Dream Dinners vs. Do it Yourself

This is a great story from one of our wonderful customers. Based on a challenge from her husband to save money, she sets out to  prove to him the value beyond just the cost savings. Thank you to Ginny for sharing her story!

My husband has recently retired, and of course we have taken quite a hit in the stock market lately and all I seem to hear from him is budget, budget, budget.  He “ANNOUNCES” that he thinks I can do Dream Dinners cheaper by doing it myself.  I decided to find out.   I found an online site that for a subscription fee of $10 a month will send you 10 recipes a month, with a shopping list and preparation instructions to fix all at once and freeze.  So we are off and running with our test.

Base Point
My last Trip to Dream Dinners, on September 22nd 2011, I spent $4.16 per serving and 2 hours of my time including the drive there and back.

Wednesday morning
I spent about 45 minutes going through my pantry and setting out the items that I already had that were on the shopping list.  I then went through 3 grocery store ads looking for which store had the most items on the shopping list on sale.  I only wanted to go to one store.  (Albertson’s won because chicken was half price.)

Thursday morning
Grocery store shopping, from the time I left the house till the time I got back was 1 hr, and 20 minutes.  I only bought items on the list, and only bought the size or quantity that would provide what I needed.  My total bill was $131.69.  While I was shopping I had my husband price out the items I had on hand, they totaled $32.47. I then need to add in the $10 subscription fee.  The recipes will make 10 chicken dinners, 4 servings each.  If you had nothing on hand and had to buy everything it would be $4.35 a serving, with what I had on hand it cost me $3.54 a serving.

Friday morning
Got started at 11:15, the recipe list provided instructions such as chop 4 cups worth of onions, slice ½ cup of bell pepper, cube 2 pounds chicken meat, cut  1 ½ lbs chicken meat into strips, and so forth.  To do all 10 recipes start to finish including clean up, and boy did I have the clean up, was 5 hours and 17 minutes.  I did have to send my husband to the store for another onion.  It took a little longer than it might have as since the recipes were for 4 servings, I bagged them for 2.


  • 36 servings at Dream Dinners $4.16 a serving and 2 hours of my time.
  • 40 servings by doing it myself $4.35 / $3.54 and 7 hrs, 22 mins. of my time.

As far as I am concerned, it was no contest.  Dream Dinners is the definite winner.

If you would like to save hours out of your week and some money on dinner preparation try Dream Dinners. Find a location near you today