My grocery budget is $300 each month, including food, household items and toiletries. Each week I crunch the numbers to see where I stand. Today marks the end of week three. You can read about parts one and two.Sometimes tallying up my receipts makes me feel like I’m on a game show, trying to beat the grocery budget clock. It makes me want to shout out to ya’ll, in my best announcing voice:
WELCOME to the next ROUND of COUNTING CRUMBS!
*cue audience to stand*
*hold “applause” sign*
Trying to stay in budget is like a game sometimes. You have food to buy, a designated fund and using creativity and smarts, figure out how to feed your whole family for four (or currently six) weeks without going over.
Given my track record, I’d be in loserville AGES ago, lol. Fortunately there’s not a big million dollar award at stake.
Because if there was, it would be rice and beans for weeks peeps – rice.and.beans. No meat, no dairy, no negotiations. The family would just have to suck it up.
Savemart – $20.95
la victoria verde salsa – 2.99
breyers ice cream x2 – 7
organic milk – 5.98
half & half – 3.79
frozen spinach – 1.19
Costco raised their price on half and half by 30¢. It’s still cheaper 50¢ than Savemart, but I would have paid more in gas to drive to Costco than the 50¢ I would have saved. Gas was at $4.49/gal that week. Ouch.
Ice cream for the husband and frozen spinach for the chicken verde enchiladas. By the way, consider adding a 10oz package of frozen spinach to your next enchilada night (thawed and drained first). I made it for the first time many moons ago without telling Mr. Crumbs beforehand, hoping that he’d eat it and not notice.
Not notice the green strewn throughout the chicken enchiladas? Silly, I know…
He actually complimented me on adding the spinach. He said it was really good and because it’s 10oz distributed between around 12 enchiladas, it’s not spinach overload in each one.
Just a suggestion to pack in some serious extra vitamins!
Grocery Outlet – $16.19
fresh spinach – 1.99
canned pumpkin x3 – 2.97
green bell pepper – .59
whole wheat tortillas x2 – 3.98
organic pretzel sticks – 1.49
cabot mild cheddar 8oz – 1.99
organic grape juice 32oz x2 – 3.98
crv – .20
$1 per can of pumpkin – score! Walmart has these listed at $1.49 each. Three cans is sufficient for my current baking needs, but I plan to go back when the budget resets to stock up a little for the rest of the year.
The green bell pepper, cheese and tortillas were for enchilada night (with the long-version spanish rice – YUM!). The juice for Mr. Crumbs’ imitation Italian soda and pretzels for snacking.
A note on Cabot – this company is a co-op, owned and operated by smaller family farms in the Northeastern states. They focus sustainability and produce a higher quality, all natural cheese because they’re not focused on making a lot of money. They’re not organic, but the “naturally raised” on the package means this is as close to “grass-fed” cheese as you can get, without the label actually saying so.
Walmart – $1.67
This trip was for some fun Halloween stuff, which doesn’t come out of my grocery budget. However, we were low on bananas and those do come out of my budget, so here ya go.
Grocery Outlet – $11.65
organic butter 1lb x3 – 10.47
green bell peppers x2 – 1.18
Mr. Crumb has been on a potato chip kick lately. Specifically, salt and vinegar potato chips. It’s hard to find a natural chip or at least one without hydrogenated oils in that flavor, so he’s been settling for salt and pepper, a flavor I picked up at the beginning of the month. He walked to GO specifically for these chips, but when I asked him to keep an eye out for organic butter (they had been out of it the past two trips I was there), he called with good news. He picked up three pounds and two peppers for dinner. But they didn’t have his chips…
Savemart – $1.99
So he walked across the street and found store-brand kettle salt & vinegar chips for $1.99. A good kettle crunch, but quite low on the vinegar flavor. Can’t recommend them if you’re looking for that sour bite. (A product review, just in case you were wondering if they were any good. )
Costco – $32.21
granny smith apples – 5.99
bananas x2 – 2.78
pears – 4.99
organic romaine lettuce – 3.49
fresh cranberries – 4.49
organic carrots – 4.49
organic celery – 2.99
pineapple – 2.99
The produce from earlier in the month was running low, so this trip was mainly to replenish the fruit bowls. Lettuce for salads, carrots and celery are veggie staples and it’s fun to have a pineapple sitting on the counter waiting to be sliced.
This bag of cranberries was my first of the season. It’s nearly a sure bet there will be more. I’m contemplating a week of cranberry goodness, and taste testing will be required if that’s the case.
Total Month to Date – $445.03
There’s still a whole week left, but how awesome that I’m under budget! Meat is taken care of for next week… I think… but we’ll need bananas for sure. I may be able to stretch the fruit we have an extra day or two, but it will definitely be close.
PS – Sorry for the lack of pictures this week. Sometimes I forget that I bought grocery stuff when my arms aren’t overflowing!