Grocery Shopping Week One

$500/month grocery budget.

Monday I did my first round of grocery shopping for the month of February. My goal was to keep my spending well under $100 for this first trip. I only spent $66.95 between Costco and Publix. Success!!!

I want to spend as little as possible on the front end of this month so that I will have some reserve for later. This is not my natural tendency. I tend to splurge at the beginning of the month and come up short by the end.

There are two things I know about saving money on groceries. It takes 1- organization and 2- a little extra time in the kitchen.

So as I approached this first shopping trip, I made a thorough meal plan and list.

meal plan
Monday- salad topped with chicken and a side of vegetables
Tuesday- spaghetti
Wednesday- chicken fajitas
Thursday- chicken curry
Friday- homemade pizza
Saturday- dinner with friends (us), frozen pizza or leftovers (kids)
Sunday - eggs, grits, bacon, toast or leftovers

afternoon snacks: cut up strawberries, energy bites

I made this meal plan with FIFO in mind. My brother has worked in the restaurant industry, and he told me about FIFO (first in first out), meaning you eat the food that came in first and will spoil the quickest. It's common sense. But how often do we let our mood determine what we are going to eat versus what will make best use of our food supply.

Knowing my lettuce only had a little life left in it, I made a big salad for Monday. Avocados need to be eaten by Wednesday, so we plan to have fajitas.

Also, over the weekend I made a huge batch of sandwiches so we could grab and go with a quick, convenient lunch.


What I bought at Costco 

3 gallons of milk
2 pounds strawberries
3 frozen pizzas
2 loaves bread
1.5 dozen eggs
total 32.55


What I bought at Publix

2 boxes of cheese its (BOGO)
1 bag potatoes
1 pound pork sausage
1 green cabbage
1 jar marinara
small bag of sugar
large bag of flour
2 bags frozen vegetables
oatmeal (BOGO)
jar of planters peanuts (BOGO)
2 cans tomatoes (BOGO)
bag of mini chocolate chips
bag of dried coconut
total   $34.40

This first week, I'm relying heavily on the food I already have in my pantry and freezer. The things I bought at the store will be used to round out my recipes and for lunches and snacks.

Knowing that I'm not superwoman and that anything could throw off my plan, I bought some frozen pizzas for back up. Gotta plan for the unexpected.


Energy Bites

I love this quick snack to have on hand. It is filling and super easy to make.

1 cup dry oatmeal
1/2 cup peanut butter
1 cup coconut flakes
1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup wheat germ or flax seed
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix. Chill mixture in fridge for 30 minutes. Roll into 1.5 inch bites.
Store in fridge in ziplock bag.


  1. Costco pizzas rock! Good quality and a great value.

    I think your $500 budget is more than reasonable, given it excludes diapers, alcohol, and hospitality. An added bonus that you are starting off well stocked.

    We stagger our fruit consumption. Typically we buy grapes and bananas ( consumed first) followed by pears with apples bringing up the rear. Same with fresh veggies; heartier ones like broccoli or cauliflower can hold out longer than string beans.

  2. I'm just SO motivated when I see these posts! Thank you! I always blow the grocery money first thing, too. If you think about it, will you link the recipes to your weekly meals? I'd love to see what you're fixing and what ingredients are involved.

    Also, we've been watching toooooo many documentaries lately on Amazon Prime, and due to a show on meat processing, we've switched over to organic meat. It's KILLING my grocery budget, and I wish we'd never seen the dang show. Long story short, I just found a website with organic meat that delivers right to my door in 2 days. The prices aren't crazy, either. I've not decided if I'm going to keep buying from this company, but, regardless, I like anything delivered to my doorsteps.

  3. I've been doing FIFO but I didn't know it was called that! Handy.

    @Emily, we started eating less meat gradually before we completely switched to local, organic meat. We also buy our meat in bulk (a whole lamb, an 1/8 of beef, and a turkey this year) to keep costs down. I'm not even tempted by grocery store meat anymore.

  4. SB - I am mightily impressed - with your thrift and wisdom - and with teh good recipes.

  5. You inspire me! For real!

    Ok, I've got a question and it is going to sound so snobby and it is NOT meant that way! Promise. :) Making sandwiches in bulk. Um...is that not gross? Do that hold up? I honestly would never fathom doing that so I haven't tried it but for some reason it seems really gross to me?! Ha.

  6. I tried a Pinterest trick that worked great to extend pre packaged salad. Place a paper towel in the top of the salad before putting on the lid. My salad is still like new after almost3 weeks! I had no idea it would work that well.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...