$75 a week?

1:00 PM

$75 a week for groceries.
Is that even possible today in the world we live it!?

Our budget is pretty tight right now and we are trying to save for a house as well. My goal is to save as much as possible wherever we can.

Living frugally has always been a part of our marriage. I love thrift store shopping, finding the best deals etc...it is like a game-how much money can I save this time.

Now that Jason is gluten free things are a little more difficult (oh the days of buying 3 lbs. of pasta for a mere dollar).

We have also been going mostly dairy free and mostly sugar free.

On $75 a week.

Some weeks we make it and other weeks we go a little bit over but we are still in the beginning stages of it and learning new things every week which helps!

Did I mention I have so much fun with it?

I know I may seem really odd because of that BUT saving money really can be FUN!

So how do I do it?

I think the thing that has helped me the most is:

Meal Planning.

I make a list of meals that I am going to make for the week (a lot of people do monthly but right now for our family we are sticking with weekly shopping more on that later).

I am addicted to love Pinterest. A lot of times when I am browsing I will pin meals I want to try later on my Healthy Eating Inspirations board. When it comes time to choose meals (I normally plan at least six meals) that is normally the first place I go for inspiration. Any meals that I don't make during a particular week I will roll over to the next week.

Once I have my meals I then go through the recipe ingredients. Anything I don't have on hand gets written down under that meal.

Meal #1: Cornflake Chicken
Veggie: Broccoli
Starch: Mashed Potatoes

To Buy:
-3 Chk. breasts
-Box of Cornflakes (1)

I don't list anything else because I know I have a package of frozen broccoli in the freezer waiting to be used, potatoes in my pantry waiting to be used and extra butter in the freezer.

I repeat this process and then, once I am finished with all of my meals, I transfer it over to my big shopping list which I divide up by store.

I am planning on sharing my weekly shopping trips with you on here. I think it will be fun but also help keep me motivated!

So look for a post coming soon!

What about you?

How do you save money on your grocery bill especially if you have food allergies or special diet needs in your family? I would love to hear about them or any questions you all may have!


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10 Thoughts

  1. We're on a super-tight budget too, because we're paying for Brandon's college & paying off other debt at the same time. I have so many challenges to work with on grocery shopping, but it's so fun to be able to hit the right number (it's about the same as your budget!). :) I try to make healthy meals, and make alot of things ahead. Our schedule is difficult to deal with, with Brandon having classes and then working late + us commuting together to save money on gas, that I end up packing most of our food (lunch & dinner & snacks) in lunchboxes.

    We don't do gluten-free or dairy free. I always use whole wheat and rarely (if ever) use prepackaged or frozen foods. My mom has ingrained in me the necessity of making things from scratch. I try to save money by doing one meatless meal a week (eggs or beans for protein) and also using up canned tuna bc that is cheap. We eat alot of egg/egg-whites scrambled for our morning meal and are meticulous about eating up leftovers.

    Other things I do for successful grocery shopping: making a grocery list. I have a form that my sis made that is in the store order of Walmart (where we shop most of the time), so I don't waste time running around. I keep a running total in my head and have definitely put stuff back if I'm going over. :)

    All in all, thrifty grocery shopping is a challenge but I love doing it so that we can reach our financial goals!! :)

    1. Thanks for sharing your tips Naomi! I am really starting to enjoy making things from scratch! THe other night I made potato gnochi FROM SCRATCH for an olive garden chicken gnochi soup and it was so fun! What all do you make from scratch? I love leftovers :)

      Grocery list is so important! That is a really good idea about the store order of walmart!

  2. Have fun shopping. Justin does ours mostly because I am sick. (he LOVES shopping anyways so lol)
    Great post and I will have to check out that pinterest board!! <3

  3. This is such an awesome idea Katy! I'm already looking forward to these posts... well, I always look forward to anything from you! :)
    How have you found it going sugar-less? I think it's something I want to try to feel better just generally, but I think it's going to be really hard - there's so much to cut out! How have you balanced the cutting out sugar and still eating stuff?
    Ta, xo Rachael

    1. Aw you are so sweet Rachael!! :)

      Sugar-less is good and would be even better if it would not be so easy to cheat! Lol ;) My philosophy is-don't let it in my house. And honestly just not allowing it in my house helps. I do have organic sugar on popcorn at times and that helps.

      With anything I have found it is good to have treats during the week (ours are tortilla chips and popcorn).


  4. Have you thought about planning your menu from what you have in your house first and then just buying things that are on sale for their lowest price (write up a price book so you know what that is) to fill in the "gaps"? Most things go on sale every 3 months (the cornflakes listed above for example - my personal buy price is $0.99 for that) and then only buy veggies that are in season or stick with frozen (which also go on sale too - my personal buy price for frozen is Free to $0.33 and for fresh is $0.99/head).

    We have a family of 4 and normally spend $40/wk on groceries, toiletries and paper products. We can go as low as $12.50/wk if we need to but that's way tough. I use clearance prices mixed with coupons and our CSA share (the CSA share is included in our grocery spending). I do buy things at higher prices than my "buy" price but if push comes to shove and I only have $20 to spend on groceries that week, I'll make a menu from what we have in the house and then only buy what is below that buy price.

    A lot depends on prices in your area, but definitely think that you can easily do this! Just keep trying things until you find what works for you!

    Hope that's helpful!

    PS I post menus and shopping trips on my blog if you're interested!

    1. Hey Lea!

      Thank you so much for commenting! I am in awe! $40 a month is awesome! I am thinking I need to find a CSA around us here in NY!

      I am already challenged! I am thinking I am going to try to stick to my menu from stuff I already have this week and see how it goes!

      Also went and visited your blog and excited to follow it :)


    2. Aw, thanks Katy! I've been really bad about posting lately but hopefully I'll get back to that soon.....

      Have a great day,

  5. I too look for good deals and special offers first and then integrate this into my "what's left?" question and create meal plans from there. I'll admit that this is somewhat time-intensive, but it's worth it. Oh, and make sure that you do not spend the savings on gas driving around to buy the groceries! Common mistake when it comes to special offer shopping hehe.

    Also, we started purposely picking out days without a meal plan, like once every week or once in two weeks, which we call the "creative leftover day". We will go look what's close to expiration date, what's left of the fresh stuff, what's left from meals of the week, and then we will create our meal from that. Creative, not always a success but we stumbled over a personal favourite meal this way. This originally "leftover meal" turned out to be such a favourite that I'm being begged to make it (great way to recycle leftover meat, vegetables and eggs in one caserole hahaha).
    Generally I'd suppose that both caseroles and salads are great meals to recycle leftovers with.

    Imo, anything goes together if the seasoning is right!


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