Author Topic: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)  (Read 8727 times)

Lincolnshire Girl

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #100 on: May 09, 2019, 02:15:24 AM »
I regularly use frozen diced onion to cut down on prep time too. Frozen peas and sweetcorn are always on hand for an extra addition to any meal that feels a bit small. I will freeze left over kale, leeks, rhubarb etc if i'm not needing them straight away. And I love my frozen berry mix at breakfast.

I did read that frozen fruits/veggies tend to be fresher as they are frozen as soon as they are picked. How true that is in reality I really don't know.

sea_saw

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #101 on: May 09, 2019, 03:53:11 AM »
I could have sworn I did a freezer staples post somewhere but can't find it in my entire post history. Weird.

I really love using the freezer for components, as well as prepped meals.

I definitely cannot recommend frozen chopped spinach enough, I use that at least weekly. I've used frozen broccoli and similar veg before, it's handy to have a bag around to add a fresh element to 'cupboard' meals even if you get through 10 fresh broccolis in between having to break it out.

I personally love onion prep so I wouldn't buy those pre chopped. What I occasionally do is buy a large bag of onions, chop and fry them THEN freeze, so they're ready to go right into a dish also very space efficient compared to storing raw stuff (I get through a LOT of onion, which is why I am an onion chopping wizard).

Frozen minced garlic and ginger blocks that you can buy in asian shops are significantly better quality than the pasteurised stuff you get in jars (although I also have the jars cos I'm a lazy sod).

I like frozen berry mixes. Add yoghurt and honey and you have an instant dessert. Frozen grapes are an A+ hot weather snack.

For super mustachianism, a freezer bag full of carrot, onion, leek etc ends can turn into a stock. Parmesan rinds go in there too (google it, I'm not kidding!). Chicken carcasses if you do chicken.

I basically like to use the freezer as a time capsule. So many things in the reduced section freeze just fine and mean I can buy them for 15p and then have them when I want them. Veg going to go bad before you can use it, quick blanche, dry and freeze. Etc.

I Want to Believe

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #102 on: May 09, 2019, 07:37:43 AM »
According to money dashboard we spend on average 540 a month for 2 adults and a child. I'm sure we could cut it down, but we already try to get the cheapest food possible. We cook most of our own food, and try to avoid brand names.

Zola.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #103 on: May 13, 2019, 06:15:34 AM »
Time to change!!
I am making a real effort to lower grocery expenses. We have averaged 450 a month this year, just us two and a baby!  This is the result of failed planning and walking round grabbing stuff in the supermarket when I should really plan carefully and stick to it.

I am trying to stick to 60 a week to build up the current account a bit easier.. I have made a pen and paper list and stuck to it. I achieved it this week by batch cooking two main meals, hungover, on Sunday morning.  I made a Thai style red curry for a few dinners and a Mexican burrito bowl inspired batch cook for work lunches. This should take us up to Wednesday night, then we will use things from the freezer and rebuild the groceries again on Saturday morning. I think if I make my list towards the end of the week and plan I should be ok to stick to the budget.

Weekly Shop

Baby quick food top up 4.00
Nappies   3.00
Formula   11.00
Bread   1.00
   
Onions   0.80
Carrots   0.50
Broccoli   0.60
Chicken   12.00
Curry paste   2.00
Coconut milk   1.00
Garlic   0.40
   
Kidney beans   0.70
Lime   0.50
Peppers   2.00
Fajita mix   2.00
Salsa   1.50
Eggs   2.00
   
Salad   1.00
Sauce   1.00
Apples   1.60
Treats   2.00

Total   50.60
   
« Last Edit: May 13, 2019, 06:17:39 AM by Zola. »

PhilB

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #104 on: May 13, 2019, 10:03:18 AM »
Chicken   12.00
Yikes! How many chickens was that?

shelivesthedream

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #105 on: May 13, 2019, 10:50:14 AM »
I had a bit of a browse in Aldi's frozen section today. I can't eat onion or garlic so alas they're out! Apart from onion, chips and peas it was mainly "mixed themed veg", which I suppose I could buy and separate out but that's not something I have room for in my life right now.

However! They had loads of plain cook-from-frozen fish fillets. As in, just fish, not part of some meal with sauce and what have you. So I bought five salmon fillets (BabySLTD likes salmon a lot) for the price of two fresh ones AND I don't have to worry about using them up. They also had cod, smoked haddock and tuna, so if the salmon works out I'll definitely be trying some more!

I also had a scout through the frozen fruit section. They had lots of berries, so I got some for BabySLTD to have with yoghurt. However, the texture of defrosted berries makes me want to barf, I don't like "bits" (which berries added to yoghurt or porridge are), and I don't do mixed berries if I can help it. So I'm planning to use some of the frozen blueberries next time I want to bake (to make this, but with berries: https://www.renbehan.com/in-season-easy-rhubarb-traybake/) but I don't think it will do anything for my own personal fruit needs. I do, it has to be said, like a tin of fruit, though, and I could definitely make more of an effort in that department.

Weirdly, Mr SLTD has banned frozen spinach from our house. I have yet to get him to articulate exactly what is so terrible about it (something about it being wet), but I am forbidden from ever ever buying it again.

Our nearest supermarket is actually a whopping great Waitrose, so I suppose I should figure out if buying any frozen veg from there (or delivered from Ocado) is cheaper per kg than buying fresh from Aldi.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #106 on: May 14, 2019, 01:48:45 AM »
Chicken   12.00
Yikes! How many chickens was that?

6 large chicken breasts, not a lot!

Zola.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #107 on: May 14, 2019, 01:50:32 AM »
I had a bit of a browse in Aldi's frozen section today. I can't eat onion or garlic so alas they're out! Apart from onion, chips and peas it was mainly "mixed themed veg", which I suppose I could buy and separate out but that's not something I have room for in my life right now.

However! They had loads of plain cook-from-frozen fish fillets. As in, just fish, not part of some meal with sauce and what have you. So I bought five salmon fillets (BabySLTD likes salmon a lot) for the price of two fresh ones AND I don't have to worry about using them up. They also had cod, smoked haddock and tuna, so if the salmon works out I'll definitely be trying some more!

I also had a scout through the frozen fruit section. They had lots of berries, so I got some for BabySLTD to have with yoghurt. However, the texture of defrosted berries makes me want to barf, I don't like "bits" (which berries added to yoghurt or porridge are), and I don't do mixed berries if I can help it. So I'm planning to use some of the frozen blueberries next time I want to bake (to make this, but with berries: https://www.renbehan.com/in-season-easy-rhubarb-traybake/) but I don't think it will do anything for my own personal fruit needs. I do, it has to be said, like a tin of fruit, though, and I could definitely make more of an effort in that department.

Weirdly, Mr SLTD has banned frozen spinach from our house. I have yet to get him to articulate exactly what is so terrible about it (something about it being wet), but I am forbidden from ever ever buying it again.

Our nearest supermarket is actually a whopping great Waitrose, so I suppose I should figure out if buying any frozen veg from there (or delivered from Ocado) is cheaper per kg than buying fresh from Aldi.

Good shout on the frozen fish. Just remembered about the Alaskan frozen salmon fillets (caught in the wild) you can get in Tesco. Much better than farmed salmon. I will have give some to BabyZola!

sea_saw

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #108 on: May 15, 2019, 04:20:29 PM »
Good find on the fish SLTD! I bet it's effectively fresher than much of the fish in the refrigerated section.

Defrosted berries are awful. I eat them still-frozen myself. In hot weather it can really hit the spot. This might be one of those things I didn't realise was strange though!

I also don't like frozen whole spinach, it has the same sad gloopy texture as tinned spinach. But frozen chopped spinach is the bomb. All the rich green taste of spinach but without the texture. It's in tiny pieces that look like finely chopped fresh herbs, great in pasta sauces and risotto. Think https://144f2a3a2f948f23fc61-ca525f0a2beaec3e91ca498facd51f15.ssl.cf3.rackcdn.com/uploads/food_portal_data/recipes/recipe/hero_article_image/2089/letterbox_RiSOTTO_NO-CHEESE_P_593x426.jpg rather than https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSUoPmrEXnYtz55n4OqlexDHcZ7qPiPpFmcMbiLmF1AOlked4p-

I actually read on a trusted cooking site that to use frozen whole spinach you're supposed to first squeeze it dry. I haven't tried it but defrosting then squeezing it is basically the opposite of what I want from frozen veg.

Zola, I'm assuming that was like 3x packets of two chicken breasts. Have you considered using other chicken cuts? E.g. thighs can often work as well if not better than breasts. Of course I don't know what dish you were making, obviously this doesn't apply if you were cooking e.g. chicken kiev or something...

The other question is quantities - how many meals/portions did those six breasts make? Could their quantity in the recipe be reduced and veg/grains increased to compensate? Always worth thinking about how to best deploy your most expensive ingredients!

Finally my local butchers sells chicken breasts by weight for much less than that I think. (It's been a while since I cooked with chicken).

PhilB

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #109 on: May 15, 2019, 10:14:34 PM »
I generally find that you can pretty well buy a whole chicken for the price of two chicken breasts, so that's what we almost always do.  When you're in practice it only takes 5 mins to joint and bone a chicken if you want to make casseroles, etc with the leg meat.  Wings go in the freezer until you have enough for a meal.  Alternatively, just take the breasts off and roast what's left for a roast chicken dinner - that way you can get the legs and wings beautifully cooked without any stress about drying out the breast.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #110 on: May 16, 2019, 03:32:08 AM »
I use frozen blueberries for blueberry muffins and they are yum.

Speaking of frozen fish.  I've never known how to cook them without them going all watery.  Does anyone have any cooking tips?

dashuk

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #111 on: May 16, 2019, 09:12:01 AM »
I use frozen blueberries for blueberry muffins and they are yum.

Our freezer still contains a fair stash of frozen elderberries which we harvested from the hedgerows on the cycle path into town last summer. They are also yum. Must make more muffins.

CrabbitDutchie

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #112 on: May 16, 2019, 02:31:27 PM »
I add my frozen berries to porridge, the texture is completely immaterial by the time they've been cooked.

Still have a couple of kg of last year's wild raspberries, a couple of handfuls of blueberries and some blackberries.

Zola.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #113 on: May 17, 2019, 07:50:00 AM »
Good find on the fish SLTD! I bet it's effectively fresher than much of the fish in the refrigerated section.

Defrosted berries are awful. I eat them still-frozen myself. In hot weather it can really hit the spot. This might be one of those things I didn't realise was strange though!

I also don't like frozen whole spinach, it has the same sad gloopy texture as tinned spinach. But frozen chopped spinach is the bomb. All the rich green taste of spinach but without the texture. It's in tiny pieces that look like finely chopped fresh herbs, great in pasta sauces and risotto. Think https://144f2a3a2f948f23fc61-ca525f0a2beaec3e91ca498facd51f15.ssl.cf3.rackcdn.com/uploads/food_portal_data/recipes/recipe/hero_article_image/2089/letterbox_RiSOTTO_NO-CHEESE_P_593x426.jpg rather than https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSUoPmrEXnYtz55n4OqlexDHcZ7qPiPpFmcMbiLmF1AOlked4p-

I actually read on a trusted cooking site that to use frozen whole spinach you're supposed to first squeeze it dry. I haven't tried it but defrosting then squeezing it is basically the opposite of what I want from frozen veg.

Zola, I'm assuming that was like 3x packets of two chicken breasts. Have you considered using other chicken cuts? E.g. thighs can often work as well if not better than breasts. Of course I don't know what dish you were making, obviously this doesn't apply if you were cooking e.g. chicken kiev or something...

The other question is quantities - how many meals/portions did those six breasts make? Could their quantity in the recipe be reduced and veg/grains increased to compensate? Always worth thinking about how to best deploy your most expensive ingredients!

Finally my local butchers sells chicken breasts by weight for much less than that I think. (It's been a while since I cooked with chicken).

The meat was from the butcher, it wasn't enough. It was to make 12 small meals. Not enough meat really. I will go for 2kg and try again this week!

Zola.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #114 on: May 18, 2019, 05:33:23 AM »
105 spent today .... this budget reducing isn't easy!  Needed a few house staples...

On the plus side we got a hell of a lot of food.... a lot of it for the freezer also as backup.

I got two bags of wild Alaskan Salmon fillets which I am looking forward to trying with baby Zola.

Meal prep tomorrow morning for a few days and then we have lots of greens and frozen food for the rest of the week. The aim is to not do any grocery top ups this week at all.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #115 on: May 18, 2019, 07:57:56 AM »
@Zola. Forgive me if you've mentioned this before, but have you tried Aldi's formula? Its half the price of the branded stuff.

sea_saw

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #116 on: May 18, 2019, 09:35:28 AM »
The meat was from the butcher, it wasn't enough. It was to make 12 small meals. Not enough meat really. I will go for 2kg and try again this week!

To be fair 1 of meat per portion is not bad at all IMO! But depending on the recipe I'd definitely think about using thigh meat instead.

dashuk

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #117 on: May 20, 2019, 06:55:55 AM »
Haha, so finally got round to doing April finance stuff.

Between being away for a week getting fed by the in-laws and my parents, and eating down the Brexshit stocks a bit since the apocalypse isn't happening till Halloween...

...we spent 172 on supermarket food for four people for the whole month.

Zola.

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Re: What's your average monthly food spend per adult? (UK)
« Reply #118 on: May 20, 2019, 10:29:25 AM »
@Zola. Forgive me if you've mentioned this before, but have you tried Aldi's formula? Its half the price of the branded stuff.

I haven't sadly.. I am based in NI, we don't have Aldi.  My little man is 10 months now, so it wont be long until he is off the formula anyway.