I had purchased The Complete Tightwad Gazette years ago at a jumble sale. It really is quite interesting as it has tips and tricks for different stages of life and frugality.
I was thumbing through it the other day and came across this table.
It’s a cost of food at home cart prepared by the USDA in 1993. It appears to be based on weekly spending.
I must confess, though I’m often inspired when I dip into this book some of the costs don’t work for me as the pricing here is a bit different than in the US. So imagine my surprise when I realized that ML and I fit into the low-cost plan!
It was a pretty proud moment as it wasn’t so long ago we were spending liberally on a near weekly basis. The big change was that we stopped purchasing as much packaged food even when it’s on sale. I used to load up on chicken nuggets, frozen pizzas and jars of spaghetti sauce. Now my focus is on menu planning and shopping the outside aisles.
The app Reebee has helped a great deal as I can select all items that are on sale, compare prices, and take a guess at my grocery bill all while on my phone.
Once I select the sale items, I make a note of any additional items we need and provide myself with a total. I note this in the app as an additional item. If my total exceeds the budget I take a look at which sale items are nice to have rather than necessities.
ML loves me enough to be happy that I’m excited about this :). He’s also gotten on board and now seeks out great deals or will even mention if a sale items isn’t worth it.
How does your grocery budget compare with the chart?