Grocery Haul {Oct. 1} - Creating a couple's grocery budget

Posted October 2, 2014 in grocery haul, groceries, healthy eating, healthy cooking, shopping, healthy living, love, living together, meal planning, produce, food, cooking, budgeting

For the past month, the BF and I have been keeping track of how much we spend on groceries and eating out. This is part of our attempt to figure out how much money we spend each month.. 

Read last month's grocery haul here to find out more.

So I'm sharing something super personal today! How much we spent on food during September!!! Yikes!

Our spending...

Grocery total = $511.82

Eating out/Going out = $148.84

The BF and I were pretty disappointed. This seems like A LOT of money for two people to eat for a month. We did have a housewarming party, so we spent a little extra on food because we served burgers, turkey burgers and brats at the party. We also made a trip to Trader Joe's in Lincoln, which doesn't happen too often. But those were the only out of the ordinary purchases. 

Neither of us felt like we bought anything extravagant. Since the BF and I moved in together, I haven't been buying some of my expensive healthy treats like kombucha. I've been trying to keep things simple in an effort to save a little money. We also haven't been getting fancy cheeses, and the BF has been buying cheap beer instead of his usual craft beer. 

As for eating out...We ate out together three times and ate out separately a couple of times each. (My parents also took us out a couple of times, but paid for us). I'm actually pretty OK with out eating out spending. 

We decided that we're going to keep tracking our spending and see what our average is after three months. That will, hopefully, give us a pretty accurate picture of how much we spend. 

This weeks grocery haul was all about stocking up on shelf-stable staples. We already have a kitchen full of produce - thanks to some free veggies from a friend's garden and my mom unloading her produce on us before going on a trip. We also bought a 5 pound bag of apples at the apple orchard last weekend.

As always, our grocery hauls are a mix of foods we both eat, foods only I eat and foods only the BF eats. (He's not so much into oats like I am and I'm not so much into mac & cheese). Here's what we bought (not everything is shown in the photo):

Produce: bananas, sweet potatoes, garlic cloves, shallots, onions, aronia berries (splurge!) mixed greens and spinach. (We normally buy organic greens, but they weren't on sale this week).

*I've never had these before, so I'll let you know what I think about them!

Legumes/canned goods/other pantry items: black beans, refried black beans, lentils, pumpkin, coconut milk, red beans, tomato paste, diced tomatoes, vegetable stock, 3 boxes chicken stock, large bottle olive oil, large bottle apple cider vinegar, 3 jars tomato sauce

Grains/breads/pasta: 3 packages whole wheat spaghetti, English muffins, whole wheat tortillas, flour tortillas, old fashioned oats, panko bread crumbs, whole wheat bread, 4 packages whole wheat and flaxseed frozen waffles, instant brown rice, orzo, tortilla chips

Dairy: eggs, plain Greek yogurt, feta cheese

Protein: tuna, bacon

Other: almond milk, chocolate almond milk, almond butter, Hy-Vee pre-made pepperoni pizza, dark chocolate chips, Dijon mustard, mac & cheese, cereal, Clif bars, Larabars (I wanted some bars for quick snacks as I run from work to fitness classes)

Total = $163.21

Weekly Meal Plan

Breakfasts

Cinnamon Toast Pancakes

Frozen Waffles with pumpkin butter, pure maple syrup or nut butter

Oatmeal

Lunches/Dinners

Roasted Sweet Potato, Apple and Quinoa Salad

Chicken Madras Curry with Apple

Turkey Meatballs over whole wheat spaghetti with tomato sauce

Cashew crusted chicken with green beans and roasted red potatoes (we got the chicken idea from my cousin Kristi and her husband, Avery)

Gingery Butternut Squash Soup (from my Simply in Season cookbook)

Turkey Chili

Snacks/Desserts

Green smoothies

Fresh juice

Apple slices with almond butter

Bananas with nut butter

Homemade guacamole with tortilla chips

How do you decide your monthly grocery budget?

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