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Weekly Groceries - How Much Do You Spend?

Forum Opinion Poll
just the basics - less than $50 6 9.52%
budget groceries - $50-100 28 44.44%
a few extras - $100 to $150 24 38.10%
the sky's the limit - $150 ++ 5 7.94%
 

Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

Posted By Message

DoodleEsq
LIF Zygote

Member since 1/10

44 total posts

Name:
Tracy

Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

Hi everyone!

I'm a newcomer to this board and inspired by all of your brilliant weekly menus DH and I decided we should start planning out our meals and cooking.

Before this new-found interest in dinners, we were spending about $30-40 a week on basic lunch food - salad, chicken, veggies, & fruit. But then we would often get takeout once or twice a week too.

The past two weeks we have spent so much money at the grocery store buying the ingredients for all of these meals! I'm talking about $300 in 2 weeks. Chat Icon Chat Icon And we're not even making elaborate meals, and most of chicken or pasta meals - no steak here!

Is this normal??? It's just the two of us - no kids or anything.

I was thinking of trying Relish Relish to get the budget under control. Has anyone used this service before??

TIA!!!

Posted 2/22/10 12:12 PM
 

SnickNNick
In our new house!!

Member since 8/08

2103 total posts

Name:
Nicole

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

It can cost a lot in the beginning if you’re spending money on things that will last over many meals (cooking oils, spices, marinades, large bags of rice, etc) but it will even out a bit as you have a more stocked pantry. We typically are in between $60-$100 depending on the week. We both make lunches every day to bring to work, eat breakfast at home every day, and eat dinner at home almost every day (maybe one weekend night we will get pizza or go out). Also typically buy TP/tissues/cleaning supplies at the grocery store when on sale and needed, so that bumps it up a little.

I do shop the circular and plan meals generally around that. If family packs of chicken or pork chops are on sale I will get that for one night dinner and freeze the rest. Some weeks we don’t buy any meat at all and just use what’s in the freezer. Usually any give week we only buy 1 or 2 proteins for 5 or 6 dinners. Other nights we will use what we have in the freezer. It’s a lot harder if you’re buying chicken, pork chops, fish, shrimp, etc, all in the same week since those things are more $$.

I do find that when I do menu planning and plan “fancier” (read: more complicated!) meals I do end up spending more b/c they often include ingredients that aren’t on my normal list or stocked in my pantry. As a result, I typically only do one new and different meal per week, if any. DH has “simple” tastes anyway and could eat chicken cutlets, green beans and rice every night of his life so he would probably rather I didn’t try anything new at all haha….

Posted 2/22/10 12:23 PM
 

JenBenMen
party of five

Member since 9/06

11343 total posts

Name:
Jen

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

I am trying to do better at this. DH and I live in brooklyn with lots of specialty food stores so it is really easy to rack up the food bill!!!

This board and planning is helping

Posted 2/22/10 1:19 PM
 

jerrysgirl
I love my hot dog!!

Member since 6/06

5288 total posts

Name:
E & J

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

dh and i cook all our meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) except once a week we go out. we spend less than $100 a month. i shop the circulars. i know how much to pay per pound for meat - without paying too much. i stock up when meat and veggies are on sale. also once a month we go the entemann factory outlet and get a bunch of bread products. we freeze a lot of items.

Posted 2/22/10 1:24 PM
 

SnickNNick
In our new house!!

Member since 8/08

2103 total posts

Name:
Nicole

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

Posted by jerrysgirl

dh and i cook all our meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) except once a week we go out. we spend less than $100 a month. i shop the circulars. i know how much to pay per pound for meat - without paying too much. i stock up when meat and veggies are on sale. also once a month we go the entemann factory outlet and get a bunch of bread products. we freeze a lot of items.



Wow less than $100 a month is great! I wanted to add that ours would be a lot less if DH didn't always want a bunch of sodas, juices, pretzels, etc.

Posted 2/22/10 1:38 PM
 

maybeamommy
Blessed beyond belief

Member since 10/07

17048 total posts

Name:

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

Posted by SnickNNick

It can cost a lot in the beginning if you’re spending money on things that will last over many meals (cooking oils, spices, marinades, large bags of rice, etc) but it will even out a bit as you have a more stocked pantry. We typically are in between $60-$100 depending on the week. We both make lunches every day to bring to work, eat breakfast at home every day, and eat dinner at home almost every day (maybe one weekend night we will get pizza or go out). Also typically buy TP/tissues/cleaning supplies at the grocery store when on sale and needed, so that bumps it up a little.

I do shop the circular and plan meals generally around that. If family packs of chicken or pork chops are on sale I will get that for one night dinner and freeze the rest. Some weeks we don’t buy any meat at all and just use what’s in the freezer. Usually any give week we only buy 1 or 2 proteins for 5 or 6 dinners. Other nights we will use what we have in the freezer. It’s a lot harder if you’re buying chicken, pork chops, fish, shrimp, etc, all in the same week since those things are more $$.

I do find that when I do menu planning and plan “fancier” (read: more complicated!) meals I do end up spending more b/c they often include ingredients that aren’t on my normal list or stocked in my pantry. As a result, I typically only do one new and different meal per week, if any. DH has “simple” tastes anyway and could eat chicken cutlets, green beans and rice every night of his life so he would probably rather I didn’t try anything new at all haha….



ITA with this!

As of right now, we spend around $60/week at the supermarket.... it probably averages to around $85 or so/week when you include our Costco trips.

We buy ground beef, chicken breasts, tilapia, shrimp, etc. at Costco and divide into 2 serving portions and freeze. We use those througout the week. I buy steaks from the supermarket when they are on sale. I'll usually also buy a big bag of onions, bag of garlic, bag of lemons from costco too.

For side dishes, I'll shop the circulars and see what veggies are on sale that week and plan the sides around that.

As PP mentioned, for more complicated dishes, I'll limit that to 1x/week so that we don't go crazy spending $$ on ingredients - and to be honest, I usually don't make things that have ingredients that I won't use too often.

We also try to make the most of what we buy... so if I make paninis with brie, caramelized onions, spinach & pesto one day... another day I might make chicken breasts stuffed with brie & spinach - or a pesto pasta... or whatever so that nothing goes to waste.

When we first got married, I was spending around $125/week for the two of us... now we spend basically HALF of that - and I feel like my meals are even better than before!

Also I am CHEAP for breakfasts and lunches! For breakfast I have oatmeal with PB and banana... or cereal (from costco). For lunch I might bring veggie burger (costo) and sandwich thins (also costco) or cereal or salad (buy romaine hearts at grocery store).

I also don't really buy pre-packaged foods. We buy a HUGE bag of rice and use the rice cooker. We buy a big bag of pretzels and make our own 100 calorie packs. We make our own biscuits. you get the idea! you can be a lot cheaper by not take the "shortcut" products... KWIM?

I can probably think of more tips if you want!

Posted 2/22/10 1:50 PM
 

rojerono
Happiest.

Member since 8/06

13803 total posts

Name:
Jeannie

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

We spend about $800 a month for 2 adults and 2 children ( 6 & 8 ). I think that's pretty reasonable.

As PP have said.. we shop the sales.

I also don't buy a ton of organic. When I was doing exclusively organic my grocery bill was 300 a week. That's just not sustainable for us. We do organic milk and some organic produce.. but outside of that.. nope.

We also know our prices. I will not buy a porterhouse for less than $4.99/lb in a supermarket because that is the normal sale price for that cut. I won't pay more than $2.50 for chicken cutlets. Once you start to get in a rhythm you will see patterns in the sales.

I also happen to be a huuuuuge sucker for marketing so I use Peapod a lot. It keeps me on budget because i don't get sidetracked by pretty displays and 'new' items.Chat Icon

Posted 2/22/10 1:56 PM
 

DoodleEsq
LIF Zygote

Member since 1/10

44 total posts

Name:
Tracy

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

Thanks for all your tips!

We do try and buy a lot of the organic and all-natural stuff too. We definitely do it for the produce - lettuce, berries, tomatoes - and also for the chicken we get. I think that might be one of our problems.

And like one of you mentioned, hopefully we'll get better at this as we go. I guess it just takes time (or more planning!) to figure out how to use things for multiple meals each week.

And perhaps I should stay away from Whole Foods Chat Icon

ETA:

Btw, these are our 4 meals this week, still can't believe all the ingredients (plus lunch/fruit supplies cost so much... and I haven't even gotten the shrimp yet!):

1) Chicken with Parmesan Noodles

2) Chicken Rollatini

3) Baked Shrimp & Feta Pasta

4) Pasta Caprese

Message edited 2/22/2010 3:08:36 PM.

Posted 2/22/10 2:07 PM
 

stickydust
Now a mommy of 2!!!

Member since 4/06

3164 total posts

Name:

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

We spend between $150-$250 a week all in. This is for DH and I, DD (3) and DS (6 months).

We buy mostly organic foods. And the total includes diapers, babyfood, toilettries etc.

Posted 2/22/10 2:19 PM
 

InfinitiGal
LIF Infant

Member since 5/09

153 total posts

Name:
Lisa

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

I went food shopping on Saturday at Trader Joes. For everything I need for lunches and dinners all week it cost me $70.00. Let me also add that I didn't need a lot of stuff I usually get like Cat cookies, sweets, chips, etc because I am putting my DH on a diet and refuse to buy crap anymore.

Posted 2/22/10 3:04 PM
 

MissJones
Incredibly blessed

Member since 5/05

21289 total posts

Name:
and grateful!

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

Since I've been doing meal planning, I'm trying to do $60/week for Dh and I. We will then do a take out dinner and lunch out during the weekend.

Posted 2/22/10 5:18 PM
 

heathergirl
Cocktail Time!

Member since 10/08

4978 total posts

Name:
American mouth

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

It depends.

I only buy meat/produce from Compare.

Paper products and cleaning items pantry items at Family Dollar.

Frozen foods and anything else I hit Walmart or Pathmark or Waldbaums.

On average, if I just need some basics, it's around $50 week, more if I need paper products, etc. Then it might be around $70 week.

I tend to make a lot of the same recipes because we like them, they are easy to prepare, and I can easily make them w/o a ton of money.

We never eat steak/seafood (FH doesn't like steak and I don't like seafood). Once a week I go to Compare and buy a 3lb. family pack of ground beef, 3lbs. of chicken cutlets, possibly sirloin (for stirfries) or pork if it looks good. Then I plan my meals around that. I tend to try to stick to 1 crockpot, 1-2 pasta, 1-2 beef and 1-2 chicken per week. Maybe a soup/sandwich night. I'll try a more complicated recipe on a weekend and only if I don't need to buy a ton of ingredients. We are so stocked now on spices, oils, and all those pantry staples that I don't need much else.

We have breakfast at home every morning and we bring lunch; I tend to bring whatever leftovers we have, oatmal, sandwiches, etc.

My only downfall is that FH is a tall guy with a huge appetite so I NEED to make big dinners so there's enough to feed him Chat Icon I've tried to eliminate as much food waste as possible though.

Message edited 2/22/2010 5:37:19 PM.

Posted 2/22/10 5:26 PM
 

JenMarie
One day at a time

Member since 11/07

7397 total posts

Name:
Jennifer

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

It's just DH and I. I typically do a BJs run once a month. That costs about $100-$125 and includes our meats (except chicken), crushed tomatoes, seasonings, oil (once every few months), toiletries, drinks, and cereal. Then once every other week we do a food store run for the miscellanous items: fruits and veggies, rices, butter, and dressings. That usually runs us about $100. I try to buy things in bulk when they're on sale. I plan my menu for the week (sometimes for 2 weeks) and buy what I need for those meals. If it's on off week for shopping, I try to use only what I have in the house.

Oh, and def clip coupons! You can use Internet coupons as well.

Posted 2/22/10 10:30 PM
 

dexsmom
LIF Infant

Member since 1/10

321 total posts

Name:

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

Wow...you girls are on top of things!!!! I need to start planning my meals for the week before hand! Sometimes I skip a week of food shopping, but usually I spend 80 everytime I go. I try to stock up on the basics, crushed tomatoes, chic broth, rice, soup etc.. I go to meatfarms for chicken, and have them slice them thin there. I usually get 3 1/2 pds for 6 dollars or so, and then I break that up and freeze it. Same thing with chop meat and steak when I see on sale.

I tend to have to run to the foodstore when I have a different recipe to make. I try to stick to what is in the house. When I first started cooking I spent a lot of money on groceries, even more than it would be to go out to eat! I have learned since then, but I still need work!

Posted 2/23/10 10:39 PM
 

MikesCutie
May 26, 2007

Member since 12/07

1478 total posts

Name:
Marianne

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

I spend about $50-$100 per week on groceriers. I don't have to buy too much meat because FIL is a butcher and gets all the meat for us. I just have to fill in here and there in between when he brings us stuff.

Posted 2/24/10 8:10 PM
 

DiamondGirl
You are my I love you

Member since 7/09

18745 total posts

Name:
DiamondMama

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

For me the key is learning to buy what is on sale and build meals around it.

It takes extra time and planning but I try to do this.

Also when things are on sale I stock up.

For example once a month or so Waldbaums has huge bags of frozen shrimp on sale--HALF the regular price). I will only buy shrimp when they are on sale (I use shrimp fairly often but this huge bags lasts me a while).

Same with chicken, ground beef, steaks...when these things are on sale STOCK UP Chat Icon

Canned goods--same deal.

Now of course one day you may be feeling fajiatas and sour cream isn't on sale--eh what can you do--hopefully you will have bought ground beef and shredded cheese(lasts a long time and is half the price when it is on sale Chat Icon ) so you will pay full price for some ingredients sometime, kwim?

It takes time--it did for me--but you get it after a while..good luck Chat Icon

Posted 2/25/10 8:26 AM
 

drpepper318
MIR MIR MIR!

Member since 6/07

8117 total posts

Name:
me

Re: Weekly Groceries - How much do you spend?? (eta: poll)

I make quick shopping trips for groceries throughout the week when I need certain things & then a bigger trip a few times a month. I probably average around $60-70 per week on food shopping. But in addition we also eat out a few meals a week at least. So all in all, I probably spend close to $400 to feed me and DH for the month.

Posted 2/25/10 9:56 AM
 
 

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