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Take the hassle out of meal planning

Take the hassle out of meal planning
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According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the average family of four spends $167 to $255 per week on groceries, and costs are expected to continue to rise. This trend only adds to the popular belief that you can't feed a large family while sticking to a budget. Even couples and individuals find it hard.

But what if you could? What if there was an easy way to relieve the headache of meal planning by having nutritious, budget-friendly recipes sent to you directly? Well, there is!

With four children and a husband, Erin Chase also struggled to find a simple, cost-effective way to feed her family. In 2008, she began using coupons to save money on groceries and noticed huge savings immediately. As the savings continued to stack up, Chase began challenging herself to create meals for less than $5, and now shares hundreds of ideas and recipes on her website, 5dollardinners.com.

Whether you need a few tips, or full-blown meal plans, $5 Dinners was designed to help simplify your life. The site offers cooking tutorials, meal plans and a full recipe index, featuring: recipes for lunches; gluten-free, vegetarian and paleo diets; slow cooker meals; and more. There are also countless tips on cooking and couponing available through the site's free weekly newsletter and blog.

If you'd like additional help, sign up for a weekly subscription to receive full recipes, an itemized shopping list, and even labels to help organize your pantry. Subscriptions range from $2.50 to $7 per week, depending on the services you choose, which means you won't pay for services you'll never use.

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