21 Freezer Cooking Meals from Costco for $150 | 5DollarDinners.com

Y’all. Can we chat for a minute?! I am completely blown away by how much y’all love these plans. Seriously, THANK YOU for sharing these plans, buying the plans, emailing me, sharing on Instagram and Facebook and for whatever way you spread the word about these meal plans. I’m filled with gratitude and will continue to work hard to provide great meal plans for you….including this next one.

I absolutely adore the meals and recipes that are in this plan. If I had to make a list of our family’s top 20 meals, all of these would be on that list. These are tried and true recipes, some that have been around for years and other newbies that will not disappoint. I wanted to add a note that these are NOT the same as the slow cooker freezer packs from the last plan…these are sauces and roasts with marinades and other dishes that are freezer friendly! I’ve pieced together another amazing plan with favorite recipes that will not disappoint!

And to answer the burning question of why these dinners are more than your typical $5 price point…I realize this makes for roughly $7.50 dinners. Meat at Costco is more expensive than sale prices at grocery stores, and many argue that the quality is better, which according to their policy of only carrying Choice and Prime grade meat makes sense!  If you have other questions about these plans, you can learn more on our 20 Meals from Costco for $150 Plan’s FAQ & ‘Disclaimers’ page.

Before we get to the plan, I need to share the MAJOR IMPROVEMENTS that we’ve made to the plans and to the website…

  • We have a new store and you can purchase everything you need right here within the site. No more being taken away to a weird place that looks like it’s straight out of a bad 1990’s internet movie to make your purchases. You are going to luv-it!
  • We now take credit cards through the new store. Wa-hooo!
  • We made dramatic changes to the Assembly Process & Instructions and they will be much more clear for you to use as you assemble and cook the meals in this plan.
  • We had a professional come in to shoot the videos of the assembly process…no more blurry screen and difficult times hearing me…the downside of shooting videos in your kitchen from my laptop! I brought the big guns in and you’re going to love these exclusive videos (and all the ‘live bloopers’ too)!
  • We are offering a gluten-free version of this plan.

Gluten Free Freezer Cooking Plan - 20 Meals from Costco for $150 on 5DollarDinners.com

Now, let’s dig into the plan….

21 Freezer Cooking Meals from Costco | 5DollarDinners.com

Recipe List

Each recipe serves a family of 4. Larger families or families with bottomless pits (also known as teenage boys!) will need to adjust the plans and ingredient amounts to meet your family’s needs.

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Costco Plan Promo Ingredients 2

Costco Ingredients & Price List

  • 2 – 5ish lb. packs ground beef – $20.65 & $19.72
  • 1 – 4 pack pork roasts, about 8 lbs. total or 2 lbs. per roast – $19.72
  • 3 – 3 lb. rotisserie chickens – $4.99 each, $14.97
  • 36 ct. bag Costco dinner rolls – $4.49
  • 100 ct. corn tortillas – $3.19
  • 15 lbs. gold potatoes – $7.49
  • Salad – 2 clamshells – $3.99 each, $7.98
  • 1 – 5 lb. bag frozen mixed vegetables – $6.69
  • 1 – 5 lb. bag frozen broccoli -$6.29
  • 1 – 5 lb. bag frozen green beans – $6.79
  • 1 – 5 lb. bag frozen corn – $5.99
  • 2 pack – 45 oz. bottles BBQ sauce – $5.99
  • 12 pack – 15 oz. cans tomato sauce – $7.59
  • 8 pack – 15 oz. cans black beans – $6.79
  • 2 pack – 67 oz. jars spaghetti sauce – $7.49
  • 6 pack – 1 lb. pasta noodles – $6.59
  • 2 lb. cheese block, Monterey Jack variety – $5.99

Total – $164.41

Anticipated Leftovers

  • 28 corn tortillas $1
  • 3-5 lbs. potatoes $2
  • BBQ Sauce $3
  • Spaghetti Sauce $2
  • 1 lb. pasta noodles $1
  • 2 cans black beans $1
  • 4 cans tomato sauce $2

Estimated Cost After Leftovers $152.41

There are a variety of additional items you’ll need to have stocked in your pantry or purchase at the grocery store like chicken broth, butter, eggs, milk, spices, etc.  All of these items are too expensive to purchase at Costco or come in way bigger containers than needed for these 21 meals.

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Make it simple…with 1 of these 2 packages!

Let us make the experience of preparing these meals simpler and easier. We have a new store and you can now use Paypal or credit card to purchase your meal plans. There are 2 packages to choose from…

Costco Meal Plans #5 from 5DollarDinners.com

Complete Package

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!  This package includes…

Costco Full Pack Image

Complete Package – Printable Recipes, Grocery List & Assembly Instructions

  • Printable Assembly Instructions – step by step guide to pulling all these meals together and into the freezer
  • Printable Labels – you can print these out onto Avery #6874 label paper and stick them to your plastic baggies or containers.
  • Instructional Assembly Videos – exclusive access!
  • Full Recipes & Grocery List Printables are included as well

Basic Package

Costco Meal Plan #5 from 5DollarDinners.com

Basic Package – Printable Recipes & Grocery List Only

  • Printable Recipes
  • Printable Shopping List
  • You don’t need to purchase this if you purchase the Complete Package above!

You can find the ALL of the Costco Meal Plan Printables, plus Sam’s Club Meal Plans and my E-Cookbooks in the new store page. Once you’ve chosen all the ones you need, you can checkout and get all the printable at once!

NOTES: Please download these files directly to your computer within 72 hours, then you can add to your e-reader/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!


Thanksgiving Most Couponable Holiday Feast

I’m a connecter. And I love connecting people with people. And people with new recipes to try. And people with great ways to give back. This is one of the things that I’ve learned about myself as I’ve emerged as a blogger, author, blogger coach and event coordinator…I just love people and connecting them with what they need to help them move forward on whatever path that is before them.

Just last week, I connected a friend who is a speaker, author and authority in the homeschool space with another friend who is a hilarious blogger, memoir author…who both just so happen to have the same literary agent but had not connected yet. What those 2 could pull of together, I can’t wait to see what it is…connection is powerful.

With the blogging events that I’ve coordinated over the past 5 years, our motto has always been and always will be…create win-win situations for all parties involved – speakers, partners, attendees. Same philosophy goes when I’m working and consulting with other companies in the online and grocery deals space. Win-win.

Connecting people and creating win-win scenarios. Plus helping people spend less money on their groceries through coupons and meal plans, my other passion. Put these two together and my heart is literally bursting!

When this fantastic holiday giving opportunity came through my inbox, I gladly jumped at the chance to share it with you. To connect you with it. So what’s this crazy opportunity all about…

JMS_FeedingAmerica 1

On November 2, there will be coupons in national newspapers for Crisco and Pillsbury products that help you share the goodness this season and make every meal matter.

For every Crisco and Pillsbury coupon redeemed, The J.M Smucker Co. will donate the equivalent of three meals to Feeding America.

Every $1 helps provide 10 meals secured by Feeding America on behalf of local member food banks. The J.M Smucker Co. has committed to provide up to six million meals ($600,000 donation) to Feeding America and will make a minimum donation of 4.5 million meals (a $450,000 donation).

But I’m really not about ‘minimum donations’…I’m all about hitting that SIX MILLION MEAL MARK.

We’ll consider this the kickoff for our annual holiday feast coupon round up…but with these coupons, we get to help so many people who are in need this holiday season with meals from Feeding America. This holiday season, you have the opportunity to help families who struggle with hunger, while also creating more memorable meals and moments of your own…because every meal matters! Seriously, #everymealmatters!

Before we get to the fun part about saving and giving, I wanted to share a few tips on spending less on your holiday feast with you (and I’ll be sharing some other ones on my Twitter, Instagram & Facebook accounts over the next few days…like a savings tips scavenger hunt!). You can also find some great tips and ideas on my #everymealmatters Pinterest board!

Tip #1

When it comes to holiday feast shopping, wait until the week of the feast to get the very lowest prices on all your ingredients. If you’re worried about braving the crowds, sneak into the store early in the morning or late at night to take advantage of all the great sales.

Tip #2

Use my $5 concept for your holiday feast$5 per person, if you are hosting and preparing the meal, or $5 per side dish that you plan on bringing to the feast. If you are having 12 people around your table, plan what you can make for $60 and then ask others to bring the other parts of the meal so you don’t have to take on the total cost of the meal. If you are bringing a side dish, play the sales and coupon game to get the ingredients you need to make the side for under $5.

Tip #3

Write down EVERYTHING you’ll need on a piece of paper or add your shopping list to your favorite app and then hit the store. All the shiny bells and whistles that stores put out during the holidays can easily distract you from getting only what you went into the store to purchase. Challenge yourself to not purchase ANYTHING that’s NOT.ON.THE.LIST!

Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to see my other tips and tricks!

So what do you have to do?

Check your local papers THIS Sunday, November 2, for Crisco® and Pillsbury® coupons that help you share the goodness this season and make every meal matter…for you and for someone elase!

Use the coupons that come out in this weekend’s newspaper…Clip and redeem and save big on holiday feast ingredients!

And then a donation will be made based on the coupon redemption. Easy, peasy.


You save, someone else gets a meal. We all do this together and a whole lotta people get a meal from Feeding America and The J.M Smucker Co! Win-Win! Everybody’s happy!

Visit Power of Family Meals for more information!

Now, let’s work together friend to get those 6 million meals donated!!!

xoxo ~ Erin

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of The J.M. Smucker Company & Feeding America.


Checkout 51: Save on Bacon, Bananas and more!

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on October 30, 2014

Checkout 51 Savings on Bacon, Bananas, and more | 5dollardinners.com

Checkout 51 is changing things up a bit, and I’m excited to share the news with you! For the month of November, members get to choose one of their weekly offers!

On the offer list, you’ll see an offer called “Pick your own offer.” Tapping it reveals a bunch of offers you can choose from, and once chosen, it’ll automatically be added to your list.  All the offers featured this week are part of the “Pick your own offer.”

New coupons have been added to the free coupon app, Checkout 51, including savings on the following items:

  • Bacon, 8 oz or larger, excludes pre-cooked and bacon snacks = cash back 25¢
  • Bananas, excludes frozen = cash back 25¢
  • Lettuce, any whole head, excludes salad mixes = cash back 25¢
  • Oranges, excludes canned oranges = cash back 25¢
  • Tomatoes, any fresh, excludes canned = cash back 25¢
Check out the free grocery app, Favado, to see where Bacon, Bananas, Lettuce, Oranges and Tomatoes are on sale for you to save this week!

Sign up and save with Checkout 51 today!

Remember that some offers are regional, but the more you use Checkout 51, the more offers will be available to you.

See all the details to maximize your savings with Checkout 51 here!


Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls ~ 31 Days of Freezer Friendly Recipes

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on October 29, 2014

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls Recipe on 5DollarDinners.com

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls. Double Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls. But really, they are triple pumpkin cinnamon rolls.








The dough is so soft. The pumpkin filling literally melts in your mouth with the dough…and the pumpkin spice icing.

You HAVE TO make these at some point this fall or winter. It’s a command, really ;)

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 1

Dough cycle in the bread machine.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 2

Divide and knead.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 3

Roll ‘em.

Tyler is an excellent sous chef…he’s always wanting to help me in the kitchen!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 4


Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 5

Thin layer pure pumpkin.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 6


Brown sugar. Don’t be shy.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 7

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice. Don’t be shy again.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 8

Ready to roll.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 9

Roll as tight as you can.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 10


Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 11

Place in baking dishes. Let rise an hour in a warm place.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 12

Post-rising. Bake.

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls 13



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Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

Yield – 24-26 rolls

Preparation Time – 3 hours

Cooking Time – 20 minutes


  • 1 1/2 cups warm milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 Tbsp yeast
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • Filling
  • Couple Tbsp butter
  • about 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • about 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • about 1 Tbsp homemade pumpkin pie spice
  • Icing
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp homemade pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 Tbsp pumpkin puree
  • Milk, 1/4 tsp at a time


  • Add the dough ingredients into the bread machine in the order they are listed and set on the dough cycle.*
  • Once the dough cycle is complete, add the dough to a clean and floured countertop and turn the dough, kneading it until smooth. Divide into 2 balls and roll out into 2 rectangles.
  • Spread thin layer of butter, then pumpkin puree, then brown sugar and spice mix. Roll tightly and then slice into 1″ inch wide rolls.
  • Place the rolls into greased baking dishes, leaving a little space between the rolls for them to expand and rise. Cover with dishtowel and let rise for an hour in a warm place in your kitchen.
  • Preheat oven to 350. After the rolls have risen, bake for 16-20 minutes, or until middle rolls are cooked through.
  • Prepare icing by mixing the powdered sugar with the spice mix, then gently stir in the pumpkin puree. Finally, add milk, 1/4 tsp at a time, mixing well until icing forms consistency you prefer.
  • Add icing to the tops of the rolls and serve warm.
  • *If you don’t have a bread machine, you can make the bread by hand. In a small bowl, add the milk, sugar and yeast and let it proof. In a large mixing bowl, add the beaten egg and pumpkin puree, salt and then pour in the milk-yeast mixture and gently combine. Add the flour, one cup at a time, stirring into a wet dough, then into more of a dry dough. Cover with dishtowel and let rise in warm place. Once the dough is ready, complete directions listed above.


31 Days of Freezer Cooking Recipes: Hawaiian Meatloaf

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Here’s another $5 Dinners fan favorite! For me, it’s the tangy and subtly sweet flavor within the meatloaf and in the sauce that bakes on top! I usually make a double batch anytime I prepare meatloaf…one to bake for dinner and one to freeze. I prefer to freeze them raw, but you can certainly cook […]

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Featured Pinterest Board: Potatoes

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I think one of the most popular comfort foods has got to be potatoes.  They are so versatile, inexpensive, and yes, while they are high in carbs, they actually contain a variety of vitamins and nutrients that are healthy for you!  Besides, most of the time, it’s not the potatoes that are the high calorie […]

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20 Fresh & Easy Freezer Meals for $150 – FREE Meal Plan Printables!

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A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to travel to Los Angeles and spend some time in the Fresh & Easy grocery store in Manhattan Beach, CA. They’ve tasked me with coming up with a meal plan for 20 freezer meals for $150…and I gladly accepted the challenge! Take a peek at the video […]

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Swiffer Printable Coupons: Save $5

October 27, 2014
Thumbnail image for Swiffer Printable Coupons: Save $5

There are a variety of new Swiffer printable coupons to help you keep your kitchen sparkling clean… 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 for your favorite product? Be […]

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31 Days of Freezer Cooking Recipes: Slow Cooker Cranberry Apple Pork Roast

October 26, 2014

Flavors of fall will swirl all around your home, as this pork roast with cranberries and apples cooks the day away in the slow cooker. You can use a 12 oz. bag of fresh cranberries with about 1/2 cup of brown sugar in place of the canned cranberries. We’ve made it both ways and they […]

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Updated! Grocery Coupon Match-Ups – Week of October 26

October 26, 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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31 Days of Freezer Cooking Recipes: Black Bean & Corn Slow Cooker Enchiladas

October 25, 2014

OK, last set of enchiladas, I promise! These enchiladas were one of the recipes that I featured on my recent Today Show appearance…and they are getting rave reviews from those in our $5 Meal Plan private Facebook group! The reason that we’ve had so many enchiladas as part of this month’s 31 Days of Freezer […]

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