This month’s Walmart Grocery Challenge was to shop for a classic Thanksgiving dinner at Walmart and spend $40 or less doing it.
I went with a very typical Thanksgiving meal: Turkey & Gravy, Stuffing (homemade), Mashed Potatoes, Green Bean Casserole, Cranberry Relish and Pumpkin Pie. Here’s how I made out:
(note: If you are reading this via an email subscription-then click on this to see the video: Walmart Thanksgiving Dinner Challenge)
So I was able to buy everything for around $37! And out of that there are a LOT of potatoes left for other uses (hello-10 lb bag!), some sausage links and some cheese that were not fully used-so technically I spent even LESS.
What is your typical Thanksgiving menu? How much do you think you spend to prepare your meal?
This year’s menu:
Turkey (I paid 39 cents a pound for the Jennie O Premium brand), two kinds of stuffing (will make with my own bread) (an herb, celery, and onion and oyster (hubby)), homemade mashed potatoes (49 cents a 5lb bag at Fry’s (Kroger)), homemade macaroni and cheese (sharp shredded cheese 16 oz bag on sale for $1.49 a pound), sweet potatoes, brussel sprout and green bean casserole ( using fresh veggies), sparkling apple cider (2 for $4), homemade rolls and King’s Hawaiian Rolls (2 for $5, will buy 1 only). Dessert is a pumpkin swirl cheesecake (cream cheese 4 for $5, 1lb packages) and homemade (including the crust) coconut cream pie.
Now, I have begun the preparations because obviously I don’t want to cook all day and night!! (plus I have been sick in bed most of the day). I have premade my rolls, they are shaped and frozen in shape, simply take out and thaw, rise and bake fresh (warm store bought). Shopping done except brussel sprouts, green beans, and cranberries (forgot to mention them lol!). Making pie crust tonight, tommorow my cheesecake. Monday afternoon I will finish shopping, complete any peeling and chopping with the aid of hubby (enlist help!). Tuesday I will piece together casseroles. Wednesday night make pie, cheesecake, and cranberry sauce (leave in frig overnight to chill). Additionally Wed I will put my turkey stock ingredients into the crockpot. Thursday morning bake rolls, then the turkey (mac and cheese in crockpot), and pop in casseroles while Turkey rests. My casseroles are 9×9 and smaller. (Warm rolls).
I have a budget of $70, I plan for it well, many ingredients I have on hand like flour, pasta, butter, etc. Will let everyone know my final costs!
while I haven’t tallied my final costs, here’s what I have so far:
-Price matched a whole turkey @ 49/lb from the A & P ad vs the 59/lb Stop and Shop has. It was under $9.
-stuffing is Bells boxed cubes ($2 after sale + cpn), onion and celery on hand, mushrooms $1.29, butter on hand, a roll of Jamestown pork sausage $1.49 Shoprite sale, homemade chicken stock-that’s a freebie
-10 lb bag of Russets from marked down @ $3/bag-whoot!, I’m guessing I’ll use 5 lbs so $1.50, plus milk, butter, spices on hand
-homemade gravy from pan drippings, flour, seasonings etc on hand so negligible
-I put up some homemade whole berry cranberry sauce last year using clearance after Xmas cranberries @ 99/bag. Super cheap I am guessing 50 cents/pint jar
-I’ll be making fresh cranberry ($1.50/bag at Xpect)-orange ($4.99 for 8 count bag navels at Stop and Shop, plus sugar on hand)relish, so figure $2
-I’ll make homemade rolls using my ABM machines-around 50 cents again
-sale plus rebate bottle of wine $8
-5 lb box sweet potatoes from Shoprite $2.50, but that provides extra
-marshmallows 99 from Aldi’s
-3 boxes Green Giant broccoli in cheese sauce (DS request) @ $1.33/box
-Birds eye pearl onions in cream sauce @ 75/box after sale plus cpn. I toss these with a $1 bag of peas. Perfect.
-mashed CSA organic butternut squash, estimate $1
-homemade pumpkin pie: CSA organic sugar pie pumpkin $1, 2 cans Carnation milk on hand $1 (combined sale plus cpn), sugar, eggs, spices on hand, will make crusts, so figure $3 for 2 pies
-whipping cream $2
-homemade apple pie: make own crusts, apples were $1.99/3 lb hag, spices, sugar on hand so figure $3 which is on the high side for one pie
-tub of Turkey Hill vanilla bean ice cream $2.50 @ IGA this week
The above is $45.76, a bit more expansive than your sample menu, yet still cheaper than a restaurant and will provide several days of as is leftovers (make a plate, you’re on your own!) before the soup, casseroles, “pulled BBQ turkey” sandwiches start.
Have a wonderful holiday!
I don’t know my exact total, but I bet it’s coming in way under $40. My turkey was free at ShopRite for spending $300 over the past couple weeks (I use a lot of coupons, and the $300 is pre-coupon, so I didn’t spend anywhere near that much out of pocket).
A 12 oz bag of cranberries is 99 cents at Aldi this week, and they have a 10 lb bag of potatoes for $2.49. I got my Carnation evaporated milk for 49 cents with a coupon. My frozen green beans were 24 cents per 12 oz bag with, you guessed it — coupons!
By using coupons, shopping sales strategically and going to more than one store, you can save quite a bit of money.
I’m shooting for under $50.00 this year…we’ll see. Still learning my way around, but have really learned alot from your site.
btw, just noticed that you have my site on your blogroll. Thank you so much !!
May I add yours to mine?