What's your monthy grocery budget? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 34 Old 07-19-2007, 01:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Trying to be a better budgeter after a new clutch plate and two new axels for the car put us in a tailspin, not funny despite a bad pun. Our estimate is that we spend $500-$600 a month on food. Takeout maybe twice a month. No eating out really at all. That just seems nuts!? We are 2 adults and a toddler!

What is your budget and household size? Are we nuts?

Vanessa - aspiring Traditional Foods momma of Graham & Margot
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#2 of 34 Old 07-19-2007, 02:21 PM
 
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No solutions here, but...
I'm really really bad at budgeting, but I really think that we spend more than that on groceries. And we're 2 adults and a not-quite-toddler-yet.

So I'm interested in what others have to say!!

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#3 of 34 Old 07-19-2007, 11:17 PM
 
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We eat traditional foods, gluten-and casein-free (which seriously restricts us on brands) and almost all organic. I spend right at $500 a month for two adults and a preschooler and a toddler who eat more than I do. LOL!

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#4 of 34 Old 07-19-2007, 11:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So maybe we're not nuts. When it was only me I was feeding I didn't budget my food, so maybe this really is within the expected range... I had no idea...

Vanessa - aspiring Traditional Foods momma of Graham & Margot
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#5 of 34 Old 07-20-2007, 12:02 AM
 
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We eat everything possible organic but no dairy or red meats. I buy chicken and fish 2X a week and the rest is vegetarian. We are 2 adults and a 4 year old DS (who eats for 2 BTW). I think we spent between 500-600 month.

"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication" --Leonardo Da Vinci
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#6 of 34 Old 07-20-2007, 06:10 AM
 
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we are 2 adults and 2 children (5 and 2.5, both pretty big eaters, like their mom and dad, lol), trying to eat TF and buying almost all organic - I spend around 500-600/month also.

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#7 of 34 Old 07-20-2007, 08:47 AM
 
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Family of 2 adults and 1 kiddo. We eat all organic foods and spend between 600-700$ a month. We eat both dairy and meat and have no dietary restrictions. We eat out maybe once a month which isn't included in our grocery budget.
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#8 of 34 Old 07-22-2007, 04:12 PM
 
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We are 3 adults (my mother lives with us) and a 5 year old. Between groceries and eating out, our food budget is about $1000/ month.
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#9 of 34 Old 07-22-2007, 04:14 PM
 
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2 adults, a three-year-old and a baby...

We spend about 600 dollars a month on groceries, not including if we chose to go eat out once in a while (which we don't usually), or my occasional lunch if I forget to pack.

 Grateful midwife and peaceful mama to three blissfully birthed, amazing children: dd (10)dd (7) and  ds (5).
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#10 of 34 Old 07-22-2007, 10:01 PM
 
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2 adults, on nursing and we spend 200- 250 dollars a month in groceries which includes, conditioner, dishwasher soap, body soap, deoderant, laundry soap, etc. We buy mostly organic and do not eat a lot of meat. We get a 20% discount at whole foods because dh works there, so take that into account also.

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#11 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 12:05 AM
 
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2 adults, 2 toddlers on $200/month or less. We buy some organic, but not everything. Produce is nearly always organic, unless its not an available option. Other household items are in a seperate budget, so the $200 is just food. We buy very few convenience items-I think just mac n cheese, cause I like the cheap box kind better: I know-weird I bake our own bread and cookies and other baked goods are always homemade-that was a huge chunk of our food budget when I was still working and didn't have time to cook! We do most of our shopping at Target or Dillon's (Kroger) They both have store brand organics, which really cuts the price on that stuff. We also don't do meat for every meal-usually 2 nights a week are vegetarian. My husband hunts, so we always have a freezer full of deer meat (which we use in place of beef-much lower fat!) , and occasionally pheasant or turkey. We do buy a lot of chicken (I don't eat red meat)-enough for 3 meals per week. I guess if I had to buy all that it'd probably add another $50 a month to our grocery bill. Hope that helps!
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#12 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 12:12 AM
 
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I would love to budget better. Right now I spend about $800. a month on food for two adults and two kids (baby is only breastfeeding). I only shop at Whole Foods and tend to do a lot of impulse buying there because I'm usually hungry when I shop!

mom to DS 7, DS 5 and DD 3 :
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#13 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 12:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 3kidsclmr View Post
I only shop at Whole Foods and tend to do a lot of impulse buying there because I'm usually hungry when I shop!
ALWAYS bring snacks in the diaper bag, and shop right after a meal! I'm sure it saves at least $50 per trip! I had that problem, too. I used to shop right after work, when I was starving, and I swear half my budget went to extra "that looks really yummy" items! We went through a period of really low income, and I forced myself to start budgeting better. It's harder to do when you don't have to, though!
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#14 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 03:54 AM
 
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Very interesting thread. Seems like we are about average on the grocery budget, we spend between $500 and $700 a month and that feeds two adults and 3 children. It really varies depending on if it's a stock up month or not.
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#15 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 08:37 AM
 
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We have 2 adults and 1 just learning to eat-er. He eats about 1/3 of a portion. We spend about $75 a week, so a little more than $300 a month. Not a lot of organic. Local produce a good bit of the time (we're in a CSA, we have a little garden, my mom has a massive garden, we have a great farmer's market) Milk that is rBST free. A liter of seltzer every day (my dh's problem ). A can of coke every day (my problem ). I cook every night, and we eat leftovers for lunch. We have been known to eat Ramen : , but that's cause I really love the stuff.
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#16 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 12:15 PM
 
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We have 2 adults, a 6 year old, 4 year old, and a toddler who'll eat everything in sight. We generally spend 300-400 a month, including paper products and pet food. I can get it lower if I strictly plan out every meal, but as of right now I only plan out dinners and have limited choices for other meals. We do have a small garden, but buy most of our produce..not too much organic. We don't eat beef, pork, venison, or fish, buy in bulk, and I typically make my own dough, bread, and baked goods. We also never get take-out and rarely get convenience foods. The key for us is planned leftovers. Roast chicken leftovers become a pot pie and pizza topping later in the week. A big batch of chili gets halved and frozen, and a batch of pizza dough gets quarted and frozen.
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#17 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 12:49 PM
 
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$400 per month for 2 adults and 2 little kids. Our actual meals are 250-$300 and the rest gets used for fresh fruits and veggies throughout the month. My 3 year old is basically a fruitarian.

OP, $600 for 2 adults and a toddler does seem high to me. First of all, keep all your food receipts for the next month so you can really see how much you spent, not just estimate. That could help you determine if you are wasting money or if food is really that expensive, or what is going on.

Single mom of 2 boys
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#18 of 34 Old 07-23-2007, 02:45 PM
 
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$250 a month for two adults and a nursling. We're vegan. I rigidly follow grocery lists. I cut coupons. I go to Costco to buy bulk items. I check out the farmers market - this week, we are eating squash and zucchini every day, because it was three dollars to fill a whole grocery bag. We buy *very* little organic - I wish that wasn't true, but we can't afford it. My partner works at a grocery store, so we get a 10% discount, so we shop there. I have a pitifully small garden this year - only tomatos and herbs, but every little thing helps. We eat a lot of canned, frozen, and dried foods - they're cheaper, but not as good for you. While I wish we could afford more fresh veggies, it's not possible right now.
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#19 of 34 Old 08-08-2007, 01:24 PM
 
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If we do not eat out at all we are around $400 a month for 2 adults, 1 school age, and one toddler.

I buy organic beef, hormone free chicken, organic dairy or local brands that I know are hormone free, the top 10 organic foods organic as well, etc. I'd say 75% organic.

I do not have room for bulk shopping unfortunately. But we try to do two big shoppings a month then I go back to the store to get more fresh veggies and fruits, milk.

when I have time I make our own bread but not as much as I'd like!

Mom of a 7 yr old, 4 yr old, and 1 yr old. Wow. How did that happen?
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#20 of 34 Old 08-09-2007, 04:53 PM
 
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My family is one adult, a 5 year old and an 8 year old...my budget is $350. I just upped that from $300. We did fine on $300 but our lives are changing a bit when school starts and I wanted to be prepared. We eat out once a week which is not included in this. I buy organic dairy and little meat.
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#21 of 34 Old 08-09-2007, 05:50 PM
 
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Our budget is $400 but we don't usually spend it all. 2 adults and 1 toddler.

Mama to (DS 7) and (DD 5), wife to DH

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#22 of 34 Old 08-10-2007, 02:01 AM
 
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For just dh and I we spend about $450-$500/mo. This is 80% organic produce, grass-fed meat, free-range chicken and eggs, organic raw dairy, etc.

We only spent $200/mo 2 years ago. Mainly because I was going to school full-time and not working and my grocery philosophy was "save money" not "promote health". I didn't buy much organic then, factory farmed animal products, and lived on lots of carbs. Real food has cost us real money.

But we also eat a much greater variety of things. I used to just buy broccoli, salad and apples. Now I buy at least 10 different produce items each week. I could cut down the budget if we had to. Mainly cutting out drinks (organic fair-trade coffee, and dh and i are addicted to Pellegrino and Gerolsteiner) and getting only grass-fed ground beef as we have steak once a week or so now which is more pricey.

Happily married to DH for 6 years, in process to foster-adopt 3 children DD4, DS3 and DS2. We may be bringing half brother age 9 one day as well! We are not infertile, we just have decided that since there are precious children who need homes there is no need for us to have biological children.

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#23 of 34 Old 08-10-2007, 02:40 AM
 
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I would say 5-600/month, but higher in the summer as I can't resist all of the delicious fresh organic produce, etc. at our local farmstand. We also buy organic meat by the animal, so there is a bigger outlay initially, ie buying a lot of pork or chickens at once. In lean times we have made it on less than 50$ per week, inclusive.
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#24 of 34 Old 08-10-2007, 12:06 PM
 
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Around 500 dollars a month for two adults, an 8yr old and pets. It could be less but I like a lot of variety. I enjoy cooking. It pleases me.

We spend about 80 dollars a month on local meats. We buy veggies locally. There aren't a lot of choices in organics but we buy organic when it's available.
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#25 of 34 Old 08-10-2007, 12:54 PM
 
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I am completely ashamed at how much I spend, and how much we waste. I spend over $1000 and I cook from scratch. that is for 2 adults, preschooler who eats well, and a toddler who mashes/spits out food

I am coming here to try to meal plan and budget. We shouldn't need to eat the absolute most expensive dinner imaginable every night of the week
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#26 of 34 Old 08-12-2007, 03:14 AM
 
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We spend $400 s month for food only. We eat 80% Organic ( I do let this slide when I now the farmer and know its pestacide free) All meat is Organic.
We feed 2 adult 3 teens and a toddler.

I would spend less during the summer because of our garden but I put the savings towards extra fruits for canning and jam
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#27 of 34 Old 08-12-2007, 04:56 PM
 
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2 adults a toddler and a newborn we're at about $600 we could spend less that does not include eating out but we do eat all natural free range meats from a local farm and that is factored in this includes all household and personal items as well
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#28 of 34 Old 08-17-2007, 01:08 PM
 
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$200 a month maximum for myself and ds. You guys spend so much wow! I buy organic fruit when its available (apple and bananas), brand names usually too. Maybe its because there's only 2 of us.
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#29 of 34 Old 08-17-2007, 10:50 PM
 
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I've been worried about money, so I went back and added up all of our grocery receipts for May, June & July. I was shocked to see that we averaged $572 a month!! That's for 2 adults and a nursling. Granted, we had an extra adult for ~10 days in May, and for most of June & July I was on anti-Candida diet - eating only meat, beans and veggies (so, meat or eggs at almost every meal). I don't buy as much organic as I would like but I do buy free-range chicken at the local HFS since I realized its the same price as the "regular stuff" at the supermarket. (we eat mostly chicken & turkey at home, only occ. beef or fish)

I really want to trim our grocery budget. I'm just trying to spend less this month without much planning, but I am budgeting $450 for Sept - cash in an envelope! This will include farmer's market, but not eating out. (we averaged almost $200 eating out over those same three months )

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#30 of 34 Old 08-18-2007, 03:02 AM
 
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I'd say we spend about $400/month for two adults. That includes lots of fresh produce and some organics.

A supportive military wife and mama to my busy boy and sweet girl.
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