$100 A Week On Groceries

I had a lot of you ask about my goal of a $100/week grocery store budget for our family. Guys, it's doable. I promise! This shopping typically carries us through the work week -- on the weekends we like to order a pizza or Chinese, and we'll often hit the grocery for a Sunday night dinner like hotdogs or grilled steaks). So that is one reason why I'm able to stick to this budget. 

Here is what you are going to focus on if you want to aim for that $100 goal (and you have a family size similar to mine -- two adults, two young children):

1) Meals might be a little simpler than you'd like ... you may need to ditch the idea of the recipe that calls for 8-10 very unique ingredients that are not pantry/fridge staples

2) You'll need to think about what items can serve double-duty. For example, grilled chicken one night? Buy a more economical family pack of chicken, and grill enough to put a few pieces aside. They can be sliced and put in a tupperware, and you've got your salad topping for a future lunch or dinner.

3) If you really want to budget on a WEEKLY scale and not a MONTHLY scale for your groceries, then there may be some items that you won't buy in bulk any longer. Let's say, for example, diapers. If you buy the big boxes that are $30-35, there goes your budget. But if you hold yourself to the smaller packs that are $8.97 at Walmart, then you can spend more of your weekly allowance on other items. The price per diaper will go up, so it's technically less economical, but you're focusing here on how you can grocery shop here on a weekly $100 budget. Same goes for paper towels. It's cheaper to buy the 12-pack. But, for you're budget's sake, you may just want to buy one or two single rolls.

4) Shop for your groceries online, EVEN if your store doesn't offer the service. Use the online shopping at least as a grocery list builder. So, say you live in a place that doesn't offer the Walmart grocery service. Well, you can put in a zip code that does (use one here in NC - 28210) and then create your list online using REAL prices, well at least for the zip code you enter. That way you can see how it all totals up before you go to the store. There's a much better chance you'll stay to your $100 goal that way.

5) I'm going to show you below a Walmart grocery list that's $95.58. Walmart doesn't have the same BOGO sales that my local grocery store does. But I chose Walmart because grocery stores are so localized and geographically-based. No matter what state you're in right now reading this blog, you probably have a Walmart nearby. But if you're shopping at a grocery store, build your list around items that are on BOGO (if and only if one item rings up half-price and you don't actually have to buy two) or items that are on major sale. Like, are grapes usually around $4/lb where you live? When they go down to $0.99/lb, that is the week that you have grapes at home.

Alright. Weekly staples in our home ... let's go!

So, as you can see, I have 34 items, and this list enables us to make the following:

  • Cheerios
  • Waffles
  • Toast (cheese toast, cinnamon toast, toast with jam)
  • Coffee & half/half as creamer
  • Quiche w/ sausage, cheese, spinach (this can also make a great lunch or dinner -- uses four eggs, one pie crust, and the half and half)
  • Bananas
  • Scrambled/fried eggs
  • PB&J (assuming you already have peanut butter and jelly as pantry/fridge staples)
  • Grilled cheeses
  • Turkey sandwich or turkey/provolone roll-ups
  • Spinach salad with goat cheese, walnuts, homemade vinaigrette
  • Leftovers from dinner
  • Quiche with a side salad
Dinner: (Mon/Tue/Wed ... Thursday we often do takeout)
  • Baked sausage, stewed white beans, roasted okra with cumin
  • Grilled chicken with goat cheese vinaigrette, green beans, roasted sweet potato wedges
  • Spinach salad with grilled chicken, goat cheese, diced peaches, and homemade balsamic vinaigrette 
Toddler meals: (now that I type this out, it's looking skimpy on veggies -- so I'd tweak it to add that)
  • Whole wheat pasta 
  • Frozen peaches, thawed 
  • Frozen peas (Camille loves these in her lunchbox)
  • Hardboiled eggs
  • Peanut butter toast
  • Bananas
  • Slices of cheese
  • Sandwiches
  • Beans
  • Turkey roll-ups
  • Sliced cheese
  • Veggie straws
  • Bananas
  • Snack trap of Cheerios
  • Pickles
  • Cookies (you've gotta have a sweet from time to time!)
  • You could even use that 2nd pie crust and the rest of the peaches to make a homemade peach pie, assuming you have sugar and cornstarch in the pantry
With the few dollars extra that I have allocated, this is where you can plug in one or two more favorites. Maybe its some fresh berries, an avocado (which is another amazing toddler meal item), tortillas (great for wraps or cheese quesadillas), carrot/celery sticks, ziploc baggies, new sponges. 

Remember that using my Walmart Grocery referral code (HERE) earns us both $10 towards our groceries if you are a new customer! The service is SO easy to use and their customer service has been surprisingly awesome. 

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this list ... are there any glaring omissions? Do you think you could stick to a budget like this?

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