That’s our challenge to each other. Sam and I spend a fortune on food. Like, we don’t even want to add it up because it probably equals the budget of a small country.
So the other day we decided to make a drastic change – to spend only $81.66 a week on food. Period. This comes out to just under $350 in a 30 day month.
However, the catch is the majority of it has to be homecooked, healthy, and natural/organic. Because it would be really easy to load up on $81.60 of Velveeta Shells and Cheese and potato chips. We are only shopping at Sprouts, so that helps with the junk food cravings.
I figured we would get to the store, go into food coma mode, and leave with $135 in groceries and give up.
So I sat down and made a meal plan.The picture below was dinner for the week – I didn’t bother writing out lunch or breakfast because Sam isn’t here most of the time and I knew some of those dinners would have leftovers.
I did put items for breakfast and lunch on the grocery list though. Also, things like milk, cheese, bread, eggs – all the staples. Bella’s food too – I make all her meals, and often she can have what we are having before I put a lot of spices or salt in.
Meal Plan –
Sprouts has a double Wednesday deal – you get all last weeks and the current weeks food on sale on Wednesday only. However, we don’t use coupons, so whatever is on sale and in season we buy. That’s it.
We took our store list, and added it all up the best we could to see what an estimate of our bill would be. It came out to around $80 – and I had rounded up on everything and included tax.
We stuck strictly to our list. I panicked at the end – our cart was barely half full and we had only spent 30 minutes in the store. Where was the heaping grocery pile? The exhaustion and screaming child? This wasn’t grocery shopping – it was some kind of food deprivation tactic!
We got everything on the list, and it came out to $75.
Fresh fruit, organic beef and chicken, tons of veggies, cheese, Indian food – breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.
And I never went back to the store the rest of the week for “touch ups”. You know what I’m talking about. Target is a “touch up” place that ends up costing us a car payment.
Every night we had a homecooked meal. Each one took a prep of 15-20 minutes. Right now we’re grilling up the pizza with topping left from the fajitas and excess veggies not used during the week.
This week? Things are a little trickier because we don’t have an overflow of food from weeks past when we bought way too much. But I’m committed to making this work. I know what it’s going to take, and I am planning right now to go tomorrow and spend under $81.66 with tax.
Wish me luck. I’ll let you know how it goes. I’d love any tips or recipes you have.