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January 31, 2013

$80 a week Grocery Shopping

So I've seen a few pins lately with a list of things you can do to cut your budget. Most of the ideas are average...or good. But then I see things like- try cutting your grocery bill to $130/wk - and that's when I go... wait..what?!

Even on the Biggest Loser this week- one of the obstacles was to tackle buying groceries on a budget. They gave each contestant $10/day- for 1 person. $70/week for 1 person. While I love BL for trying to discuss budgets- I don't understand that at all...

I spend exactly $80 a week on grocery shopping- that includes wine people! You might be thinking- I've only been doing this for 2 weeks and barely are making it. This aint my first rodeo kids! This has been a regular occurance for a year now. Honestly I might have gone over once...for Christmas??

Here's my tips...
1. Get on a grocery plan. For usually around $20-$30/yr. you can have a program email you a list of 7 dinner recipes and they send you the start of a grocery list. Let's be honest- dinner really is the hardest to tackle. I use e-meals (watch for groupons), their low fat plan for two is wonderful! The recipes are deeelish and we usually have a few leftovers which Luis takes for his lunch the next day.
The recipes are only for dinner- and I normally cross out 2 to give myself options and because we usually eat out on our weekends or cook together (grilled sandwiches or quesadillas are usually a must). Life before emeals meant we were throwing away 1/2 our fridge every other week AND most of our dinners = chicken and potatoes. Really exciting right? I'm a busy lady: full time work + husband is full time work and student plus snuggling the cutest 2 year old ever- I looove it when someone else has thought through all of this for me!

2. Shop at Aldi's! I know it's kind of weird- you pay for things like grocery bags (plastic is only a dime) and need a quarter to use a cart (but you get that back!). But it's worth it. I'm in markteing- I should loathe this store. But it'd nice to just get the same items without having to look through 10 brands. I buy everything at Aldi's- except for produce. I have had too many bad experiences. Although their carrots aren't bad. This is also where I pick up my wine- that or Walmart if I want something specific- my personal favorite: moscato.
3. Shop at your local international food market. My local store is Valli Produce, in the area there is also: Joe Caputos & sons. Produce at these markets is just ridiculously cheaper. I love that I can go absolutely nuts on produce and not worry about my budget. I want my family to eat healthy- why should this hit my bottom line?

4. Do your homework. Every week, after I get my dinner recipes and list printed out- I go to Valli produce's website and check the local ad. It's nice to not feel screwed by your grocery store knowing you could have saved a few more bucks. More monies to spend on vino! :)

I know it sounds tedious- but if you want to save some moolah - it's not that hard! Plus after you get started it really picks up. I live in Chicagoland - the land of high taxes. If you live anywhere other than here or California... you can probably do all of this for even cheaper!

Happy Grocery Shopping!

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