The kids are back to school and I thought what better way to help you survive and thrive the busyness than with a 20 Meals from Costco for $150 plan that is made up of all “Gluten Free Slow Cooker Freezer Packs” where you can assemble EVERYTHING in less than 2 hours!!!

I actually videoed the entire assembly process for you…

  • To prove that it takes less than 2 hours to prepare 20 meals. The videos are 1 hour and 50 minutes long…and there is several minutes of me mumbling. And maybe doing a happy dance at the end :)
  • So that you can follow along as you assemble your bags! I didn’t want you to feel alone in your slow cooker freezer pack assembly efforts…I’ll be right there with you in the kitchen!
  • Exclusive access to the assembly video instructions is available in package #1, details below.

Before we move on, here is a link to the 20 Meals from Costco for $150 Plan’s FAQ & ‘Disclaimers’ page. If you’re new to these plans, you definitely want to check it out!

I’m often asked about my slow cooker…I use the 6-quart E-lume from Crockpot!

Here are the Wine Pairings for these meals!

OH…and BTW…this plan is also GLUTEN FREE! :)

Let’s get to it, shall we?!?

Slow Cooker Freezer Pack Costco Plan - 20 Meals for $150 in Less Than 2 Hours | 5DollarDinners.com


Recipe List

Each pack in this plan is DOUBLED. So these 10 meals make 20 packs total! Each pack serves a family of 4. Larger families or families with bottomless pits (also known as teenage boys!) can double or use 2 packs for 1 meal!

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Costco Ingredients & Price List


1 6 pack boneless, skinless chicken breasts, about 6 lbs. – $20.99
1 6 pack boneless, skinless chicken thighs, about 6 lbs. – $21.31
1 15 ct chicken apple sausage – $13.99
1 package stew beef, about 4 lbs. – $15.04
1 package pork chops, 8 count – $15.44


1 8 lb. bag white onions – $6.59
1 6 pack peppers, multi color – $6.49
1 5 lb. bag baby carrots – $5.49
1 8 lb. bags sweet potatoes – $5.99
1 15 lb. bag gold potatoes $7.99
1 5.5 lb. tray of apples – $7.59
1 24 oz. box of sliced mushrooms (optional) – $3.69

Freezer/Pantry Staples

1 5 lb. bag frozen corn – $5.99
1 12 pack of chicken broth, 16 oz. each – $9.99
8 pack diced tomatoes, 15 oz cans – $6.29
8 pack black beans, 15 oz cans – $6.79
2 pack BBQ sauce – $5.99

Total – $161.96


BBQ sauce, 1 + ½ bottle – $4 worth
4 cans black beans – $3.39 worth
Frozen corn – $3 worth
6 boxes of broth – $5 worth
about 4-5 lbs. potatoes – $2.67 worth
2 onions – $1.50 worth
= $19.56

Estimated Cost After Leftovers $142.40

(with a few dollars left to get the coconut milk & rosemary from the grocery store!)

You will also need 20 Gallon Size Freezer baggies, or other plastic containers or baggies.

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UDPATE: A kind reader pointed out that there is a need for 9 diced tomato cans and that Costco sells an 8-pack. My sincerest apologies in that discrepancy! I videoed &  assembled all of the bags with the intention of ensuring that this wouldn’t happen and somehow between my paper list and the computer list, 1 can was lost in translation! We have updated the printables. If you don’t have another on one hand, you could use half a can into each bag for one of the other recipes that calls for the tomatoes. Thanks for being gracious about this extra can of tomatoes!

Make it simple…with 1 of these 2 packages!

Let us make the experience of preparing these meals simpler and easier. There are 2 packages to choose from…

Package #1

One of the most challenging parts to pulling together a large number of meals like this at once is knowing what to do first, next, then and last. When you do things ‘out of order,’ it really can mess up the assembly process and cause you to waste a.lot of time in the kitchen.

I’ve created several new printables and instructional videos that will actually make the assembly as smooth and quick as possible for you. Seriously, I might have done a celebratory dance when I finished the assembly…and you will want to as well!

Costco Meal Plan Freezer Packs Printable Pack #1 | 5DollarDinners.com

This package includes…

  • Printable Assembly Instructions – step by step guide to pulling all these meals together and into the freezer
  • Printable Assembly Cards – so you don’t forget any ingredients in each bag
  • Printable Labels – you can print these out onto Avery #6874 label paper and stick them to your plastic baggies or containers.
  • Exclusive Access to the 3 Instructional Assembly Videos
  • Recipe List & Grocery List included as well!

All of these goodies are available to you for just 5 bucks!

(You don’t need to buy package #2 if you buy package #1, as it already includes the recipes and shopping list!)

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Download Your Plans Now!

Package #2

Just want the recipe list & grocery shopping list?! We have that available as well!

This printable that contains all the recipes with ingredient breakdown, as well as a complete grocery shopping list (with south TX Costco prices). This printable is available for $1.49!

Printable Slow Cooker Freezer Packs from Costco Pack 2

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Download Your Plans Now!


Original Costco Gluten Free Plan (this is NOT the 20 slow cooker freezer pack plan!)

Get Your Gluten Free Costco Plan!

Costco Regular Plan #1

Add to Cart ~ 20 Meals from Costco for $150 Printables

Costco Regular Plan #2

Add to Cart ~ 20 Meals from Costco for $150 Printables

You can find the Sam’s Club plans and my e-cookbooks on my new store page. Once you’ve chosen all the ones you need, you can checkout! 

NOTES: Please don’t try to download these to your phone or tablet, for a reason that I’m still trying to get an answer to, when you attempt to download straight to your phone, it causes the download link to expire automatically. I’m sorry about this and am still working on a workaround. Please download to your computer, then you can add to your ereader/phone/tablet. If you have issues with the download, PLEASE EMAIL ME! I’ll be able to help you out!

Interested in a weekly meal planning service that takes all the headache and stress off your shoulders?! Sign up for a FREE 4-Week Trial at 5DollarMealPlan.com!


Slow Cooker Carne Asada

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on September 19, 2014

Slow Cooker Carne Asada Recipe | 5DollarDinners.com

One afternoon every week, my husband and I do a kid swap in the late afternoon for one of my son’s weekly eye therapy appointments. Because I’d rather not sit in the waiting room with 3 squirrely little boys, he swings by after he leaves work and picks them up and takes them home. On those afternoons, I generally leave the slow cooker running so that when I get home from the appointment, it doesn’t take much thought or energy to get dinner onto the table.

Last week, during the swap I said that dinner was in the slow cooker and to please try not to eat it until we get home. Because I was afraid that the intense, divine smell would tempt him to open up the slow cooker and eat it all up without me.

Have you ever slow cooked a fresh garlic, cilantro, jalapeno combo over beef before?

If not, then you must.

Because the flavor of this beef is about 14x better than it smelled, which I didn’t think would be possible.

Slow Cooker Carne Asada

Here’s why it smelled and tasted so amazing.

See all of that garlic.

Slow Cooker Carne Asada

And the cilantro and a bit of heat from the jalapeño.

Slow Cooker Carne Asada

Slather it all over the meat. And be prepared for your home to be filled with an amazing aroma, all day long!

Slow Cooker Carne Asada


Perfectly tender, perfectly flavored.

You can serve this as is with a side of Tex-Mex Rice & Refried Beans. Or slice it up and serve in tacos. Completely up to you!

Here’s the recipe for the beef…enjoy!!!

Print This Post

Slow Cooker Carne Asada

Yield – 4 servings

Preparation Time – 10 minutes

Cooking Time - 8 hours


  • 1/2 cup onion
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded
  • Small bunch of cilantro
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 – 3/4 lb. flank or skirt steak
  • Salt and pepper


  • Add the onion, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro and olive oil into a small food processor or food chopper. Grind until makes a paste like spread.
  • Place the flank steaks in the base of the slow cooker and season with salt and pepper. Spread the mixture on top of the meats.
  • Set the slow cooker on low and cook for 8 hours.
  • Carefully remove from the slow cooker, as it will be very tender. Slice and serve with sides, or in tacos.


Sunday Coupon Preview – September 21

by Jenn K on September 19, 2014

Want a sneak peak at what coupons are in this Sunday’s paper?

There is scheduled to be 1 Smart Source in this weekend’s paper.

  • $1.00/2 Bertolli Imported Dessert – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/02/14)
  • $1.00/2 Bertolli Single-Serve Meal or Torta – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/02/14)
  • $0.50/4 Campbell’s Healthy Request Soups – 9-21-14 SS
  • $2.00/2 Eight O’ Clock Coffee Bags – 9-21-14 SS
  • $0.50/1 Fiber One Streusel Bars – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/15/14)
  • $1.00/2 General Mills Big G Cereals – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/01/14)
  • $1.00/2 Golden Grain Pasta Products – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/20/14)
  • $1.00/2 Golden Grain Pot-Sized Pasta – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/20/14)
  • $0.75/1 Happy Egg Co Free Range Eggs, doz – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/09/14)
  • $0.40/3 Hunts Canned Tomatoes, 14.5 oz or Larger – 9-21-14 SS
  • B1G1 Hunts Manwich, 15 oz FREE wyb (1) King’s Hawaiian Sandwich or Hamburger Buns; Maximum Value $1.25 – 9-21-14 SS
  • $0.75/1 Kozy Shack Pudding – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/30/14)
  • $0.55/1 Kraft 100% Parmesan Grated Cheese, 8 oz or Larger – 9-21-14 SS
  • $0.50/3 Marie Callenders Dessert Mini Pies or Cakes, 5.8 – 10 oz – 9-21-14 SS
  • $1.00/1 Mazola Oil or Spray Product – 9-21-14 SS
  • $0.35/1 Morton Garlic Sea Salt – 9-21-14 SS
  • $1.00/2 Muellers Pasta Products – 9-21-14 SS
  • $1.00/2 Muellers Pot Sized Pasta – 9-21-14 SS
  • $0.50/1 Nature Valley Breakfast Biscuits – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/15/14)
  • $0.30/2 Pillsbury Refrigerated Grands Biscuits – 9-21-14 SS (exp 12/13/14)
  • $0.40/3 Pillsbury Refrigerated Grands or Grands Jr Biscuits – 9-21-14 SS
  • B3G1 Rotel Tomatoes, 10 oz FREE wyb (3) Avocados; Maximum Value $1.49 – 9-21-14 SS
  • $1.00/1 Tropicana Farmstand Bottle, 46 oz; Excludes Trop50 and Tropicana Pure Premium – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/30/14)
  • $1.00/1 Tyson Grilled & Ready Frozen Product – 9-21-14 SS
  • $0.40/1 Wolf Brand Chili – 9-21-14 SS
  • $0.50/8 Yogurt Yogurt Cups – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/15/14)
  • $1.00/5 Yoplait Greek or Greek 100 Yogurt – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/15/14)
  • $1.00/2 Ziploc Bags – 9-21-14 SS (exp 11/09/14)

Learn more about how the Coupon Preview can help you spend less at the grocery store!



12 Best Chili Recipes

by Jenn K on September 18, 2014

12 Best Chili Recipes from 5DollarDinners.com

There is nothing that celebrates the taste of fall more to me than a good bowl of chili.  Even though we do eat chili year-round, there is something special about a steaming hot bowl of chili with brisk temperatures outside.  In honor of nearing that lovely time of year, we’ve gathered up the 12 Best Chili Recipes on $5 Dinners (although you can actually find a dozen more if you wanted to look!):


  1. Butternut Squash Chili

  2. Chicken Enchilada Chili

  3. Chili with Cornbread Waffles

  4. Chuckwagon Chili with Pasta

  5. Corn & Chicken Chili

  6. Heat ‘n Sweet Chili

    spicy southern chili 7

  7. Pumpkin Chili

  8. Sausage Chili

  9. Slow Cooker Chili with Skillet Cornbread

  10. Spicy 15 Bean Chili

  11. Spicy Southern Chili in Homemade Bread Bowls

  12. White Chicken Chili Stuffed Potatoes

What does your family prefer when it comes to chili?  With meat or without?  With beans or without?  Topped with cheese, sour cream, chives or bare?  Share with us in the comments below!

See more recipes on our Chili Pinterest Board here:

Follow $5 Dinners’ board 101 Chili Recipes on Pinterest.


Checkout 51: Save on Bananas, Nature Valley Protein Granola, Tabasco Sauce + More

September 18, 2014

New coupons have been added to the free coupon app, Checkout 51, including savings on the following items: Bananas, any fresh = Cash back 25¢ Nature Valley™ Protein Granola, any = Cash back $1 SnackWell’s products, any 3.9 oz or larger = Cash back 75¢ TABASCO® brand Pepper Sauce Flavors, any = Cash back 75¢ […]

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Cheddar Apple Bacon Bites with Rosemary Dressing

September 17, 2014

If you’re interested in a throwing party for your taste buds, try these. I used a tart granny smith apple…because I wanted the tart flavor, but I think a sweeter variety could work with these too. Plus, bacon. BACON. Bacon + cheese + apple + garlic rosemary spread + pretzel bun. Excuse me while I […]

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Natural and Organic Deals: Plum Organics, Organic K-cups and more!

September 16, 2014

Check out the latest natural and organic deals….. Deals on Amazon Save a total of 35% off on Plum Organics baby food pouches when you clip an Amazon coupon + save an additional 15% off on any baby food pouches when you also choose the Subscribe and Save Option. Clip a 20% Amazon coupon on Gerber Organic Baby Food to score Brown […]

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Slow Cooker Sweet Potato & Chickpea Curry

September 15, 2014

This right there y’all…is what you call a delicious, hearty, filling vegetarian dish that even meat lovers will love! I prepped this in the slow cooker because I wanted the chickpeas and the sweet potatoes to soak for a long time in the curried broth. And boy, oh boy…my tastebuds are grateful that I slow […]

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Kellogg’s, McCormick, Mott’s, Starbucks, Newman’s Own, Rudi’s Organic + More Printable Coupons

September 15, 2014
Thumbnail image for Kellogg’s, McCormick, Mott’s, Starbucks, Newman’s Own, Rudi’s Organic + More Printable Coupons

Here are some of the latest and hottest printable coupons to help you save on groceries this week! Food Household Personal Care Be sure to check out all the printable coupons available at Red Plum, Smart Source, Coupon Network and Coupons.com! Looking for a coupon for an item on your shopping list? Or a coupon […]

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Berry Cherry Jubilee ~ Green Smoothie Recipe

September 14, 2014

This summer, I had the pleasure of meeting the duo behind the very popular Simple Green Smoothies. I drool over their Instagram feed every day. And often end up making something similar to what they posted for my morning smoothie. (Or my lunch smoothie, when I have ‘those’ mornings and I can’t get to blending […]

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Updated! Grocery Coupon Match-Ups – Week of September 14

September 14, 2014

{Pin by clicking the Pinterest Button below!} This is your weekly (and friendly) reminder to check out the latest coupon matchups for the following grocery stores, drugstores, and big box & warehouse stores like Target and Costco…click on each link to find the current deals, coupon matchups and extra savings offers! Grocery Stores Aldi Dollar […]

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