This Aldi Haul Cost Less than $50 — And Here’s What I Made with It All

updated Sep 7, 2019
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Credit: Patty Catalano

When I can’t find two minutes, let alone two hours, to meal prep on the weekend, I let Aldi take on that task. Aldi is my go-to for finding quality groceries on a budget, and by combining quirky prepared foods with grocery staples, I can cook a week’s worth of homemade meals without investing hours on an already too-short weekend.

Here’s what I made with my Aldi groceries this week. The entire haul cost me less than $50.

Credit: Logo: Aldi, Design: Kitchn
Credit: Patty Catalano

Monday: Instant Pot Spaghetti

I eased into the week with this family favorite. Kitchn’s Associate Food Editor, Meghan Splawn, shared this recipe last December, and in the months since, it has become a cult-favorite, even earning its own love letter. My kids adore the silky sauce and I love that it is a hands-off, one-pot meal. This week I’m substituting ground turkey for the ground beef and using dried herbs I already have in my pantry, but Aldi has a fully stocked aisle of seasonings if you need to replenish your spices. Aldi has several in-house brands of marinara sauce, and I’m trying them all to find my favorite. When it was time to cook, I layered the ingredients in the Instant Pot, then I got to the important work of practicing sight words with my newly minted kindergartener.

Get the recipe: Instant Pot Spaghetti

Credit: Patty Catalano

Tuesday: Shrimp Tostadas

Taco Tuesday usually means quesadillas for the kids and taco salads for the grown-ups. As I grabbed the pasta sauce for Monday’s spaghetti dinner, I felt inspired by a bag of crispy tostadas on the shelf below. I added a package of shrimp fajita fixings from the freezer case to my cart. (If you’re seafood-averse, there’s a chicken fajita kit just a few steps away in the refrigerated section.) At dinnertime I quickly cooked the shrimp and peppers, layered them onto the tostadas, and finished with fresh salsa and queso fresco.

Credit: Products: Aldi, Plates: Patty Catalano
Credit: Patty Catalano

Wednesday, Chicken Tikka Masala

I fell hard for Aldi with my first bite of their Journey to India Tikka Masala Simmer Sauce, and the warm (but not spicy!) spices have made it a family favorite. For dinner I first cut boneless, skinless chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces and browned them in a skillet. Once both sides of the chicken were browned, I added the entire jar of sauce and simmered everything until the chicken was cooked. I spooned the saucy chicken over brown basmati rice and finished it with some chopped fresh cilantro from my patio garden.

Credit: Patty Catalano

Thursday: Sausage, Tomato, and Kale Quinoa Bowls

My introduction to frozen kale and quinoa came from my Costco-sized Power Hour. But my freezer is at max capacity, so I haven’t purchased the kale and quinoa in months until I spied a smaller quantity at Aldi. For Thursday’s quick dinner I browned sliced Never Any! Italian-style chicken sausage in a skillet, then added a pint of grape tomatoes and cooked them just until they burst. I spooned the sausage and tomato mixture over hot quinoa and kale (which took just three minutes in the microwave!).

Credit: Patty Catalano

Friday: Garlicky Naan Pizzas

My little ones were wrapping up their first weeks of school, so we swapped our regular Friday night out for pizza and Wild Kratts on the couch. Garlic naan is my favorite shortcut for easy personal pizzas. I scoured Aldi’s shelves for a fresh bruschetta topping to no avail, so I added a new-to-me red pesto. (One thing you learn as an Aldi shopper is to flex your creativity on the fly.) Priano’s Rosso Pesto Sauce is made with sun dried tomatoes, basil, and Italian cheese — a good option for pizza night. I spread the pesto over garlic naan and topped it with 1/4-inch slices of fresh mozzarella and baked the whole thing at 400°F until the crust browned and the cheese melted. I topped with torn fresh basil before serving.

What’d you get on your most recent Aldi haul? How much (or how little!) did you spend?