Grocery Shopping budget thread

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  • apple_mintapple_mint Forumite
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    We take out £180 cash a month as a grocery budget. We do a big monthly shop the first week (milk, orange juice, herbs, spices, flour, meat etc.) and then get the fruit and veggies weekly. There's just OH and myself but we keep a well stocked pantry, storecupboard and 2 full freezers. Anything not spent goes into another envelope for when we go on our Costco trip (once, or maybe twice a year) for the big stock up on washing powder, toilet rolls, bulk herb buying etc.

    We make our own bread, yoghurt, wine :D, cook from scratch and do all our own baking. We buy locally reared meat and use the local farmers market. In reality we don't actually 'eat' or use £180 of groceries as we use some of the unused or saved budget for occasional meals out or to buy some kitchen equipment.

    We've been using a £180 cash budget per month for the last two years and were going to put it up to £200 per month for 2009, but I'm trying to stick to £180 and put the extra £20 towards savings.
    Enjoying an MSE OS life :D
  • tessie_beartessie_bear Forumite
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    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Mortgage-free Glee!
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    this is a very interesting thread...thanx to all who have contributed....id like to share what i do but it keeps changing....so when i have refined my methods ill be back:D
    onwards and upwards
  • lynzpowerlynzpower Forumite
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    Mines about 45pw- 2 adults & a dog. All cleaning stuff, all toiletries included. Its generally works out OK. I too grab bargains for the freezer when I can

    I get the dogs food from Pets at home now, as its cheaper than supermarkets. She used to have pate trays or cesar type things, ( 50p for a tiny tray- she can eat 3 for tea) but now shes on nature diet/ wainwrights trays from PAH. which are about 75p and 3x the size of the cesar trays. I reckon on her food costing about 10-15 less per month now we are buying organic from notoriously expensive PAH! Her breath is a lot better now too :D

    With this saving on her food its meant we have been able to "step up" a bit and get more from M&S/ waitrose.

    I get the 10er deals with a big chicken that can do us 3 meals if we have one that week.

    been getting the big minces from M&S for 2 trays for 4.00 ( much cheaper than sainsburys etc)

    I get toiletries from pound shops, boots outlet, and I always have a good stash. Managed to get a fair bit on the boots sale so that should last us a couple of months when it arrives and Im pleased this year got lots of posh toiletries for Xmas so that should see us through for a while.
    :beer: Well aint funny how its the little things in life that mean the most? Not where you live, the car you drive or the price tag on your clothes.
    Theres no dollar sign on piece of mind
    This Ive come to know...
    So if you agree have a drink with me, raise your glasses for a toast :beer:
  • We are 2 adults, one toddler (2), three cats.
    I take out £400 a month and place it in a seperate purse (like someone else in this thread did).

    This covers all food, beer, wine, toiletries, cat food and cat litter, fuel. I usually spend about £280 a month, the remaining £120 odd go into our savings account at the end of the month.
  • plumduff55plumduff55 Forumite
    613 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts Name Dropper Hung up my suit!
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    I spend £80 each month for myself and 1 cat - this amount covers all food, cleaning, toiletries, couple bottles of wine and cat food. I live really well on this amount.

    I have a calendar pinned inside a kitchen cupboard door and each month I write my menus onto this, I refer to this daily and tick off meals when used.

    On the first Saturday of the month I leave before 9am for my mega shopping morning. Firstly I go to Aldi, then Farmfoods (just next door to Aldi). I then sit in the car and cross off everything I've bought from my list. Next I drive about 2 miles to Asda and finish my shopping. I usually spend between £50 and £60, what's leftover is kept in a separate purse and pays for bread, milk and extras during the month.

    The next day I do a batch cooking and depending on what's needed I will cook chilli, bolognaise sauce, mince, curry, stew or tomato sauce for pasta or pizza. I then freeze in individual containers, once frozen I remove from containers, wrap in clingfilm and label (takes less room in the freezer). I also prepare some larger amounts for visitors. At the moment I have a 2lb uncooked meatloaf, 1lb ready to cook meatballs and a large container of chilli.

    Most Sunday afternoons I do some baking as I never buy biscuits or cakes, but always have homebaking in the cupboards. The only thing I do buy is bread.

    After reading this back I realise how organised I am, this has crept on me gradually over the years - it does make for an easy moneysaving life :)
    Debt free - Mortgage free - Work free ( in that order :) )
  • grannytwicegrannytwice Forumite
    151 Posts
    Part of the Furniture
    I spend 40 pounds a week for 3 adults and 1 cat i try to meal plan and streeeetch as much as i can. Now gind down granulated sugar to make caster suger i do bake a lot and scratch cook as much as possible,
    Does anyone know if you can blitz porridge oats to make oatmeal or are they two different things i wondered about using value oats to make oatcakes or stuffing has anyone tried doing this oatcakes are scrummy with cheese or homemade soup
  • JulimkJulimk Forumite
    349 Posts
    My budget for this month is £120 & I have come under this amount the last 3 months, so it should be OK.

    This is for me & DD, who will be 10 in 3 weeks time & eats loads. This includes food, toiletries, cleaning stuff & the hamster’s food & bedding. I don’t include alcohol (this is being cut back separately), eating out (we both take pack-ups & eating out is a treat) or take-aways (can’t remember the last time I bought one!)

    I am still mainly shopping at Mr T & Mr S, which are really the only options in my town. My budget is too small to justify the petrol to go anywhere else & we don’t have Aldi/Lidl/Netto or Wilkinsons, or Poundstore etc.

    Since doing the grocery challenge I have found that I have less ‘value’ or ‘basics’ stuff & more branded stuff, but have cut the budget from a shocking £300+.
  • CARRENACARRENA Forumite
    27 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
    £50 a month for 2 cats and 2 adults which includes cleaning supplies, food, and any alcohol.

    Wow wicked kitten- how do you do it???


    Okay so I am trying on £35pw for me, my fella (who is a bread fiend) and our two HUGE dogs- bullmastiff boy and great dane !!!!!!

    Need help though on reducing further. Have only just started and obviously will take time but very determined!!!
    Any help welcome, specially from wickedkitten!!1
    Debt free, smiling and working hard to be the best that I can be!
    To achieve my goals I have to realise that everything starts with me
    :A:A:A
  • BoodleBoodle Forumite
    1.1K Posts
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    We are aiming to spend around £25 per week, including tolietries and cleaning products. We shop at Asda which seems to be cheaper for us. We also found Pets at Home cheaper for the cat's food. Everything is just topped up whenever we run out, rather than say a monthly trip specifically for washing powder and saop, etc.

    The main thing is that I meal plan, and put a good few hours (broken up, of course!) into doing this and researching the costs so we get a healthy balanced diet on a budget. I use mysupermarket to work out estimates of what it is going to cost, then I can replace meals or look for cheaper subsitutes or whatever. We buy only what is on the meal plans - three meals a day with fruit and an economical bake or two for snacking - and nothing else. If we run out of bread, we run out of bread and will have porridge for breakfast, pasta instead of a sandwich or potatoes with the stew instead. This week I forgot to add oats to my list as didn't realised how low we were - no problem; this week we will have the cornflakes or toast for breakie and I made an American coffee cake instead of flapjacks. I keep a stash of dried milk which wil be handy if we run out. But mostly, I tend to be organised enough to know how much we are going to need and just buy that - it's only if I have unexpected guests to feed that might catch me unaware but I generally just work the meals around to compensate or dish up something like a pasta/rice salad using whatever salad ingredients are lurking, or cheese scones which are usually always appreciated!
    Love and compassion to all x
  • We budget £100 per month for me and OH. This is for food and cleaning stuff but not alcohol or takeaways. I think we are doing pretty well as we still have treats just buy them on offer! Thats for 3 meals a day mostly too, prob 2/3 meals out or takeaways a month out of diff budget.
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