Author Topic: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget  (Read 80715 times)

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #250 on: February 25, 2018, 08:46:28 PM »
Did some errands today:

Sprouts:


Pork shoulder (12.5lb): $12.38
Green pepper: $1.00
Asparagus (~2lb): $2.01
Lettuce: $.50
Red pepper: $2.00
Celery: $.98
Cucumbers: $1.50
Strawberries (2lb): $1.96

Total receipt = $22.33. Strawberries were $.98/lb! And asparagus was on sale again! And pork shoulder was $.99/lb! And lettuce was 2/$1! So many good sales!

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Walmart:


Corn tortillas: $2.28

Total receipt = $2.28.

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #251 on: February 25, 2018, 09:35:32 PM »
We ate all the leftovers during the week, so I had to make something tonight. I made jambalaya again, that way I could put some up in the freezer-- it worked REALLY well to pull out and reheat, so I wanted to make sure I had some more on hand.

Also, I used up the last of my rice! AHH! Panic! But seriously. I'm thinking about taking my 5-gallon bucket to Sprouts next time it's on sale and just having them fill it up with rice. I hate running out of staples.

1 med-large onion: $0 (leftover)
1oz minced garlic: $.10
4 large stalks celery: ~$.20
1 green pepper: $.50
1 red pepper: $.50
1lb Italian sausage: $1.99
8oz tomato sauce: $.25
Chicken broth (~2 cups to go with tomato sauce, plus ~3.25 cups to cook the rice):
~1lb brown rice: $.79

~8oz strawberries for dessert: $.50

Total cost for dinner + a freezer meal's worth of leftovers = $4.83. Also, it was delicious. Omnomnom.

Mtngrl

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #252 on: February 26, 2018, 07:27:06 AM »
I hear you on the 5 gallons of rice. I tend to keep big stocks of items I use a lot -- buy when the price is low. We are staying with my in-laws right now (FIL in hospital) and I'm doing most of the cooking. My MIL has always shopped every couple of days, just buying what she needs for meals -- and thus, has very little in her cabinets. It's driving me nuts because I'm used to looking in the pantry and freezer and basing meals on what's available. This seems so much more expensive.

mm1970

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #253 on: February 26, 2018, 10:42:14 AM »
I agree, those are some great prices!
This week's deals at sprouts are amazing!!  I went nuts.

Sometimes I have to restrain myself from buying ALL the good sales, because I absolutely hate buying beautiful produce and having it wither in the fridge waiting to get used (or having it go bad, that's even worse).
We eat a lot of produce.  I could never hit your $200 budget simply because of that.  But on good Sprouts sales weeks, it just means I eat even MORE produce. 

So, 3 lb instead of 2!

A cup of fruit for breakfast, a cup for a snack, a very large salad for lunch (3-4 cups of veg), some cooked veg as a snack (brussels!!), and then another cup for dinner.  At least.  Dinner tonight is this yummy lentil carrot soup with veggies plus leftover sweet & sour cabbage and kale chips.

I think I have a veg problem.

Goldielocks

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #254 on: February 26, 2018, 12:55:10 PM »
Okay,  I am quite happy to have gotten our food budget down to $540/mo last month...  It still sounds quite high.. but..

Qualifiers

    For 4, essentially all adults, two are heavy eaters and third is extremely large eater - active teenage boy, who is hard to cook enough food for, and goes to pre-packaged anything as first choice instead of leftovers.   So, let's just say 2x the people as OP.

      We have been eating through the freezer / canning jars for fruit and vegetables (beets, carrots, squash, roasted peppers, canned fruits), and onions / potatoes, fresh apples and bananas, one head of lettuce. 

    DH and I ate out 4 meals this past month (went away for birthday).  (26 days of food, not 30)

   That's  Cdn (1.25x exchange) and 15% price markup across the border..

So...   $540 x half (number of mouths) / 1.25 (exchange rate) / 1.15 (geographic markup) x 30/26 (days of food) = US$216 for the month.

WOW!   Did i get to the magic number?!



Honestly, we have not eaten as much yogurt and fruits and vegetables as we normally would with our dinners, (It is very $$$$ last month)... There has been ramen for lunch some days for the teenagers, and egg-only dinners, waffles (without any fruit or veg).   We had ground beef only 2x (from freezer supply and waiting for sale to get it at $3/lb)...  It's been a lot of roast chicken or pork with a side of home-canned applesauce and few pieces of beets, maybe with potatoes or rice.  Pasta with tomato sauce and dried beans...   I also did not buy many drink cans for DS to take to school, or luncheon meats so he has been pushing for more than just lunches with water, banana and pb sandwiches.   We maintained our cold cereal habit, though.   

I don't think this is sustainable, for us, but in the mid summer, the fruits and veg come down in price so I could repeat for about 3 months around then... of course, family starts to want hotdogs and hamburgers in the summer, which I do find to be a pricier meal.

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #255 on: February 26, 2018, 06:38:37 PM »
Okay,  I am quite happy to have gotten our food budget down to $540/mo last month...  It still sounds quite high.. but..

Qualifiers

    For 4, essentially all adults, two are heavy eaters and third is extremely large eater - active teenage boy, who is hard to cook enough food for, and goes to pre-packaged anything as first choice instead of leftovers.   So, let's just say 2x the people as OP.

      We have been eating through the freezer / canning jars for fruit and vegetables (beets, carrots, squash, roasted peppers, canned fruits), and onions / potatoes, fresh apples and bananas, one head of lettuce. 

    DH and I ate out 4 meals this past month (went away for birthday).  (26 days of food, not 30)

   That's  Cdn (1.25x exchange) and 15% price markup across the border..

So...   $540 x half (number of mouths) / 1.25 (exchange rate) / 1.15 (geographic markup) x 30/26 (days of food) = US$216 for the month.

WOW!   Did i get to the magic number?!



Honestly, we have not eaten as much yogurt and fruits and vegetables as we normally would with our dinners, (It is very $$$$ last month)... There has been ramen for lunch some days for the teenagers, and egg-only dinners, waffles (without any fruit or veg).   We had ground beef only 2x (from freezer supply and waiting for sale to get it at $3/lb)...  It's been a lot of roast chicken or pork with a side of home-canned applesauce and few pieces of beets, maybe with potatoes or rice.  Pasta with tomato sauce and dried beans...   I also did not buy many drink cans for DS to take to school, or luncheon meats so he has been pushing for more than just lunches with water, banana and pb sandwiches.   We maintained our cold cereal habit, though.   

I don't think this is sustainable, for us, but in the mid summer, the fruits and veg come down in price so I could repeat for about 3 months around then... of course, family starts to want hotdogs and hamburgers in the summer, which I do find to be a pricier meal.

$540 Canadian for four adult heavy eaters is not bad at all. Good work!

the_fixer

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #256 on: February 26, 2018, 07:15:36 PM »
Love this thread and even better since you are in Colorado as it really drives home how bad my wife and I are at spending on food. I am too embarrassed to say what we spent in a month :(

Looks like we have similar cooking styles, simple prep, limit the amount of dirty dishes and ingredients that can be reused for multiple dishes throughout the week.

Tonight's dinner
Chicken fajitas
Brown rice cooked over the weekend

Leftovers going into burritos for lunch.

Looking forward to following your thread, I really need to watch for sales especially for meat and consider buying bulk rice / beans.

Couple of tips that I can share to pay you back for the kick in the butt to look at our food spending.

King Soopers in the meat department has herbs, butter and seasonings they will give you if you are purchasing meat. I get the Fajita seasoning they gave me a big plastic bag and also go for the fresh sage and rosemary.

Give baked potatoes a try as a base for your meal, for example we make Mexican potatoes and similar items once a week. You can bake the potatoes days in advance then throw some taco seasoned ground beef, salsa and whatever other thing you would put on a taco.

Works with all kinds of things like chunks of chicken, some broccoli and cheddar cheese.

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APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #257 on: February 26, 2018, 08:13:15 PM »
Tonight was Potato Night. The kids wanted fries, but I didn't think I had quite enough in my potato bag to make a whole pan of fries, so I made "smashed" potatoes instead. Topped them with beef and onions/garlic, and asparagus on the side. The ground beef/onion mix, I just seasoned with salt/garlic/paprika. The kids had BBQ sauce on their potatoes (whatever floats their boat, lol. I won't complain-- BBQ sauce is cheap).

[Pictured are Kiddo's and my plates]


Ground beef: $1.50
Onion: $.40
Garlic: $.10
Potatoes: ~$.60
Asparagus: ~$1.00
Sour cream: ~$.10

Total cost for dinner = $3.70 plus a bit of BBQ sauce.

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #258 on: February 27, 2018, 06:57:46 AM »
Love this thread and even better since you are in Colorado as it really drives home how bad my wife and I are at spending on food. I am too embarrassed to say what we spent in a month :(

Looks like we have similar cooking styles, simple prep, limit the amount of dirty dishes and ingredients that can be reused for multiple dishes throughout the week.

Tonight's dinner
Chicken fajitas
Brown rice cooked over the weekend

Leftovers going into burritos for lunch.

Looking forward to following your thread, I really need to watch for sales especially for meat and consider buying bulk rice / beans.

Couple of tips that I can share to pay you back for the kick in the butt to look at our food spending.

King Soopers in the meat department has herbs, butter and seasonings they will give you if you are purchasing meat. I get the Fajita seasoning they gave me a big plastic bag and also go for the fresh sage and rosemary.

Give baked potatoes a try as a base for your meal, for example we make Mexican potatoes and similar items once a week. You can bake the potatoes days in advance then throw some taco seasoned ground beef, salsa and whatever other thing you would put on a taco.

Works with all kinds of things like chunks of chicken, some broccoli and cheddar cheese.

[Pretty pictures]

I like the "taco toppings on baked potatoes" idea. I'll have to do that one of these potato nights.
I don't often end up getting meat at King Soopers, but I wouldn't have thought to ask the meat dept. for fajita seasoning. I'll keep that in mind-- sometimes they have chicken on a good sale.

Thanks for the tips!

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #259 on: February 27, 2018, 07:07:02 AM »
A brief moment of terror....I bought a pork shoulder roast the other day. Yesterday, I salted and seasoned it to marinate overnight. This morning, I went to put it in my instant pot to slow cook it for dinner.....I almost couldn't fit it in the pot!



^This is AFTER I literally wedged it into the pot. Maybe next time I won't buy the largest roast, lol! On the other hand-- we're going to have amazing pulled pork tacos tonight, so...

galliver

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #260 on: February 27, 2018, 09:46:04 AM »
A brief moment of terror....I bought a pork shoulder roast the other day. Yesterday, I salted and seasoned it to marinate overnight. This morning, I went to put it in my instant pot to slow cook it for dinner.....I almost couldn't fit it in the pot!



^This is AFTER I literally wedged it into the pot. Maybe next time I won't buy the largest roast, lol! On the other hand-- we're going to have amazing pulled pork tacos tonight, so...
Can you post your cooking method?

I did meat in IP like once and it came out dry and tough. May have just been too lean, but still working up my courage to try meat again...also bf WFH and does amazing pork shoulder in the oven, so we have had alternatives ;) But this seems like less cleanup, and maybe less time?

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #261 on: February 27, 2018, 11:26:06 AM »
A brief moment of terror....I bought a pork shoulder roast the other day. Yesterday, I salted and seasoned it to marinate overnight. This morning, I went to put it in my instant pot to slow cook it for dinner.....I almost couldn't fit it in the pot!



^This is AFTER I literally wedged it into the pot. Maybe next time I won't buy the largest roast, lol! On the other hand-- we're going to have amazing pulled pork tacos tonight, so...
Can you post your cooking method?

I did meat in IP like once and it came out dry and tough. May have just been too lean, but still working up my courage to try meat again...also bf WFH and does amazing pork shoulder in the oven, so we have had alternatives ;) But this seems like less cleanup, and maybe less time?

Here's how I do it, I'm no expert, but the rules I generally try to follow for slow-cooking meats:
1) Always marinate. Always. Longer is better.

2) Cook it at the temperature you want it to be when it's done, for as long as it takes to be tender.

I find a dry marinade to be less hassle than a brine, so the night before, I generously salt+season it on all sides. Then I want to cook low and slow for as long as possible in a pot/pan where it can't dry out (i.e., something with a lid, and not uncovered). So I usually start it as early in the morning as I can.

In my instant pot, I start it on high pressure for 30-45 minutes. This brings everything up to food-safe temps (165F is what I'm comfortable with). Then I use the slow-cook function on low or medium for the rest of the time.

I'm not certain that my way is the best way, but it seems to work okay so far. If you have a good process in your oven, I'm not sure it'd be any less work with the instant pot.

galliver

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #262 on: February 27, 2018, 02:16:03 PM »
A brief moment of terror....I bought a pork shoulder roast the other day. Yesterday, I salted and seasoned it to marinate overnight. This morning, I went to put it in my instant pot to slow cook it for dinner.....I almost couldn't fit it in the pot!



^This is AFTER I literally wedged it into the pot. Maybe next time I won't buy the largest roast, lol! On the other hand-- we're going to have amazing pulled pork tacos tonight, so...
Can you post your cooking method?

I did meat in IP like once and it came out dry and tough. May have just been too lean, but still working up my courage to try meat again...also bf WFH and does amazing pork shoulder in the oven, so we have had alternatives ;) But this seems like less cleanup, and maybe less time?

Here's how I do it, I'm no expert, but the rules I generally try to follow for slow-cooking meats:
1) Always marinate. Always. Longer is better.

2) Cook it at the temperature you want it to be when it's done, for as long as it takes to be tender.

I find a dry marinade to be less hassle than a brine, so the night before, I generously salt+season it on all sides. Then I want to cook low and slow for as long as possible in a pot/pan where it can't dry out (i.e., something with a lid, and not uncovered). So I usually start it as early in the morning as I can.

In my instant pot, I start it on high pressure for 30-45 minutes. This brings everything up to food-safe temps (165F is what I'm comfortable with). Then I use the slow-cook function on low or medium for the rest of the time.

I'm not certain that my way is the best way, but it seems to work okay so far. If you have a good process in your oven, I'm not sure it'd be any less work with the instant pot.

Cool thanks! I think IP might be great for summer (which in SoCal can happen anytime, apparently...we had 80F days in January this year...); and since we have it anyway and I love it for hearty grains and soup, I might as well know what my options are with it :)

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #263 on: February 27, 2018, 10:05:42 PM »
A brief moment of terror....I bought a pork shoulder roast the other day. Yesterday, I salted and seasoned it to marinate overnight. This morning, I went to put it in my instant pot to slow cook it for dinner.....I almost couldn't fit it in the pot!



^This is AFTER I literally wedged it into the pot. Maybe next time I won't buy the largest roast, lol! On the other hand-- we're going to have amazing pulled pork tacos tonight, so...
Can you post your cooking method?

I did meat in IP like once and it came out dry and tough. May have just been too lean, but still working up my courage to try meat again...also bf WFH and does amazing pork shoulder in the oven, so we have had alternatives ;) But this seems like less cleanup, and maybe less time?

Here's how I do it, I'm no expert, but the rules I generally try to follow for slow-cooking meats:
1) Always marinate. Always. Longer is better.

2) Cook it at the temperature you want it to be when it's done, for as long as it takes to be tender.

I find a dry marinade to be less hassle than a brine, so the night before, I generously salt+season it on all sides. Then I want to cook low and slow for as long as possible in a pot/pan where it can't dry out (i.e., something with a lid, and not uncovered). So I usually start it as early in the morning as I can.

In my instant pot, I start it on high pressure for 30-45 minutes. This brings everything up to food-safe temps (165F is what I'm comfortable with). Then I use the slow-cook function on low or medium for the rest of the time.

I'm not certain that my way is the best way, but it seems to work okay so far. If you have a good process in your oven, I'm not sure it'd be any less work with the instant pot.

Cool thanks! I think IP might be great for summer (which in SoCal can happen anytime, apparently...we had 80F days in January this year...); and since we have it anyway and I love it for hearty grains and soup, I might as well know what my options are with it :)

Update on the pork roast-- I should have started it cooking last night instead of this morning, lol! It was cooking along fine, it just wasn't going to be done quite in time for dinner; so I set it for 30 min at high-pressure to finish it off. I probably could have cooked it on medium all day and it would have been fine.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #264 on: February 28, 2018, 12:39:10 AM »
Okay,  I am quite happy to have gotten our food budget down to $540/mo last month...  It still sounds quite high.. but..

Qualifiers

    For 4, essentially all adults, two are heavy eaters and third is extremely large eater - active teenage boy, who is hard to cook enough food for, and goes to pre-packaged anything as first choice instead of leftovers.   So, let's just say 2x the people as OP.

      We have been eating through the freezer / canning jars for fruit and vegetables (beets, carrots, squash, roasted peppers, canned fruits), and onions / potatoes, fresh apples and bananas, one head of lettuce. 

    DH and I ate out 4 meals this past month (went away for birthday).  (26 days of food, not 30)

   That's  Cdn (1.25x exchange) and 15% price markup across the border..

So...   $540 x half (number of mouths) / 1.25 (exchange rate) / 1.15 (geographic markup) x 30/26 (days of food) = US$216 for the month.

WOW!   Did i get to the magic number?!



Honestly, we have not eaten as much yogurt and fruits and vegetables as we normally would with our dinners, (It is very $$$$ last month)... There has been ramen for lunch some days for the teenagers, and egg-only dinners, waffles (without any fruit or veg).   We had ground beef only 2x (from freezer supply and waiting for sale to get it at $3/lb)...  It's been a lot of roast chicken or pork with a side of home-canned applesauce and few pieces of beets, maybe with potatoes or rice.  Pasta with tomato sauce and dried beans...   I also did not buy many drink cans for DS to take to school, or luncheon meats so he has been pushing for more than just lunches with water, banana and pb sandwiches.   We maintained our cold cereal habit, though.   

I don't think this is sustainable, for us, but in the mid summer, the fruits and veg come down in price so I could repeat for about 3 months around then... of course, family starts to want hotdogs and hamburgers in the summer, which I do find to be a pricier meal.

I often ponder about my food spending costs vs American costs. Do you really think the difference is that extreme? My husband and I are both large eaters, he is an extremely big eater (physical job, bikes 36 km round trip to work). Our food budget is between $430-500ish per month. I eat a lot of fresh fruit (even in winter), fresh veggies, sometimes organic, lots of beans/tofu and no meat.

Goldielocks

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #265 on: February 28, 2018, 01:14:46 AM »
Well, it depends.   Some sale items are much closer in value, sometimes.   (i found apples for 50 cents a lb one week here, for instance), but I went 7 weeks before getting any produce close to OP's costs... which is why so little was bought.

Milk -- $5 per gallon
Eggs - $2.99 per dozen (large eggs)
Cheese -- $5 per lb of cheap stuff on sale (block cheddar) or $9 per lb for something like Havarti.
Avocado - Usually $1.50 each
Onions $0.50 per lb (bulk)
Potatoes $0.50 to $0.70 per lb, for 10 to 20 lb bags (variety)
Bread:  $1.80 (no name 1lb sliced loaf) per loaf to $2.50 per loaf  (Wonderbread).
Apples on sale $1 per lb
Green leaf lettuce (head) is $1.59 each, a bundle of celery is $2.
Ground beef (lean) $3 per lb.  Cheaper cut of blade steak or chuck roast is $6 per lb, Chicken breasts are $6/lb, etc.
Chicken (whole), Pork Loin roast in bulk bag, extreme special at $2 per lb.
Bacon $5.99 per lb


Most of our foods compete on the same markets, so exchange rate is a given. (Beef, produce, etc)..  Then you add in the geographic costs due to reduced volume or transportation costs..

Note, Ontario is about 7% cheaper than BC prices, sometimes 10% on average.  There is more competition in Ontario.  Sask, MB and Eastern Canada are more than Ontario and BC, both.

Malaysia41

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #266 on: February 28, 2018, 02:42:11 AM »
We don't do great on the monthly food bill. Close to $1000 a month for three of us. I'm looking to you all for wisdom, but I have to admit, I'm having a really hard time getting past all the pictures and discussion of cheap meat.

Can I ask something of you? Please- if you're buying cheap meat - beef and pork and chicken- please look into the state of the industrial factory farming practices. And if you're buying grocery store meat in the US - it's almost guaranteed to be factory farmed (link is to a USDA report on the transformation of livestock over many decades).

Factory farmed meat is terrible for the environment, and, if you're the sort of person who cares, factory farming is horrific for the animals.  I'm personally not a big animal lover, but after learning about these standard practices, I've decided I'm unwilling to take part in the assembly line of well, torture. Please, look into the practices that are required for producing milk, how they handle the 'waste' products that are male calves, and ask if you want to be a part of it.  I could use all kinds of incendiary language here, but it's probably better you discover for yourself. PM me or reply if you want recommendations on resources regarding the ethics of industrial animal factory farming .

Lastly- regarding the environment, I'd ask you to contemplate this: terrestrial vertebrate biomass was approximately 300M tons 12,000 years ago. It was all wild animals and some humans (you could argue we were wild at that point of course). Many ecologists argue that 300M tons is the natural carrying capacity of earth for terrestrial vertebrates.

Today, terrestrial vertebrate biomass is 6x that. It's 1,800 million tons. 400M is human biomass. Century after century, wild animals have been absolutely decimated, as only 20M tons is wild animals today. A staggering 1400 million tons of terrestrial vertebrate biomass is livestock.  Check out Nate Hagens, Vaclav Smil or Paul Chefurka for these numbers.



Dr. Nate Hagen's 'Blindspots and Superheroes' talk is an eye opener.

To conclude with this portion of the sermon: Please consider swapping out beef and pork for lentils and roman beans.  You get a ton of protein in beans, and it's way more environmentally sustainable.  There are so many plant based recipes and products out there, it's not too hard - and it can be even cheaper.  Although, clearly I'm no paragon of perfection on the $ side of it.  Too many blueberries and store made hummus, me thinks.

I'd be happy to share these and other resources with you, but I imagine if you do a google search or youtube search, you'll come across Earthling Ed, Erin Janus (prepare for snark), or the documentaries Forks Over Knives, or the Joaquin Phoenix narrated Earthlings.

Back to grocery store stuff:  Ugh - just in February we spent $1022 in grocery stores for THREE OF US! I can subtract only about $20-30 for household stuff like TP, laundry soap and 3 super-discounted glass bowls. So let's call it $1000.

I guess we could cut down on blueberries, and frozen cheeseless pizzas. We could make our homemade hummus more and buy the store-bought less. What I really need to do is find a place to buy the 50lb bags of oats that some of you mentioned in posts on this thread. I make our own oat milk (see reasons spelled out above), but that really rips through the stash of oats.  Oats are about $1.50 a lb here. @APowers says they buy oats for half that. I need in on that action. We also rip through the soy yogurt. $1.40 for a small tub of it.  Oh - but it's just like sour cream and so good over cuban black bean soup.

It's time to roll up my sleeves. Too many freaking excuses over here. You guys are an inspiration, and I need to work on this grocery bill. (note: pre-MMM our grocery bill was probably double this - so we are capable of improving - we just have further to go).  That's it, I'm meeting with my friend who was born here.  I'm going to hit him up for every store he knows of that sells bulk stuff.  We can bake our own high-fiber bread instead of buying it for - yikes - $1.80 a loaf.

Sorry if you didn't want to be punched in the face regarding animal factory farming - but there's just too much cheap grocery store meat going on in this thread and I couldn't not say anything.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2018, 02:53:20 AM by Malaysia41 »

Goldielocks

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #267 on: February 28, 2018, 12:10:37 PM »
Hi Malaysia41.   I don't think this is the thread to bring up food choices, environment, health claims, etc.

I feel compelled to comment that different regions and countries have different practices.   I came to terms with my meat and food choices after personally visiting the farms, ranches, fish farms, greenhouses and processing facilities to decide for myself.  .  Dairies in particular here are quite bucolic operations. (is that a pun? to use an adjective that is its own definition? IDK)

Pulses (chickpeas / lentils / beans) and greenhouses have environmental impacts, too, that raise concerns with some groups.  These are regional concerns.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #268 on: February 28, 2018, 02:19:21 PM »
Hi Malaysia41.   I don't think this is the thread to bring up food choices, environment, health claims, etc.

I feel compelled to comment that different regions and countries have different practices.   I came to terms with my meat and food choices after personally visiting the farms, ranches, fish farms, greenhouses and processing facilities to decide for myself.  .  Dairies in particular here are quite bucolic operations. (is that a pun? to use an adjective that is its own definition? IDK)

Pulses (chickpeas / lentils / beans) and greenhouses have environmental impacts, too, that raise concerns with some groups.  These are regional concerns.
Hey Goldilocks,

If everyone bought their animal products directly from nearby farms like you do - I wouldn't have brought this topic up. You sound like you're showing the way.

Re differences in regions - of course there are.  It's especially pervasive in the US, but large scale animal ag is growing around the world. So it applies elsewhere too.  Thus my plea: learn how your animal food products are raised, slaughtered, processed and delivered before they get in your hands.

To your point about various impacts: sure all agriculture has impacts, I'm not making claims that veggie farming is perfect. To criticize one thing is not to say all other things are perfect. But veggie, grain, pulse farming so far as I understand them, are better vs factory farmed cows or pigs.  Sure, buying out of season fruit from around the world that was flown in last night is a terrible idea, as is apparently eating veggies from a hot house. You could come up with lots of sub-optimal examples.

As you say, this is maybe isn't the right thread, but I was trying really hard to go through the conversation and it was just - too much to bear.

I was trying to stick to just discussing meat, but since you brought up dairy:  it's a tough case to say it's ethical. Even if cows can roam in fields during the day (in bucolic fields), their lives are far from pleasant. To produce milk, they must have babies over and over. That means they're artificially inseminated (it's a gnarly practice), and then if they have a male cow, their baby is either slaughtered immediately, or sent to be raised for veal - one of the most horrific fates an animal can have. And dairy cows are milked their whole lives until their milk is spent - then they're sent to slaughter. If I was reincarnated, I think 'dairy cow' would fall on the very bottom.

Anyway - shouldn't get into a dissertation since you asked me not to bring up food choices, environment or health claims.

All I'm asking is for people who buy cheap meat - esp in US grocery stores - to please learn all they can about the food chain delivering that meat. This is the MMM forum. We're a tough bunch of truth seekers.  We do our homework and make tough decisions based on our own values.  I'm just asking for you to apply that tough-mindedness to US grocery store meat - if you haven't looked into the reality of industrial animal factory farming (esp in the US), or haven't looked enough, please do. Because the cheap meat you're buying might not align with some of your values.

I'll stick to discussing my grocery receipts in future posts.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2018, 02:48:29 PM by Malaysia41 »

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #269 on: February 28, 2018, 08:04:54 PM »
Hi Malaysia41...   wrong thread to discuss this, I think. 

I will say that I was talking about my visits to the dreaded "factory farms" and mega processors.   Not "local / natural" farms.  I buy my items from the supermarket, for a low price, and the "Made in Canada" stuff -  I have a very good idea how it was raised, because I have seen a lot of it myself.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #270 on: February 28, 2018, 08:45:19 PM »
Hi Malaysia41.   I don't think this is the thread to bring up food choices, environment, health claims, etc.

I feel compelled to comment that different regions and countries have different practices.   I came to terms with my meat and food choices after personally visiting the farms, ranches, fish farms, greenhouses and processing facilities to decide for myself.  .  Dairies in particular here are quite bucolic operations. (is that a pun? to use an adjective that is its own definition? IDK)

Pulses (chickpeas / lentils / beans) and greenhouses have environmental impacts, too, that raise concerns with some groups.  These are regional concerns.
Hey Goldilocks,

[edited for clarity]

As you say, this is maybe isn't the right thread, but I was trying really hard to go through the conversation and it was just - too much to bear.

[edited for clarity]

All I'm asking is for people who buy cheap meat - esp in US grocery stores - to please learn all they can about the food chain delivering that meat. This is the MMM forum. We're a tough bunch of truth seekers.  We do our homework and make tough decisions based on our own values.  I'm just asking for you to apply that tough-mindedness to US grocery store meat - if you haven't looked into the reality of industrial animal factory farming (esp in the US), or haven't looked enough, please do. Because the cheap meat you're buying might not align with some of your values.

I'll stick to discussing my grocery receipts in future posts.

OP here. I think this thread is a fine place to bring up these topics. I appreciate that Malaysia took the time to thoughtfully put together some relevant commentary on my menu and grocery shopping. I appreciate that Goldielocks chimed in with her observations and experience.

All I ask is that this thread not become hijacked by a debate that's not in the vein of "Have a <$200/mo Food Budget".

If your grocery budget is higher than mine because you've thoughtfully decided to have a menu that is based on different factors than mine, that's okay. Maybe I can still be an inspiration to improve your cost factor. You may even influence me to shift my menu. I'm not going to argue about it here; I'll just keep cooking and noting what I'm buying (whether that's changed or not).

Thanks for being civil!

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #271 on: February 28, 2018, 09:05:27 PM »
Tuesday's dinner: pork roast...pulled pork tacos



Pork shoulder: $12.58
Corn tortillas: $1.00
Red pepper: $.50
Green Pepper: $.50
Onion: $.40
Tomato: $.20
Sour cream: $.15
Lettuce: $.35

Total dinner = $15.68 plus a bit of salsa. After dinner, I ended up with ~5lb of cooked meat, plus a lot of broth and probably 1.5 cups of lard, which will go in my grease jar in the fridge. Also, I figured out the other day that I can toast corn tortillas in the toaster. SO MUCH EASIER than frying them one by one in the skillet. Just put them in, wait two minutes and bam. Ready. Pop two more in while the first two are being made up and eaten...bam. Two more ready. Almost as fast as we could fix them and eat them.

ETA: Also had strawberries for dessert: $.50
---------------------------------------------------------------------

Tonight's dinner: leftovers.

It was a pretty crazy day, so dinner was not according to plan. SO and Girlie had some pasta for their carbs, Kiddo had pork tacos, I had a pork sandwich.

Pasta: ~$.25
Lettuce: ~.10
Bread/tortillas: $.20

Total cost = $.55. ETA Strawberries for dessert: $.48
« Last Edit: March 01, 2018, 10:49:58 PM by APowers »

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #272 on: March 01, 2018, 09:24:16 AM »
This thread is very inspirational. I too am embarrassed to say what I spent last year on food. Hubby and I had high income (& high stress) jobs. Doing the MMM math, I realized we actually were already FI if we changed our spendy ways. We are taking the leap. I worked my notice and he has about a month to go. I can be a very resourceful cook but we were eating out almost every meal! The trick will be to see if I can do this (or how close I can come) while eating the way we feel is the most healthy for us. I eat a high fat/high protein diet with plenty of veggies and almost no fruit. Hubby can get away with more carbs so I supplement his portions with a roll, rice or tortillas, etc. I am inspired to keep track of meals and cost. I know a few of the keys for me is NO WASTE, limiting portion sizes and eating out. This morning I had an egg with a handful of spinach and onions/peppers thrown in. I had bacon but I bought the "ends and pieces" which are much less expensive. Hubby had a bacon and egg breakfast sandwich (on a bun).

Thanks for the inspiration.I know what I paid for the food I currently have. I will track my "eating out" separately but know full well that it is ALL food and I have to limit eating out. One of the issues is that we travel quite a bit visiting family and taking care of rental property. I am trying to keep ready to heat meals for hubby so he is not tempted to eat out. Today I made five sausage breakfast sandwiches for the freezer. I also have three single serve meals ready (Chicken & Rice, Pork & Veggie Stir Fry, and an awesome "Chicken Guisada" recipe I made up to use some leftovers).

2 eggs: .25
bacon: 1.36
bun: .12
spinach .15
onion .10
peppers .10

Total Meal (2 adults) $2.08

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #273 on: March 01, 2018, 10:56:41 PM »
Dinner tonight was beans and leftovers, pretty much.

Beans: $.53
Pork: $0 (leftover)
Asparagus: $1.00
Strawberries: $.98
Tortillas: $.80
Sour cream: $.10

Total dinner cost: $3.41. I packaged up the remaining pork meat for the freezer. I got three .75lb portions put away-- that makes six meals from that pork roast, plus broth, plus grease for the frying pan.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #274 on: March 01, 2018, 11:00:09 PM »
As it's the end of the month today.....Here is the moment of truth.

All my food spending, tallied up nicely for you. I made 17 separate grocery trips. Several of those were combined with other non-grocery errands I was already doing anyway, which puts me at maybe 12-13 dedicated grocery trips....that's about 3 grocery trips per week. I knew I felt like I did a lot of grocery shopping this month. I combined a lot of errands into multiple stores per trip, but still. Feels way excessive to me.

$20.72 --- Safeway [2 visits]
$52.12 --- King Soopers [4 visits]
$71.66 --- Sprouts [5 visits]
$7.74 --- Discount Store [3 visit]
$40.79 --- Costco [1 visit]
$8.25 --- Wal-Mart [2 visits]

$9.18 --- Costco Food Court [1 visit]
______

$210.46 --- Total Food Spending for February.

I feel like my freezer is full of meat, and the pantry is full of peanut butter and tuna, so I don't feel like I overspent too badly-- though I did spend more than last month, lol!

$124.70 = January
$210.46 = February ($201.28 if you don't count eating out)
« Last Edit: March 02, 2018, 05:37:37 AM by APowers »

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #275 on: March 01, 2018, 11:19:57 PM »
Also stopped to pick up bread at the discount store today.



Total receipt = $1.98.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #276 on: March 02, 2018, 02:07:11 AM »
$186.73 - Total food for February 2018.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #277 on: March 02, 2018, 06:50:33 AM »
APowers,
I just had to comment.  I have found your postings to be SO eye opening but I couldn't really figure out why.  You guys eat very differently than my family and I'm not really trying to achieve such a low food spend, so I was asking myself why your posts so impactful?  I'm so impressed that you would open up your families' food habits with so much diligence and transparency for all to see.  Amazing! 

Why else were your posts so thought provoking for me?  My family eats very few starches, they would consider a 2 oz portion of meat to be an appetizer and if I put raw carrot sticks on a dinner plate there would be mutiny.  And, that, I realized is exactly why your posts are so inspiring.  We have set all these crazy expectations for meals that are so unnecessary.  Your focus seems to be on healthy, cheap, limited quantity and the focus is not on the food but on the nourishment & related family time.   It also seems like you guys don't do a lot of between meal snacking.

So, I'll continue to follow your posts with a ton of interest.  In my family, I'll be adding back a bit of limited/high nutrition starches, taking the focus off the meat item and really focusing on per meal costs and trying to get the family to snack less.  I'm sure I'll adopt more useful ideas as you continue to inspire.  Thank you!

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #278 on: March 02, 2018, 07:21:34 AM »
APowers,
I just had to comment.  I have found your postings to be SO eye opening but I couldn't really figure out why.  You guys eat very differently than my family and I'm not really trying to achieve such a low food spend, so I was asking myself why your posts so impactful?  I'm so impressed that you would open up your families' food habits with so much diligence and transparency for all to see.  Amazing! 

Why else were your posts so thought provoking for me?  My family eats very few starches, they would consider a 2 oz portion of meat to be an appetizer and if I put raw carrot sticks on a dinner plate there would be mutiny.  And, that, I realized is exactly why your posts are so inspiring.  We have set all these crazy expectations for meals that are so unnecessary.  Your focus seems to be on healthy, cheap, limited quantity and the focus is not on the food but on the nourishment & related family time.   It also seems like you guys don't do a lot of between meal snacking.

So, I'll continue to follow your posts with a ton of interest.  In my family, I'll be adding back a bit of limited/high nutrition starches, taking the focus off the meat item and really focusing on per meal costs and trying to get the family to snack less.  I'm sure I'll adopt more useful ideas as you continue to inspire.  Thank you!
+1 for this.  Thank you APowers! I served a fruit/veggie tray at dinner where I never would have tried that before. There was some mutiny, but I'm trying.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #279 on: March 02, 2018, 08:17:32 AM »
APowers,
I just had to comment.  I have found your postings to be SO eye opening but I couldn't really figure out why.  You guys eat very differently than my family and I'm not really trying to achieve such a low food spend, so I was asking myself why your posts so impactful?  I'm so impressed that you would open up your families' food habits with so much diligence and transparency for all to see.  Amazing! 

Why else were your posts so thought provoking for me?  My family eats very few starches, they would consider a 2 oz portion of meat to be an appetizer and if I put raw carrot sticks on a dinner plate there would be mutiny.  And, that, I realized is exactly why your posts are so inspiring.  We have set all these crazy expectations for meals that are so unnecessary.  Your focus seems to be on healthy, cheap, limited quantity and the focus is not on the food but on the nourishment & related family time.   It also seems like you guys don't do a lot of between meal snacking.

So, I'll continue to follow your posts with a ton of interest.  In my family, I'll be adding back a bit of limited/high nutrition starches, taking the focus off the meat item and really focusing on per meal costs and trying to get the family to snack less.  I'm sure I'll adopt more useful ideas as you continue to inspire.  Thank you!
+1 for this.  Thank you APowers! I served a fruit/veggie tray at dinner where I never would have tried that before. There was some mutiny, but I'm trying.

Wow, thank you! I'm glad I can be inspiring.

I do try to ensure a good balance between cheap and healthy-- it does sometimes feel like it would be easier if I would just spend more, but I also feel like I'd end up sacrificing some "healthy" to gain that convenience.

You're right that we don't do between-meal snacks. It helps the kids be actually hungry at mealtimes, so they eat more regular meal and I get less "But Dad, I'm not hungryyyyy....". In my experience, individually packaged snacks will blow a giant hole in your budget-- especially if you're trying to keep it as low as mine. Sometimes, I'll do raw veggies like carrots or celery sticks as a snack, if I know dinner is going to be late, or if we've been out doing something when it would normally be mealtime.

One tip about meat portioning-- meat goes a lot further as a mix-in than it does as an entree. Take a rice dish, for example: if you serve it as rice/veggie/meat, your meat lovers will want their meat serving to be closer to 8-12oz to make it feel like "enough"; BUT, if you serve the same amount of rice+veggies as a stir-fry and use the same amount of meat/person, it will feel inordinately meat-heavy. If you can move towards dishes that don't use meat as an entree, it might make shifting your meat/carb/veggie ratios a bit easier.

Also, I don't focus on per-meal costs as much as I focus on only buying at good prices-- stocking up when beef is $2/lb, or when pork/chicken is $1/lb. If you know you eat a lot of meat, being able to stock up when it's 1/2 or 3/4 the price you normally pay will make a huge difference in your budget, even if you don't change your eating habits at all.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #280 on: March 02, 2018, 05:19:58 PM »
Good point about the meat mix in's or stir fries.   Along those lines, I have been successful at cutting up chicken breasts into thirds or quarters for self serve.  Even when it is just sauce with chicken (starch and veggie on side), they still serve up less meat... e.g. two portions instead of a full chicken breast each.

I will say some of the meat / rice / veg dishes in your photos would have some in my family still looking around for the meat dish, or even eating this "Appetizer" then going out for take-out burgers because I did not cook anything for dinner. (Rare, but it has happened so I have to plan the meal a bit better, "meat forward").   I definitely need to work on that with them.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #281 on: March 02, 2018, 08:40:43 PM »
Lentils for dinner tonight.

12oz Lentils: $.75
Pork: $0 (leftover)
16oz Carrots: $.50
4stalks Celery: ~$.20
1 medium Onion: $0 (leftover)
1oz Garlic: $.10
Sour cream: ~$.10
~14 Corn tortillas: $.45

Total dinner cost: $2.60 plus a bit of parmesan. Nothing fancy, but delicious and easy. Would have been SUPER yummy with cheese, but I'm down to my last 8oz bag of cheddar, so I decided against using it up on this.
« Last Edit: March 02, 2018, 08:42:18 PM by APowers »

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #282 on: March 03, 2018, 03:46:15 PM »
Just picked up 30 Dannon yogurts 5.3 oz for $10 on a store special, only .33 each .99 per pound.  The deal was buy $15 get $5 off and they are on sale for .50.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #283 on: March 03, 2018, 10:20:51 PM »
Just picked up 30 Dannon yogurts 5.3 oz for $10 on a store special, only .33 each .99 per pound.  The deal was buy $15 get $5 off and they are on sale for .50.

Good job stacking deals!

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #284 on: March 03, 2018, 10:29:00 PM »
Sorry, no pictures today-- I spent 12 hours prepping for/hanging drywall and installing tilebacker in the basement. Needless to say, I'm exhausted.

So dinner was leftovers/random stuff. The kids had leftover potatoes with taco meat/onions, SO had a portion of pasta with some leftover sauce. I had some leftover beans+lentils in burritos. I wasn't paying strict attention to what was being used/made, but I wouldn't guess over $1.50 in non-leftover ingredients.

Also, SO made another batch of hummus today, so that was $2.50.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #285 on: March 04, 2018, 10:05:06 AM »
I thought I did great on last months food budget
Then I realized it's because Feb only has 28 days

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #286 on: March 05, 2018, 10:15:20 PM »
Sunday's dinner. Normally, Sunday is leftovers day, but we ate pretty much all the leftovers on Saturday. I made bean soup with some bread to go with it

Beans, carrots, onion, celery, garlic, and some rolls to go with it.

Soup: ~$1.75
Bread: $.65

I also made some cookies, which means I'm out of eggs.

~16 small cookies: ~$.85-.95



--------------------------------------

Tonight: chicken and rice

Today was pretty crazy around dinner time. Two trips to Lowe's plus a Costco errand after the kids get out of school is definitely way too many.

Rotisserie chicken: $5.40
Rice: ~.30
Green pepper: $.50
Cucumber: $1.00

Total cost of dinner: $7.20. I was out of garlic powder and rice and just about out of mayo....and the rotisserie chicken made dinner into a 15 minute prep instead of a 45-60 minute prep. I am definitely not going to try to do this again. Trying to pick out paint colours for the basement while the kids are tired and crabby is no fun.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 02:32:11 PM by APowers »

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #287 on: March 06, 2018, 06:46:16 AM »
Here's what we got at Costco yesterday:



Rice: $8.79
Coconut oil: $16.99
Mayonnaise: $4.59
Cold cuts (lunch meat): $11.89
Rotisserie chicken: $5.40
Garlic granules: $5.99

Total receipt = $53.65. I haven't seen rice come up on sale at Sprouts yet, and I am OUT. I usually go for brown rice, but I know Costco's brown rice is more expensive than I will find it at Sprouts when it does come on sale, so I really just need something to fill in until then; and $.35/lb is a price that I am okay with. The cold cuts will end up being used for dinners on sandwich nights, and the coconut oil is used for baking "special" cookies and things (i.e., as a butter substitute for Kiddo who is gluten/dairy-free).

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #288 on: March 06, 2018, 07:55:59 PM »
This week is potato week for us, we have 7 potatoes that needed to be used up so I thought I would share the Mexican potato I made tonight.

1 large baked potato cut in half
1/4 lb taco seasoned ground beef
Sharp cheddar
1 Avocado
1 tomato
Sourcream


We cooked the potatoes this weekend so I put them in the oven and broiled the cheeses on top then added the toppings.

With your shopping skills I imagine you could build this for next to nothing.


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APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #289 on: March 06, 2018, 09:08:02 PM »
This week is potato week for us, we have 7 potatoes that needed to be used up so I thought I would share the Mexican potato I made tonight.

1 large baked potato cut in half
1/4 lb taco seasoned ground beef
Sharp cheddar
1 Avocado
1 tomato
Sourcream


We cooked the potatoes this weekend so I put them in the oven and broiled the cheeses on top then added the toppings.

With your shopping skills I imagine you could build this for next to nothing.

Mmmm, cheesiness. I am currently out of potatoes, which is kind of a drag. I think cheese is the hardest thing to find for a really good price (I look for $2/lb).

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #290 on: March 06, 2018, 09:20:28 PM »
Dinner tonight was chicken and rice again. This time, I actually cooked the chicken that I had intended to cook yesterday. So now we have a giant container full of chicken meat. I think we'll do sandwiches tomorrow with it.

Leftover chicken on my sandwich for lunch today:


Dinner:


Chicken: $4.97
Rice: $.44
Carrots: ~$.50
Green pepper: $.50
Cheese: $.10
Bread: $.10

Total dinner cost = $6.41. The meals the last week or so include the fact that I'm also feeding the guy who's installing drywall for me, and the other guy who is helping with other remodeling stuff. So meals have been an extra person, if not two, lately. Which has basically meant not as much leftovers. On a side note, I am happy to feed the guy who does drywall for me, as I hate doing drywall. I would SO much rather cook than finish drywall.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 09:26:35 PM by APowers »

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #291 on: March 06, 2018, 09:24:45 PM »
I also stopped by the discount store and picked up some more bread, as I try to feed my remodeling helper dude lunch (pbj sandwich, at least) while he's here.



Total receipt = $1.98

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #292 on: March 07, 2018, 07:10:00 PM »
This is cool to follow. I also have a $200/month budget, but for a family of 2 (in NYC though, so prices are pretty high).

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #293 on: March 07, 2018, 08:51:20 PM »
Since we skipped sandwich night last saturday, and we have chicken leftovers today, I decided to do sandwiches tonight.

Mine:


Girlie was like "Take a picture of mine too!"


Bread: $.99
Chicken: $0 (leftover)
Pickles: $.60
Red pepper: $.50
Onion: $.40
Tomato: $.44


Total dinner cost = $2.83. I also fed a couple workers lunch and made dinner for the drywall guy, so we almost used a whole loaf of bread today (we certainly would have if I hadn't used corn tortillas for Kiddo's sandwich).

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #294 on: March 07, 2018, 09:01:50 PM »
Wednesday is ad day, and when I opened up the Sprouts ad, I saw that oatmeal was on sale! Hooray! I ALSO remembered that there was a $5-off coupon in last week's ad, AND they overlap their ads so that on wednesdays, both old and new ads are valid. W00t!




Green peppers: $2.00
Grapes ($.88/lb): $1.08
Tangelos ($.88/lb): $4.29
Romaine lettuce: $1.29
Oatmeal: $68.98

Coupon: -$5.00

Total receipt = $72.64. My first thought when I looked at the total at the register was "Welp. There goes this month's budget, lol!". But the oatmeal is a good price, and it doesn't really spoil, and everything else is a decent price and it's all healthy-- it'll all work out in the average. And I bet I still won't crack $200 this month. Or maybe just barely. Safeway sent me a coupon for frozen veggies at $.85/lb, which is a "stock up" price, so I'll probably end up with 10lbs or so in the freezer. But I laid up a good bit of meat last month, and 25lbs of rice, so there shouldn't be too much else to buy in bulk this month.

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #295 on: March 08, 2018, 07:28:24 PM »
I have bean soup leftovers from sunday, and Kiddo said to me "Dad, this is too much beans all the time." So....no beans on beans night, lol! I did pasta instead.



Pasta: ~$1.00
Sausage: $.85
Celery: $.20
Onion: $0 (leftover)
Green pepper: $.50
Garlic: $.10

Total dinner cost = $2.65 plus a bit of BBQ sauce and ketchup (Kiddo wanted ketchup. Whatever. He'll eat chocolate chip cookies with ketchup if I let him.). Everybody was pretty hungry tonight, plus I fed the drywall guy, so no leftover pasta. That's okay. I'll do lentils tomorrow, and there will be leftovers from that.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2018, 07:32:39 PM by APowers »

Padonak

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #296 on: March 08, 2018, 08:55:05 PM »
ptf

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #297 on: March 09, 2018, 08:47:59 PM »
Dinner tonight was lentil soup. The kids had no school today, so I was dragging them all over town to work with me...it was a crazy day. I was happy that I could throw everything in the instant pot and have it cooked in less than an hour.

Lentil soup: ~$1.90
Corn tortillas: $.37

Total dinner cost = $2.27. There are lots of leftovers, too.

APowers

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #298 on: March 09, 2018, 09:10:50 PM »
Also did some grocery errands while I was out and about.

Walmart Grocery:



Oregano: $5.48
Eggs: $3.92
Gluten-Free pasta: $3.96
Italian seasoning: $1.96
Tomato sauce: $1.00
Corn tortillas: $2.28

Total receipt = $18.60. I've been basically out of eggs for like three weeks, so when I saw them for $1/dozen, I bought four. Also, I used up the last of my gluten-free pasta the other night, so I needed some to at least tide me over until I can find it on sale. AND I had just run out of italian seasoning--and Costco didn't have any; I was hoping for a bulk-size, but all I could find was the oregano and the little jars. Not my ideal, but it'll work until I can figure out a reliable cheap source.

-------------------------------------------------

King Soopers:




Sour cream: $2.00
Cereal: $1.98
Pineapple: $1.98
Almond milk: $1.34
BBQ sauce: $2.07
Peanut butter: $4.95
Tortilla chips: $0 (free friday)
Potato chips: $4.50
Tide pods: $0 (free sample)

Total receipt = 18.82. Cereal I had a raincheck for from last time it was $.99/box and they were out. Pineapple was 99 each, and it is SO's favourite, so I try to pick it up whenever it goes on sale like this. Almond milk I had two e-coupons on my card for; just one of them would have made it $1.99, which is my "acceptable price" limit, so the additional 35 off was icing on the cake. I think mayyyyybe I have enough peanut butter in the pantry for now. Maybe. And potato chips were on clearance for $.90/each, so I asked Kiddo how many we should get, and he excitedly replied "Five!", so I got five. They'll be yummy at some point; for now, they're tucked away in the pantry. I wasn't expecting the cashier to offer me free Tide samples, but I was like "well, I won't say no to a few free loads of laundry..."

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Have a sub-$200/month Grocery Budget
« Reply #299 on: March 10, 2018, 04:08:11 AM »
Dude, the prices you're able to find just blow me away.  We never find anything that cheap around here.  Now, granted, most of our runaway grocery bill is due to the fact that we eat a lot of fancy pants stuff that you avoid.  But even if we ate like you do, I'm thinking our grocery bill would still be like 30-40% higher.

My hat's off to you!