Over the past 6 months we have dramatically reduced our grocery budget by shopping at Aldi... so much so, i'm going to share my secrets and tips in a new feature called Recipe Savers.
This recipe comes from one of my favorite blogs, 100 Day of Real Food and it's for homemade chicken pot pie. We add a bit more filling to the mix because I use a deep pan, and I also use 2 crusts because lets be honest, that's the best part... so in our home we refer to this as double crust chicken pot pie!
Full cooking directions and original recipe can be found here: Homemade Chicken Pot Pie.
So how much does it cost to make?
$8.30 at Aldi
- Pie Crust: (2 per package): $1.99
- Chicken Breasts: $3.25 (3 large pieces, roughly 1/3 the family package)
- Carrots: $0.25 (Sold in a 2lb package for $0.96)
- Celery: $0.25 ($0.69 for the hole thing)
- Minced Garlic: $0.40 (whole jar is $2.19)
- Yellow onion: $0.25 (bought 4 for $0.90)
- Parsley: $0.50 (Whole container of dried parsley is $1.19)
- Peas: $0.50 (Whole bag is $0.96)
- 4 Tablespoons Butter: $0.34
- Chicken Broth: $0.25
- 1 Cup of Milk: $0.32
- Salt/Pepper: too cheap to count.
I rounded up a lot on these prices just to make things easier. Technically the broth was free because I saved the bones from a whole chicken I had roasted in my crock pot last week and followed this recipe with what I had on hand to make my own broth/stock so I'm estimating it was about a $0.25 for the carrots, onion, celery and parsley I chucked in there with the bones.
I also cheat and use a store bought crust because to make it from scratch costs me $0.94 for each crust and since I need two to double crust this tasty meal, i'd rather spend $0.12 to save the dishes and the prep time. I do, after all, have a toddler. :) I also skipped the egg wash, but you could add that in there for $.08 since Eggs are typically $0.89 a dozen.
This recipe yields us at least 2 dinners and about 2 or 3 lunches depending on how hungry the toddler is. Generally we will pair this with it a simple salad or just eat it by itself if its a crazy night. Aldi carries bag Cesar salads with dressing, croutons and fresh Parmesan for $1.59 so even if you just grab a bag salad for a side, that's a full and complete dinner with leftovers for less than $10!
Now, if you are purchasing all the ingredients for the first time and need to initially buy each individual item (assuming you start with a bare kitchen), it will cost more. I buy my chicken in the family large packs to save some money and just freeze the leftover chicken and use it for a meal the following week, if that's not your style, you can simply buy a smaller package. You'll pay a bit more per lb, but not outrageously so because this is Aldi. Leftover Celery and Carrots can be toddler treats with ranch or peanut butter or used to flavor stock for future recipes; and who can't use a small jar of minced garlic? I know I could, lol. But in all reality, if I used the full purchase price and not just the amounts I used, we're looking at $22 and that includes a whole gallon of milk, brick of butter, and around 4 lbs of chicken.
But the key to less waste and money savings is to properly store items to use in later meals, or plan your meals for the week to use the other ingredients while still fresh.