October 2008 Grocery Challenge. Please read first two posts.

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
1.2K replies 103.6K views


  • cazspatch wrote: »
    I have a feeling that meat is my biggest problem - although i have cheap cuts we tend to have it every meal!!!

    Not necessarily a problem - we eat meat pretty much every meal too, and are not good at portion-sizes!

    You will find loads of advice on the boards for bulking-out meals - especially the OSers constant friend - the good old lentil! - which can make your meat go a lot further.
    I find that meals with sauces are best for this, as I can bulk them with veg, lentils, oats etc and no-one notices too much, wheras a piece of meat like chops etc. they do notice if it is small - and I know that you are only supposed to have a portion the size of your fist or whatever - but try convincing my DH! He'll only be hungry an hour later and go fill himself up with cheese on toast..........
    The best advice you can give your children: "Take responsibility for your own actions...and always Read the Small Print!"
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  • MrsMWMrsMW Forumite
    590 Posts
    I try to make an egg based meal once a week. Things like omelettes, egg and wedges or oven chips or even egg on toast are all quite cheap and help balance out the cost of meat or fish meals.

  • Also I have some lovely (woopsied) tiger prawns in the freezer that I bought a while ago and really need to think about using! I was considering a curry but have decided against it as I don't want to mask the taste of the prawns so much.
    Any suggestions as to what to do with them?

    I would make special fried rice with them and add any other bits and pieces you have including peas, baby carrots, eggs, ham - anything you have around.

    This is one of our favourite meals and very good and using up 'bits'.
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  • shelovestobuystuffshelovestobuystuff Forumite
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    Just found hubbys receipt from yesterday and it was £28 not £8 so have changed that now in signature.Doesnt look like I will end up within budget but it was a tiny budget this month to try to make up for that unexpected vet bill.
    "Reaching out to touch the stars dont forget the flowers at your feet".
  • BarneysmomBarneysmom Forumite
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    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    Hello, just popped in to update my sig after buying potatoes from Asda. I was very good and only bought what I went in for, so I spent £1.42! :cool:

    I made flapjacks last night but they have fallen apart, I don't know why, so I'll have them for breakfast instead of cereal for a while :rotfl: :rotfl:
  • sashanutsashanut Forumite
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    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker Mortgage-free Glee!
    Just been to Lidl & found the following fresh veg bargains you might be interested in:

    - 1kg onions white or red - 23p - my Mr Ts ones were 69p (!)
    - 1kg parsnips - 29p
    - celery - 29p
    - broccoli - 39p (shrink wrapped)

    There were other good offers also but not stuff I needed. However fruit bushes were only 64p & they had redcurrants, blackcurrants, goosegogs & blackberries...I got 2 redcurrants..

    Also went for the energy monitor at £6.99 & a door draught proofing strip at £3.99. Now I wish I hadn't spent that money as when I got home DH told me he'd heard that we won't be getting paid until 31st Oct:eek: -due to ' cash-flow' problems (we have a small business). OOps could be taking those items back fairly quickly!!:mad:
    New start JAN15 - NOT BUYING IT 2015 :eek:. Long haul DFW #145 : 2011 DEBTBUSTING : £5500 OD GONE, £2000 OD - GONE £93,610.30 cc & loan debt - GONE 27.6.14 FINALLY DEBT & MORTGAGE FREE :happyhear
  • shelovestobuystuffshelovestobuystuff Forumite
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    wendywitch wrote: »
    I saved up my receipts and updated today.
    I'm doing alot of storecupboard meals at the moment for several reasons, a rather large vet bill to pay and the dog's been put on a "special" = expensive dog food :mad: which will be coming out of the grocery money as my other dogs food does as that comes from Tesco. I also need to use up the odds and sods in the bottom of the freezer so I can defrost it :o.
    I know this will mean a large bulk buy at the beginning of next month which I could do without but it can't be helped :rolleyes:

    Absolutely sympathise with the dog food problem.One of our dogs was put on a low fat diet 2 weeks ago because he has a really slow metabolic rate and its costing £15 a week just for his food where we used to feed the 2 dogs for £5 a week before.It all comes out of the grocery budget too so I am struggling to stay within budget this month with that extra expense.
    Any tips from anyone on where to buy cheaper low calorie food for my big labrador appreciated,vet has told us to feed him on any low cal/diet dry complete mix.We did try just reducing the food before but the poor thing was getting 200g a day which is about the amount for a terrier and still getting fatter.
    "Reaching out to touch the stars dont forget the flowers at your feet".
  • phizzimumphizzimum Forumite
    1.7K Posts
    if you often cook things with mince - like bolognaise, chilli etc - then bulking them out with red lentils and/or oats will make a huge difference to your budget.

    I used to use 500g mince for one meal (for 4 of us) - but now I make one meal and freeze enough for 3 more meals. I actually think it tastes nicer with the lentils in - and obviously its healthier too.

    if you do try bulking out with lentils, try just a handful at first. you can increase the amount if it's successful. and remember it will need cooking for a bit longer. But then you have your freezer stocked with a base for lots of different meals for when you don't have time to cook.

    homemade pizza is another low meat/meat free meal. you can add a bit of salami or bacon if you need a bit of protein. make it more of a meal with baked potatoes. you can make the bases and freeze them for convenience.

    I know everyone's giving you lots of suggestions, (and this forum is full of them!) but how about making a goal to change one thing a week. you will soon notice the difference (especially if you keep all your receipts, as already said!)
    weaving through the chaos...
  • Some lessons I learned:

    1) Ensure you aren't buying habitually - only buy what you really need.
    2) Order groceries online to stop you buying "bargains" that you don't need.
    3) Keep track for a couple of weeks what you are throwing away and stop buying it/buying so much.
    4) As already mentioned, bulk out meals such as bolognaise with vegetables and/or soya mince/lentils.
    5) Meal plan and base your shopping around this - once you get the hang of it, you become addicted to saving!
    6) I make HM rolls for sandwiches and freeze as I found OH and I didn't eat enough bread and the loaf would go off before we had a chance to finish it. I usually get 12 decent sized rolls from one dough mix in the BM.
    7) Do a storecupboard challenge to stretch the ingredients - you will discover meals you may never have cooked before to add to your repertoire.
    8) As has already been recommended, use made up powdered milk for cooking to keep your fresh milk purchases down.

    Most of all, give yourself a break - it sounds like you are doing well for the second week!!!
    :D Thanks to MSE, I am mortgage free!:D
  • ravylesleyravylesley Forumite
    1.1K Posts
    Its about time I updated my sig so thought I would do so.Only spend this week has been my online shopping from Sainsburys £75.I usually shop at Asda but had a £15 off £75 spend voucher.Not doing too bad this month and might just make it

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