this house.....
the last three days.....

$100 grocery challenge ~ week 3

This is the week I completely fell off my budget.

In part this is due to the chaos of life right now! We've opted for some easy dinners with the house showings we had last week. I am well aware that we can have the best of intentions, but sometimes life has another plan for us. At first I really was bummed that I went over my budget, but that's just silly. You know? I did the best with what I had going on in that moment. 

Spent this week: $177

lunch meat, cheese, eggs, milk, chips, butter, bread, cereal, pasta, diced tomatoes, sliced almonds, oats, coconut flakes, almond milk, coffee, mayo, lettuce, kale, strawberries, mangoes, avocados, kale, apples, carrots & cucumbers

The deli sandwich fixins threw me over budget, but eating sandwiches for three meals (under $40) was certainly cheaper than eating out for three meals! And the ease was much appreciated in the crazy days last week. I briefly considered buying cheap lunch meat to stay within budget, but I felt eating as healthy as possible was worth going over. We avoided eating out too!

Menu for the week:

breakfast ~ smoothies, granola & kefir, oatmeal, cereal

lunch ~ leftover dinner 2 days, smoothies + chips + hummus, sandwiches, hummus + veggies + crackers, salads twice

dinner ~  sandwiches twice, hummus + veggies + popcorn, eggs + greens + fruit salad, black bean soup + salad, salmon + rice + salad, spaghetti + salad

We pulled off big meal sized salads or a green smoothie 5 days again. (still trying for seven!)

How about you? I'd love for you to share any helpful bits that got you through the week.

Today I want to talk about beans! For our family, beans play a huge role in healthy simple frugal eating. Bean dips + veggies for snacks. Bean soups. Beans + rice. Beans in burritos. Beans over tortillas and topped with eggs & greens. 

We soak our beans overnight & I cook double batches once or twice a week. I love heading into the weekend with a few jars of beans in the fridge. They can be easily frozen after you cook them too, we just usually eat them too fast to do this.

Please share a link to your favorite recipe or your favorite ways to eat beans in the comments! 


$100 grocery challenge  ~  week 3


$100 grocery challenge  ~  week 3


$100 grocery challenge  ~  week 3


Three new ways I served beans in the last week were roasted chickpeas, black bean brownies from the Whole Food Kitchen class (similar to this recipe here) and sprouted chickpeas in our hummus. All were very delicious, though the brownies are certainly on the earthy side.... 

Sticking with beans.... I wanted to share one of my favorite soup recipes with you. Served with a big green salad, this makes a hearty healthy meal. I usually make it meat free..... but if you have some good bacon, that takes it up a notch. Amazingly good.


$100 grocery challenge  ~  week 3


Black Bean Sweet Potato Soup

makes enough to feed a hungry family of six


3 small onions, diced

2 large sweet potatoes, peeled & diced into 1 inch cubes

1-2 TBSP cumin

1-2 TBSP paprika

4-5 cups black beans (about 3 cans, liquid drained)

4-6 cloves garlic

handful of parsley (optional)

water to thin, if necessary

sea salt and lime juice to taste


$100 grocery challenge  ~  week 3


Saute onions in oil of your choice over medium heat. When soft and translucent, add the potatoes and 8 cups of water. Stir in the spices and simmer until the potatoes are soft. Add the beans. Stir. Remove about one third of the soup and blend in a blender with a handful of parsley and the garlic cloves until it is nice and smooth. You may need to blend the soup in two batches. Add the blended beans back to the soup & stir to combine. At this point you can thin with water to make the soup the consistency you like. I make mine like a thick soup. Add more spices if you like, sea salt & lime juice to taste. 

Serve with a big green salad. This soup is really yummy with a bit of sharp cheddar grated over it. Or sour cream. Avocados, peppers, fresh cilantro. I don't make it spicy in the pot, my kids would be sad. But I do add a hearty dose of red pepper flakes to my own bowl. So very good.

Best of all you can add the leftovers to a bit of rice and make burritos/wraps for lunch.



$100 grocery challenge  ~  week 3