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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

How much do YOU spend in one week on groceries?

This is quite an interesting article to start off the New Year with, but I just had to share it.

Where does your family fall on this scale? Notice the American family. Does YOUR family eat like that? Is there anything fresh in your family's diet? And if you look at the food from the families that spend the least, it's amazing how healthfully they eat.

I've been looking for ways to cut back on our family's grocery bill (about $325 tp $350 a month for four of us- and yes, I count Elizabeth because the girl can EAT, I'm telling ya!!!), so I found this article quite interesting.

How much does YOUR family spend in a week (or a month) on groceries? If you have found a way to cut back, please share so that others can learn, too. Couponing doesn't work for me because I buy the store brand items of most things and there are no coupons for those. I also try to make the majority of our food from scratch, so I don't buy any or those boxed meals. Any other ideas?

I want to bless my family with good food, yes, but I think that using less money on groceries is a blessing, too, because that money could be used in other areas.

18 comments:

Sherry said...

I spend on average about 100 dollars per week for a family of five. We are ALL big eaters! I try to keep it at 80 per week, but it's not easy.

I do use coupons combined with good sales/loss leaders when the price ends up being lower than the store/off brand. For example, I got Ragu spaghetti sauce for .19 cents a jar, so I bought a dozen.

Other weeks I do all my shopping at either Sav A Lot or Aldi's where you get a lot for your money.

I do a lot of cooking from scratch too and plan on doing even more in the New Year.

I try to plan my menus around what I have in the pantry plus what is on the best sales at the stores.

Have a blessed New Year!

Sherry

FishMama said...

One other parallel I see amongst the families that spend less but have more fresh produce is that they live in warmer climates where fresh fruits and vegetables are probably easier to come by. I grew up in CA, but now live in KS. I spend more on fresh fruits and vegetables now that we live in the Midwest.

One great resource for price comparison is this report from the USDA on food costs: http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/Publications/FoodPlans/2007/CostofFoodOct07.pdf

It says that our family (5 kids, 2 adults) based on ages of each member could be spending $676/month if I followed the "thrifty plan", but as high as 1476 if I were "liberal." We are shooting for an $800 goal which is between thrifty and low. I shop at SuperWalmart and do price matching and make a lot of things from scratch.

This is a great site for budget fooding: www.hillbillyhousewife.com

Mrs. Pear said...

This is something I am working on too!

My household budget (food and all house stuff (cleaners, paper goods etc) and toiletries, but not including diapers and wipes) is $400 a month for a family of three with frequent, longer term guests.

I am finding that this is very doable for me, except for December when it was the Christmas season plus a 5 week shopping month! I can even make this work when we have company for a month and special occasions thrown in.

Like Sherry I cook as much as possible from scratch, including all our baking, and shop the sales and loss leaders as much as possible.

Mrs. Pear said...

Oh, I forgot to say, my numbers are a bit higher than many because we live in Southern California, and food is just more expensive out here!

(People who are visiting and grocery shop with me are always shocked by the regular price of things!)

Jen said...

We are a family of five and we budget $150 per week. That includes all groceries, paper products, diapers and wipes, and any meals we want to eat out. Obviously, we don't eat out much! We live in a small town, so shopping is limited to a few stores. It isn't cost effective to drive to larger, nearby cities to bargain shop unless I'm going to be picking up LOTS of things. I usually buy the store brands, too. I really try to offer at least two fresh fruits or veggies each day. The fresh items are real budget breakers, so I am very careful in that area. I also purchase lots of frozen veggies, unseasoned. They are the next best option to fresh. I like to make homeade, when time permits, but with three, convenience is sometimes more sane. I have learned to make granola and baked oatmeal to save on breakfast costs. I really just try to keep my eyes open for great deals and stock up on sale items when I know I will use them. The Lord always provides and it has been good to learn to trust Him in plenty and in want...

Paula said...

Normally we spend around $150 per week--somewhat higher during the month of December (2 children, 2 adults). This includes all paper items also. If items are on sale that we normally use, I stock up. Love to cook from scratch. But my, groceries sure are expensive these days!!

Blessings,
Paula

Michele said...

I am honestly not sure what we spend on groceries. I don't shop weekly. I shop only when I need to. I do most of my cooking from scratch and shop mostly at Aldi.
One of my goals for this year is to track our spending and see exactly how much we are spending.

Thanks for visiting my blog. I purchased our advent calendar from Oriental trading www.orientaltrading.com. We have used it for several years now and it was very inexpensive, around $10.

Katy said...

We have a family of 5 and spend $150 every 2 weeks. I try to be pretty careful :)

Cyndi Lewis said...

I try to spend $100 to $150 per week for our family of six. Most of the time I'm right around that. There are weeks where I spend less and some weeks that end up a bit more. I shop mainly at Costco as that is where the DH works. I also shop one other store for things that Costco doesn't carry or that I don't want in bulk. I've stopped buying prepared food and make more from scratch. When spring/summer/fall are here I go to local farmer's markets, road stands, u-picks for our produce.

Mrs. Mordecai said...

Thank you for sharing this article. It was very eye-opening, not just to see how much we spend, but also to see how little food and variety others have. We are so blessed!

Mommy Bee said...

I spend around $120 a week, but that includes things like diapers for 2, baby wipes, kitty food & litter, items for long-term pantry storage and all our cleaning and laundry products. Sometimes it's more because we are a family that really likes fresh fish (especially salmon and shrimp!) and fresh and varied produce. I use coupons when I can, but like you I almost never buy pre-made or non-generic stuff...so coupons are sometimes few and far between!

MyHeartIsAlwaysHome said...

We spend around $70 a week for a family of 3. Like you I count Megan because she is an eater! I am always looking for ways to cut my grocery budget.

Trixie said...

Hello,

Yes, that was a very interesting article. I am really amazed at the amount of junk food and soda pop some of the high spending families consume. No wonder they have a gigantic food bill!

Our budgeted food spending for each week is $50.00 for the two of us. We eat a lot of fresh fruits and veggies each week, so that definately adds to the bill, plus my husband really likes to have meat at every dinner.

It's been great reading all the other comments on this topic.

Take Care,

Trixie

Bethanie said...

My hubby gets paid every two weeks. When I go shopping I get enough to last us for two weeks-until the next pay check. I have a limit of $100. But, theres just the two of us plus dog food.

Lori said...

http://www.angelfoodministries.com is a GREAT resource! We also do most of out shopping at Aldi's (you can find the nearest one at http://www.aldi.com .

Mrs. U said...

Thanks for the link to Angel Food Ministries, Lori!!! I'll definitely check it out!!

I WISH we had an Aldi's near us!! OH BOY!! I've heard sooooo many wonderful things about that place!! The next time our family is headed out of town, I need to see if there is an Aldi's nearby!! :)

His,
Mrs. U

Mobunny said...

Our grocery budget is $125 a week for 6 of us. The youngest is 11.......we buy all the household needs with this money, not just food.

Scarlett said...

I find that ethnic markets have the best prices on meat and produce. My DH and I only buy halal meat (no beef for us though we don't eat red meat) which is cheaper and better for you. http://www.halalfoodauthority.co.uk/define.html I can buy halal chicken breasts for about $1.99 a pound at the East Indian market which is on my way to work. The Mexican market near us has produce for about a third of what you would pay at Kroger or Publix and it's better quality too. Also, they have shrimp and scallops that the Indian meat market, of course, doesn't carry. Trader Joes is a great place to find bargains (a bag of limes for 99c) but they aren't available in all areas.

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