Friday, July 21, 2017

Friday Night Dinners

I believe that a lot of people eat out on Friday night. So Hubby and I are challenging ourselves to have  very nice meals on Friday nights at home. We have been spending too many nights eating out and that is costing us a lot of money. 

So starting tonight we are going to have delicious Friday night dinners at home which will cost us a whole lot less than what it costs us to eat out. 

Tonight we are having a shrimp dish. It is:
Shrimp Fra Diavolo which we love and we have talked about on here before. 

I purchased the raw shrimp on sale for $ 6.99. It was a lb. and I am using it all. 

The rest of the ingredients are pictured here. The onion was purchased in a 5 lb. bag that cost $ 1.99. There was 10 onions in the bag. So that cost me $. 20. The spices I pretty much buy cheaply in bulk so I will estimate those at $ .15. The wine was a cup out of a gallon jug so maybe $.50. I am estimating the oil at $.25, the garlic at $ .15, and the tomatoes were $ .45. The spaghetti was $ 1.00 at Dollar Tree for 24 oz. so I used 6 ounces that cost $ .24.

So the main entree cost us $ 8.93 or about $ 4.47 each. A similar dish at our local family owned restaurant would have cost us $ 19.99 each. 

I had a Caesar Salad Kit that I got for $2.00 that needed to be used up. I saved 1/2 of it for tomorrow night and mixed up the other half. So the salad cost us $1.00 or $ .50 each. The salad would have been included in the entree at the restaurant.

A glass of Moscato for each of us cost us about $ 1.50. At the restaurant it would have been $ 5.00 a glass.

I made boxed garlic bread that I got on a coupon deal for $.42 a box. I made 2 slices so I spent $.10 for both of us. At the restaurant it would have cost us $ 2.00 for garlic bread.

Lastly I made milk chocolate pudding that cost me $ .25 a box for 4 servings. Two servings cost us about $ .13. I added a dollop of whipped cream to the pudding and that cost about $.20 for both of us. At the restaurant it would have cost us $3.99 for each pudding.

So the entire dinner cost us $ 11.86 for both of us. At the restaurant it would have cost us $ 59.96 + $ 4.80 in tax and another $12.00 for a tip for a total of $ 76.76. We saved $64.90 by staying home if we had ordered the same items. I say that because I believe it would have cost us more because we would have been tempted to order something more expensive like creme brulee for dessert. 

The best part is that we had enough leftover for dinner tomorrow night. I love leftovers. I will just have to make some more bread, the other 1/2 salad and pour us each another glass of wine. I already have the chocolate pudding so the extras will cost us an additional $ 1.93. If I add that to the cost of our meal tonight which was $ 11.86, the total for both meals will be $ 13.79. Even if I estimated the cost a little low, we have saved a fortune.

I love that I can make a delicious meal for much less than a restaurant meal. I did the cooking so Hubby did the dishes. I will be doing this every Friday instead of going out. I would much rather invest the savings than give it to the restaurant. 

Does this mean that we will never go out? Nope, I still have lots of restaurant and take out gift cards. But we will be cutting back because I just don't like spending so much money eating out. It can be invested for more important things.

The other advantage of cooking at home is that I know my kitchen is clean and that my hands are clean. 

Anyone interested in doing this challenge with me?      


  1. We've been doing this for a long time. Steak dinners at home are so much cheaper than out.

    1. Hi Rozy,

      You are so right. I think steak will be on the menu this coming Friday night.

  2. Your next to the last sentence says it all for me. Sometimes, when I eat out, I cringe wondering where those hands have been and did they drop part of my meal on the floor.

  3. That is always on my mind when we go out to eat!