Last week I asked what you would like to see featured for the Question of the Week series and I got some really awesome ideas! It gave me a chance to see what’s on everyone’s mind. And boy, you guys have some deeply involved questions in those head’s of yours!
The problem is I don’t have the brain power to deal with them right now. Boy, that sounds bad, doesn’t it? But it’s true. I have this Chicago trip hanging over my head, the last two days have had me all over town. Plus, of course, you know… other mom, wife and house stuff to attend to. *sigh* I can’t think about it. When I think about it I get overwhelmed I’m better just "doing it". LOL
I’m babbling again, this intro is all leading to the fact that I’m tacking one of the easier questions on the list. Both Biz and Amy where curious…
How much do you spend on groceries?
This is a great question. Especially because I think a lot of people believe that eating healthier costs more money. Which, is some aspects, it can. We all know organic produce is outrageously priced, a bag of soy crisps is about 1/2 the size of a bag of Doritos and twice the price and don’t even get me started on meats. Have you seen the prices on boneless, skinless chicken breasts! Yikes!
So I’m going to expand on the question a bit and not only ask how much you spend but also to share any tips you may have to keep the cost down.
I spend about $120 a week (that includes $20 of husband JUNK food ;~P) But I also stock up at Aldi’s or BJ’s onse every 6 weeks or so for a big shopping were I buy bulk meats and pantry items. That trip will replace my shopping for a week but it also costs me a couple of hundred. In the summers I also will shift my produce shopping from the grocery trip to the farm stand when I can.
SO.. What’s that? I’m looking at about $500-$600 a month. That does include some non-food items of course, cleaning products, toilet paper, and other household stuff on an as needed basis. Plus I’m buying some "Experimental" items for GreenLiteBites that probably wouldn’t be normal purchases.
I’m not sure if you guys will think that’s high or low, but I have some tips that work for us.
- I rarely buy 100 cal pack stuff anymore. I’ll buy the regular packaged snacks and if I’m worried about portion control I’ll come home and separate them into servings with baggies.
- I learned our unique produce schedule. Buying fresh fruits and veggies can be tricky at first. Things go bad, you forget you bought them, and then you just wasted money on rotten food. To help, I rearranged my fridge to showcase the fresh stuff and hide the junk. That helped immensely. I also, from experience, learned how much I can get away with buying for the week that we’ll eat. This will be different family to family.
- I buy meats in bulk and especially when it’s on sale. I routinely separate ground turkey and meats to freeze in easy to defrost baggies.
- When a pantry item is on sale I buy extra even if I don’t need them. If it’s a good deal I’ll go nuts! For example is whole grain Lipton sides are 10 for $10, I buy 10. I also do it with canned foods, soups, spices, and condiments. I’m definitely a sale girl.
- I avoid coupons for things I don’t buy. I used to clip everything in the Sunday paper and use the coupon as an excuse to buy something I normally wouldn’t. I started to notice my shopping trips were getting more expensive when I used coupons, not less! No more, if I don’t normally buy it I don’t even clip. It’s not worth it just because I have a coupon.
Alright, there you have it. I’m REAL curious to learn your shopping habits and tips!
How much do you spend? and how do you save?