a little pricer for the meal, but if you think of how much turkey you get for salads for the week, it evens out!

Tuesday - Baked Chicken over Sweet Rice, Salad ($7.48)

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

I bake all of my chicken for the week together in glass baking dishes with a little bit of olive oil in the bottom. Then I top my chicken with cracked black pepper and pink Himalayan salt. I keep my spice cabinet well stocked and I did not have to purchase any herbs or spices on this grocery trip. You may have to supplement your pantry as you go, but my prices do not include those items. Bake your chicken for one hour at 350 degrees or until it is cooked through and the juices run clear. Meanwhile It's time to make the rice! I adapted this beloved rice recipe from one of my dearest friends. This is not her identical recipe (you must be her friend to have that), but I changed it a bit so you could still enjoy a little bit of awesomeness at home. I used a blended rice from ALDI. I purchased this rice a couple of weeks ago so I do not have an exact price. I think it was less than $2 so we will guess around there to be fair. I used one cup of rice in my pressure/rice cooker and one and a quarter cup of water. I added one tablespoon of olive oil, one cinnamon stick, a hand full each of raisins and cashews, and I chopped a hand full of baby carrots. I cooked it in my rice cooker for 22 minutes and it came out perfect. You can make this on your stovetop, but you simply bring it to a boil and then cover and reduce to a simmer until the rice is cooked. I can't cook rice to save my life, so my pressure/rice cooker does it for me! You can find the same one {HERE}. Let me tell you about this rice... It is a life changer! Kids will eat it. Husbands will beg for more. You will never eat plain rice again. You are welcome.  So if I had to guess, the rice costs about $4.23  because I still have plenty of leftover rice, cashews, carrots and raisins. Then I used half of the chicken, so that comes to $3.25.

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

Wednesday - Zucchini Boats, Salad ($5.29) 

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

There are tons of recipes out there for zucchini boats. I'm not going to bore you to death with a million pictures. Just slice a zucchini in half, dig out the middle. Boil the zucchini for one minute. Brown some ground turkey meat, toss in some of the sweet rice from the night before and heat together. Fill your zucchini halves with that mixture, set in a glass baking dish, and bake at 400 degrees for 35 minutes. Zucchini was $1.99, ground turkey was $3.29, and our rice was leftover! 

Thursday - Chicken Black Bean Soup ($8.49) 

I pick my organic black beans and soak them overnight. Then throw them in the crockpot the night before. I used two cups of dried beans. Then I added two containers of organic chicken broth (less the cup of broth we used on turkey night). I add about a cup of water to that too. I chop two hand fulls of baby carrots (Like my accurate measurements??? Don't be so serious in life, sweet mamas! Let's have some fun with this, okay?) Then I start digging around in the pantry. I add garlic, chili powder, maybe a dash of cayenne, you can throw anything you like in. If you have dried onions, they're awesome. Sometimes I have frozen onions leftover, I dump it in. This is your soup. You get to make it whatever you want it to be! There are no rules here. Then throw in some of that baked chicken (I shred mine or sometimes dump it in and come back later with forks and get it!). Cook that mess on low all day!

When you come home, you can eat! Or you can take it one step further. If you like a thicker soup, you can get out your kitchen boat motor (Hey, I work at a with me here...) and you can blend up some of those beans. (I'm seriously talking about one of those hand held blenders, right??) It will make it creamy and awesome. Take it as far as you want to do with it. Then you can top this soup with some diced tomatoes or a little light cheese. Cilantro is awesome too! Chopped green onion.... You have so much flexibility. Go make your family happy! Clean eating can be flexible, reasonable and delicious!

I didn't use the whole pack of beans, maybe half... That is about $1.00. The broth was $3.58 and the carrots are $.66 (I counted 1/3 of them in the rice recipe). The chicken is $3.25. You have leftovers with a salad the next day too!

Friday - Salmon Packets with Brown Rice ($11.58) 

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

This is quick and easy, y'all! Get out your aluminum foil and be prepared for easy clean up. I thawed my salmon filets and just cut the skin off. It's so easy. It really almost peels off once you get one corner going. Take some asparagus spears and place them on the aluminum foil square. Throw your fish on top. I salt and pepper mine. Lemon juice is awesome on top. Create a foil packet on top. I cooked mine for 20 minutes in a 425 degree oven. You want the fish to be flaky and cooked through. I served with brown rice. I used half of the fish so it was $3.50, the asparagus was $4.58, and the rice was 3.50. 

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

Saturday - Eye of Round Steak over Salad ($7.34) 

I sliced my steak thin cooked with some chopped garlic (I keep chopped garlic in the fridge) stir fry style. We served over a large salad with mushrooms and carrots. It was so good! Steak and mushrooms were $7.34.

Sunday - Apples and Raisins over Baked Chicken, Salad ($5.90)

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

I used my baked chicken and topped it with apples and raisins. This tastes like dessert, but there is no sugar added! If you want your kids to eat, you serve this. My husband's granny made this for him as a child and I started making it for him not long ago. I peel my apples and put them in a pot. I add raisins and barely cover with water. Sprinkle with a tablespoon of cinnamon and bring to a boil. I simmer until everything cooks down and gets mushy. You almost have no liquid. It tastes amazing! 

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

I used maybe 5 apples and two hand fulls of raisins. I would guess is costs $2.65 for that, plus the chicken at $3.25. 

#eatclean, #budget, #kidfriendly, #dailydoseofdelsignore, #ALDI, #inthealdikitchen, #cleaneating, #fitmom, #recipes, #healthy, #weightloss, #mealplan

All of our salad stuff for the week costs $12.13. We are a salad loving family! You can sub in any fresh veggie of your choosing. Make it what you and your family enjoy and will eat. This is simply a guide. We spent $3.18 on eggs and $1.28 on bananas. 

Our breakfasts are usually quick and easy. We scramble eggs or eat fruit. Sometimes both. It doesn't bother us one bit to eat the same thing every day. The old fashioned oatmeal is also a good choice with fruit. Lunch is leftovers! I also bake chicken and have it on top of a large salad. We keep it simple and easy because we are normally pretty busy. The only meal I can't stand to repeat is dinner. I have to have something different at dinner or it drives me crazy! 

Our grocery total came out to $76.25 for the week. 

Many of you ask for a shopping list, so I created an easy Excel spreadsheet you can simply print and take to ALDI with you {HERE}.

I does take a lot of time to create these and I love you guys. I want to see you succeed. I want to help you take care of your families and yourselves. If you want to help me back and share the love, please take a moment to share this post on social media with your friends and family. Not only does it share my little blog and help my family, but it also helps your people too! We all win and I keep posting away!

If you want to follow me on all my social channels, I made you easy links below:

If you want to follow ALDI also for great deals, recipes, and ideas, you can find them here:

ALDI Website:
ALDI Blog:
Pinterest (for GREAT recipes):

If you're new here and you don't know my story... Well, I lost 90 pounds through quality nutrition (just like you read above) and doing Zumba® fitness twice a week. I hope you'll stick around because we have plenty more ALDI stuff coming your way, friends!!!!

1 comment:

  1. If I didn't personally know you, I'd think you never sleep! So you're not only a working mom who helps lead others including myself, with fun exercise (these two words really should NEVER be used together) but you're also a conscientious chef at large! Wendy & Aldi are awesome!!!
    XO, your Catholic Yankee friend



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