My $50 a week budget
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  1. #1
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    Default My $50 a week budget

    My grocery bill has gotten completely out of control. It came to $139 a couple of weeks ago and so now I'm saying no more. We are a family of four. My new budget will be $50 a week. My budget will include food and toiletries. I live in the land of no doubles so there will be no getting $500 dollars worth of stuff for 50 cents. Anyway here is what I bought today:

    2 boxes of buttermilk waffles
    1 box of Delimex beef taquitos
    1 box of Tyson hot and spicy wings
    1 carton of pineapple orange juice
    1 carton of organic milk
    1 bag of shredded parm cheese
    1 bag of dinosaur chicken
    1 3lb bag of frozen chicken breasts
    1 jar of alfredo sauce
    1 3lb bag of gala apples
    1 head of lettuce
    1 head of cabbage
    salad tomatoes
    serrano peppers
    1 bunch cilantro
    1 bunch of green onions
    1 4pk toilet paper
    1 pack of toilet wipes
    1 pack of spaghetti
    1 pack of goldfish shaped flat bread
    1 bag of regular potato chips
    1 bag of sour cream and onion flavored potato chips
    1 18 count carton of eggs
    1 pack of whole wheat french rolls

    Total: $50.03 I went over by 3 cents which I wouldn't have if they told me the right price on the chicken breasts.

    I saved 14.33 with the coupons I did use. Having a calculator with me really does help.

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    Registered User G'MaDebbie's Avatar
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    I do not mean to sound silly, but how many/what kind of meals will be made with what you just bought? Do you have a menu plan for these items? Im curious becuase my grocery spending is out of control as well and I also use coupons.
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    Registered User moasmom's Avatar
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    Please know that I truly mean this in a helpful rather than admonishing manner: There are very few ingredients on your shopping list; most items are processed, convenience items.

    In my opinion, you could cut your grocery budget considerably simply by cooking from scratch instead of focusing on using coupons.

    The food and recipe forums here are a great resource for cooking from scratch.

    Kara

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    I have a stocked pantry and freezer. Sorry but I am not a complete health nut. I do like some processed stuff. I know that's not a popular thing to say but it's true. My pantry is stocked with basics and my freezer is, too. I don't make a menu for the week I go by day. I'm not much of a planner. I usually post what I am making in the what's for dinner thread. Tonight will most likely be chicken alfredo and steamed broccoli. A lot of the convenience things you see are for the nights time gets away from us or I'm too tired to make something. All of those things won't get eaten this week, obviously.
    Last edited by carlitasway; 10-05-2011 at 01:43 PM.

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    Registered User moasmom's Avatar
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    No apologies necessary. Everyone has their own priorities and that's the way things should be. I didn't say anything about health anyway. We were talking about keeping the grocery budget down, and I feel that cooking from scratch is a great way to do that.

    Kara

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    Registered User Lora88's Avatar
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    50.00 a week if you can sustain that your really good . however you said your pantry and freezer were stocked I think the real challenge is if you can eat for 50.00 on just what you buy that week If you can do it your awesome There are only 3 of us and I could never pull that off and I pretty much cook from scratch every night granted both ds and dh are hefty eaters but between lunches i make for them everyday and gatorade alone I think I use at least 25.00 a week I wish you luck
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lora88 View Post
    50.00 a week if you can sustain that your really good . however you said your pantry and freezer were stocked I think the real challenge is if you can eat for 50.00 on just what you buy that week If you can do it your awesome There are only 3 of us and I could never pull that off and I pretty much cook from scratch every night granted both ds and dh are hefty eaters but between lunches i make for them everyday and gatorade alone I think I use at least 25.00 a week I wish you luck
    I wish I could live on $50 a week for every meal. It's gotten to where I should only have to spend that to replace what I need and to add to a stockpile. Breakfast, lunch and dinner can cost a bit. Unfortunately I live where there is only HEB, Walmart and Super Target. I wish I had an Aldis, Publix or any other store but HEB and Walmart pretty much own my town. The kids love gatorade but I don't buy it often. A lot of the stuff I bought today I don't buy often either but there were some store coupons and combos where you got stuff for free so I picked up some stuff I haven't bought in long time. DS will be happy to see the taquitos. He loves those but they are so expensive. I got them for half off today.

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    Registered User HappyMama's Avatar
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    I have to say your Gala apples caught my eye those are our families favorite.

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    Registered User nodmicks's Avatar
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    I think you can do it. Meals might not be as interesting or fancy but it can be done. Good luck!

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    Quote Originally Posted by moasmom View Post
    In my opinion, you could cut your grocery budget considerably simply by cooking from scratch instead of focusing on using coupons.

    The food and recipe forums here are a great resource for cooking from scratch.

    Kara
    I have found, lately especially, that you do save money by cooking from home, not buying expensive items, etc. When there is a "GREAT DEAL" it is always gone, thanks to extreme couponing. If I do have a coupon, I use it, but don't take lots of time to try to use them. I use them when Harris Teeter has a super coupon sale, but that is it. We have set new guidelines for what we buy. Even ham lunch meat is expensive when you see the price per pound (3.29 for 6 oz. is 8.77 per pound). We eat lots of chicken, rice, potatoes, local (hopefully garden) veggies, all of which usually don't have coupons!
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    Way to go on $50 a week on feeding your family. My household is just me and in setp it is hard for me to keep to $50. That being said i did pick up stockpile items and trying to buy more local products. I also keep convenient freezer items for night when i don't feel like cooking.
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    Let me just say I tried the 50$/wk on a family of 3 (to males & me)... and initially it was hard b/c there were the basics to stock up on & "ooh look our fave such&such is on sale"... but after stocking on basics, it was entirely do-able! In fact, I spent usually around 40$ (to pick up eggs, milk, lots of produce & a little meat). Now it's just the two of us (kiddo @ college), it's much less!

    I think a family of four (depending on age/gender/activity levels) 50-60$ is reasonable.
    AND within that budget, when I came in a little under (say only needed 30$ of food), I'd splurge on a bag of chips or cheezits or maybe buy some baking chocolate for a special dessert/treat.
    Sure saving money is great, but if you're under budget, what's the harm in treating the family to a little something fun.

    Keep up the good work carlitasway! It'll get easier the more you do it.

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    Registered User ruderring's Avatar
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    I agree with PerSue. We normally spend about 50$ for the three of us. Granted I have a pretty good stockpile on general items. We buy some processed items for nights that are hectic. We even take our own picnic lunch to our son's football games so we don't have to purchase food and beverages at home games. This morning I basically only bought soda for DH and baking products for the holidays. Brown sugar and powdered sugar were on sale for .99 as well as marshmallow creme. Bought eggs, milk, cheese and a few other things and spent around 35$. Once you have a well stocked pantry you can do 50$ a week or less in my opinion and get very good healthy options with sales and coupons. Of course, I am from the midwest and our cost of living is significantly lower than a lot of other places. Keep at it and it will become easier. We have had this unwritten rule of 50$ per week for about a year with occasional overage spending maybe every three months or so when meat is on sale. You can do it. Good luck.
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    Registered User Paws's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carlitasway;1565892My new budget will be $50 a week. My budget will include food and toiletries. Anyway here is what I bought today:

    [b
    2 boxes of buttermilk waffles[/b]
    1 box of Delimex beef taquitos
    1 box of Tyson hot and spicy wings
    1 carton of pineapple orange juice
    1 carton of organic milk
    1 bag of shredded parm cheese
    1 bag of dinosaur chicken
    1 3lb bag of frozen chicken breasts
    1 jar of alfredo sauce
    1 3lb bag of gala apples
    1 head of lettuce
    1 head of cabbage
    salad tomatoes
    serrano peppers
    1 bunch cilantro
    1 bunch of green onions
    1 4pk toilet paper
    1 pack of toilet wipes
    1 pack of spaghetti
    1 pack of goldfish shaped flat bread
    1 bag of regular potato chips
    1 bag of sour cream and onion flavored potato chips
    1 18 count carton of eggs
    1 pack of whole wheat french rolls
    Total: $50.03
    I'm in no way criticizing you, because a $50 weekly grocery budget is really good. But in my opinion, the waffles, rolls, flat bread, and hot wings can be made at home much cheaper than the store bought products.
    The juice is more cost efficient if you purchase the no sugar added frozen concentrate and make it up yourself.
    The parmesan cheese is MUCH cheaper to buy intact and shred yourself...only takes a few minutes-even less if a food processor is used.
    As far as the dino shaped chicken, even with a coupon, usually regular shaped frozen chicken nuggets are less expensive, specially in a generic/store brand.
    With the saving on the above, a 12 pk tp could have been bought instead of the 4 pk, and you would have still been way below your budget...

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    Registered User Paws's Avatar
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    Oopppsss...double post...:/

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