Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    • 9,343Posts
    • 17,889Thanks
    zippychick
    September 2011 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    September 2011 Grocery Challenge 4th Jun 11 at 11:19 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the ninth Grocery Challenge of 2011,

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your August budget, then keep on posting in the August 2011 Grocery Challenge

    As always this challenge is to reduce your own grocery budget to levels that you will be pleased with, not forgetting that we always recommend that you stay inside your own comfort levels and take things gently one step at a time. Remember that this is not a competition....it's designed to take you and your grocery spending to a level you are happy with.

    If you are new to the challenge I have quoted the advice from Galtizz below which will help you get started.

    Please post into this thread for help and advice and support at any time. Good luck to everyone taking part!

    I have said this before, but for all the newbies to the challenge;

    For the first month I took a guess at the budget but I really had no idea how much I was spending.

    I found the best thing is to have a guess the first month but SAVE ALL OF YOUR RECEIPTS (and yes, that does include the ones from the local shop when you run out of milk ), then at the end of the month add them all up and have a look if you were on budget, if not, it doesn't matter because your budget was a guess. For the next month you can use the total of your receipts and take a bit off to get a realistic budget, just shave off as much as you think you can, it could be 1 a week or 20 a week.

    If you are currently spending 200 a month don't suddenly drop it to 100 - you'll never do it but if you cut 20 a month off for a few months you'll get there eventually without feeling you're missing out on anything.

    You might think you've done everything you can in the first month but someone always comes up with a new idea and, if you try it you often find you save a bit more (unless you are SarahSaver who is an expert at this and could only save more if she turned her back garden into a paddy field and lived on rice ) In the first month I thought, I'm planning meals, I couldn't possibly save any more, but then I started double cooking and freezing, and making soup instead of buying it in tins.

    I've been doing this since Feb but only saved ALL of my receipts last month, it has given me a much better idea of where it is all going. Budget for next month is 80 for 2 of us, I'll start on 30/4. I could probably save more, by eating different foods but I can afford to live on 80, I have saved a lot of money since Feb. and I don't waste food or money any more. So I'm happy with my budget.
    For quidelines on posting in this thread please read the second post in this thread.

    For the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #3, #4, #5 and #6 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Zip
    Last edited by zippychick; 31-08-2011 at 9:44 PM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 29
    • cattysmum
    • By cattysmum 12th Sep 11, 3:37 PM
    • 1,256 Posts
    • 21,417 Thanks
    cattysmum
    Just a top up spend today at Morribobs, Bread, Comfort, which I don't really need but was a bargain and I had a voucher, Im on nights this week so various packing up bits. A christmas pressie from Lloyds chemist, all Olay stuff reduced I got a Night face cream should have been 9+ got it for just over 4. Im hoping to have a few NSDs too as Im usually in bed till after lunch!!
    [B]SPC No. 295 - SPC No10 target 350
    #1603/
    SPC 2014 150/SPC 2015 256SPC 2016 324
    Saving for Florida 2018
    Matched betting toe dipper.
  • CompBunny
    Reporting a 3 spend for Friday 9th and 37.19 for today. We had almost run out of food so the 37 is hopefully a little higher than usual.

    Am I allowed to post a breakdown of items/prices from the reciept on here for some pointers from more experienced savers?

    In some exciting news, my partner has been invited for a second interview with a company for a job he would love!
    GC2012: Nov 130.52/125
    GC2011:Sept:215
    Oct:123.98Nov:120Dec:138Feb:94.72

    Quit smoking 10am 17/02/11 - 4315 saved as of Nov'12

    Engaged to my best friend 08/2012

  • seductivesmile
    Reporting a 3 spend for Friday 9th and 37.19 for today. We had almost run out of food so the 37 is hopefully a little higher than usual.

    Am I allowed to post a breakdown of items/prices from the reciept on here for some pointers from more experienced savers?

    In some exciting news, my partner has been invited for a second interview with a company for a job he would love!
    Originally posted by CompBunny

    Go For it! i would be greatful for some pointers too, moreso on how to keep out of shops as i have got so much food in, but never use it, like today i nipped to Al*i for the cauli, broccoli, carrots and onions on super 6 (onions for chutney) then to li*l, for red onions, and then Sainsbugs for dried fruit to make the xmas mincemeat and spent ~ 25 on not much to use now!

    SS xx
    Each day is a new beginning, look at what you have an be grateful for every tiny thing. You don't know when it may be taken away.
    • Islandmaid
    • By Islandmaid 12th Sep 11, 4:33 PM
    • 3,104 Posts
    • 42,194 Thanks
    Islandmaid
    Hi all,

    Just a quick check in, NSD today

    Hope your all having a good day, HM chicken, ham and leek pie tonight YUM (I hope) lol

    Take care x
    Note to self - STOP SPENDING MONEY !!
  • ThrivingOnThrift
    Saw this the other day and ummed and ahhed as had some gross experiences with frozen mince before - and some good ones i have to say - will give it a try, be madness not to at that price! Can you cook direct from frozen with this one TOT?

    NSD as went out last night and have no energy to do anything really.
    Originally posted by TrixieB
    Hello! Yes, you can cook this one direct from frozen. It didn't have quite as firm a texture as 'normal' fresh mince, but in this it was fine. Hope you get on ok with it if you try it!
    September Grocery Challenge 236.28/260
  • CompBunny
    Thankyou SS,

    Here goes, I'm sure some of you will be utterly appalled but trust me it is an improvement on what we may have bought in the past!
    This is for two of us.

    TOILETRIES
    Conditioner 0.72
    Deodorant 1.44
    2 x Toothpaste 2.57
    12 x Loo roll 3.99

    Frozen
    2 x Pizza 1.98
    Vegetarian Sausages 1.50
    Vegetarian chicken nuggets 1.50
    Quorn mince 2 500g

    Fresh
    Onions 1
    Strawberries 0.50
    Bananas 0.49
    Apples 1.50
    Baby Plum Tomatoes 0.60 (yellow sticker)
    2 x Fresh Tortelloni 2.50
    Value Yoghurts 0.29
    Organic Milk 1.55
    Bread 0.45 (yellow sticker)
    F/R Eggs 0.89

    Cupboards

    Peanuts 0.99
    Tomato Puree 0.35
    3 x value tin Kidney beans 0.48
    2 x value tin Plum tomatoes 0.62
    Sweet and Sour sauce x 2 1.59 (enough for 4 meals each)
    Value pasta sauce 0.29
    Wholewheat spaghetti 0.89 (none of the 22p penne left!)
    Value chocolate snowballs 0.45
    Value Bran Flakes 0.77
    2x Wheat&White tortilla Wraps 2
    Mayonnaise 1 (cheaper available but eggs not FR)
    Value chocolate digestives 0.39
    Value choc chip cookies
    0.42
    2 x pasta n sauce 1.50 (supposed to be 2 for 1 but they didn't do it on the bill!)

    TOTAL: 37.19

    Now, the things I have highlighted in red are things that I know are naughty. I don't know what else to say apart from FAIL on these purchases Any advice on avoiding? I had a list with me and also my partner.

    Can anyone identify some other naughty spending habits from this? I'm sure there are loads that I don't even notice. Or somewhere I could save?

    The one thing I won't compromise on are FR eggs or organic milk.

    Thanks for anyone who takes the time to look!
    GC2012: Nov 130.52/125
    GC2011:Sept:215
    Oct:123.98Nov:120Dec:138Feb:94.72

    Quit smoking 10am 17/02/11 - 4315 saved as of Nov'12

    Engaged to my best friend 08/2012

  • Long tall sally
    Your list looks fine to me CompBunny but then I am definitely no expert but you should be allowed to have a few treats otherwise life can get too dull!
    Grocery aim 450pm.Spent 519 August, 584 July, 544 June, 541 May, 549 April, 517 March, 517 Feb,555 Jan, 573 Dec, 465Nov, 561Oct, 493Sept, 426Aug,496 Jul, 528Jun, 506May,498April, 558 March, 500Feb, 500 Jan, 490 Dec, 555 Nov,566 Oct, 505Sept, 450Aug, 410 July, 437 June, 491 May, 471 April, 440 March, 552Feb, 462Jan
  • hjanea
    Right I've updated my sig and have already spent 83.15 and am less than half way through. Did get some half price yogurts and jellies for DD the other day but want to get some chicken breasts (on offer until tomorrow in waitrose) for the freezer and although I don't need it yet I've seen comfort on good offers at a couple of places so may get some (?2) of these too.
    I have , with only one slipup (4.00 on pizzas) kept to my mealplan for the past two weeks-the main part of the main meals of which are coming out of the freezer. Can't really see how I'm not going to be over TBH.
    I think I need to plan lunches better, and succumb to treats and snacks on top of meals-it all adds to te expense and my waist!!
    Anyhow at least today was an NSD!
    Helen. Single mum to DD(7) and 2 siamese cats. Trying to decrease my debt and spending and increase my savings and lose weight-30lbs so far!
    Sealed pot challenge-1373-2011-80.52!!!! .Disney savings-378.17 + sealed pot.
    CCs-virgin1-73.58,virgin2-131.44,fluid-1650.75,sainsburys-1289.56-all 0%.Total-3145.33
    August GC- 44.91/ 250. NSDs-2/3.
  • TrixieB
    Compbunny do you have a Poundland near you? I find I can often get things like branded shampoos/conditioners/deos and also cleaning stuff for ... well ... 1!! a lot cheaper than the supers.

    Loo rolls, I buy the Springforce ones from Tesco 9 for usually around 2.00 or Floralys ones from Lidl 10 for about 1.70 - both fine, I won't waste cash on wiping bottoms!!

    Tortelloni? Any particular reason? Be cheaper to make your own gnocchi or just use normal pasta with sauce?

    Am glad I braved the rain and the pain to go to Asda now instead of Lidl as just got back with all of this lot for 3.38!!

    2x 1kg carrots 40p
    2x 4packs of ES Maris piper bakers 20p
    1x pack sliced green beans 10p
    6 frozen minty lamb kofta kebabs 50p
    large granary fresh loaf 10p
    2x packs of 6 cheese topped rolls fresh 10p
    1x pack 6 rolls 10p
    1x 6 pack cheese and onion snack rolls 31p
    1x pack sandwich chicken slices 29p
    1x pack of 4 aero caramel puds 50p
    1x bottle red wine vinegar 68p

    must have hit it just right eh?!
    Trying very hard to be frugal and OS - just plodding on and doing my best!

    • 76rosie
    • By 76rosie 12th Sep 11, 7:12 PM
    • 1,808 Posts
    • 32,272 Thanks
    76rosie
    Had a very expensive day. Am adding 57p to my bill. So now 21.45/60.00. Bought campells soup x 2 ( free) in sainsbob, cranberry juice (50p moc) bottle of water for friend and bottle of ketchup, total 8p. 2 boxes of honey shreddies( free, 2x 1pound moc), 1 perle le lait 49p( 1 pound moc). Won't have any nsd because I am not passing up free stuff that i can give to others having a tough time. Thanks to everyone giving the tips, i can see my deposit getting closer!!!
    • FoxFace
    • By FoxFace 12th Sep 11, 7:24 PM
    • 282 Posts
    • 3,122 Thanks
    FoxFace
    Just placed a doozie of an order online for Mr T's... they had e-mailed me a voucher for 15 off a 50 online spend, so I have taken advantage and am stocking up my meat freezer

    I have ordered...
    2 Beef Steak Mince 500G
    2 Unsmoked Gammon Joint 800G
    2 Minced Lamb 500G
    2 Finest* 10 Traditional Pork Sausages 756G
    2 Diced Lamb 300G
    1 Red Dog Frankfurters 350G
    2 Beef Meatballs 360G
    2 Pork Loin Steaks 660G
    2 Whole Chicken 1.45Kg

    Total before any savings 68.16
    Special offers -14.16
    Online voucher -15.00

    Total to pay after all deductions 39.00

    Game, Set and Match FoxFace
    Debt Free Wannabe 21.05.2017
    Total Starting Debt = 11,020.01p Currently: 7282.99p
    ~Grocery Challenge: May: 26.77p/350.00p~
    ~Fox's Vegan Recipes~

    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 12th Sep 11, 7:43 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    angelatgraceland
    I have been watching the James Martin series about hospitals and was impressed at the speed he made homemade soup. Needless to say I made some yesterday in about ten minutes! I made it with one carrot, one parsnip and an apple from my tree. Peeled and chopped the veg-blasted it in a jug with a cover on and a couple of tablespoons of water in the micro for about 3 mins-zapped it in the food processor, added 2 stock cubes and boiling water and boiled it up for about another 5 minutes! Yummy! 4 serving for about 40p.
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is 1500 pa 125 calendar month 28.84 pw for 3 adults
  • Girl least likely to
    3.45 spent on bread, bananas and milk today. Hoping not to go shopping until Friday but I'm thinking about starting the Dukan diet tomorrow to be diet buddies with a friend. I have loads of sliced ham, turkey and prawns already in the freezer, eggs and bacon in fridge. Some of which was going to included in meal plans, I could tweak around some things though. Never had a diet buddy before so I'm thinking it's worth a try to shift the last of my baby belly (youngest is 2.5, lol) even if it means buying bit of extra meat. Wish me luck!

    CompBunny - I echo TrixieB.

    I thought the tortelleni was the main "extravagance". Value Pasta, make a sauce out of frozen spinach, ricotta or regular cheese and some passata, yum!

    Toilet rolls - value ones are fine imo

    Pizza - make your own

    Sweet & Sour sauces, I know morrys make quite a good value version for about 40 or 50p, I add some extra peppers and tinned value pineapple to bulk it out. I think Tesco do one too, not sure about Asda. Hope this helps but you're doing great already
  • CompBunny
    Thankyou Long Tall Sally and Trixie B
    Compbunny do you have a Poundland near you? I find I can often get things like branded shampoos/conditioners/deos and also cleaning stuff for ... well ... 1!! a lot cheaper than the supers. There is a Poundland in the town center but we avoid going in as much as we can - parking is SO expensive and so is the bus! We can't park too far out as I can't walk far. But I will definately have a look next time! My conditioner is super cheap (70p 750ml) and suits my hair but it would be great to save on toothpaste and OH's sensitive deo, shaving foam etc. He prefers brands so would be happy with this!

    Loo rolls, I buy the Springforce ones from Tesco 9 for usually around 2.00 or Floralys ones from Lidl 10 for about 1.70 - both fine, I won't waste cash on wiping bottoms!! Oooh great to hear that those springforce ones are ok, we had a look at them today and thought they looked like there wasn't much paper on each roll but with a recommendation we'll give them a go next time!

    Tortelloni? Any particular reason? Be cheaper to make your own gnocchi or just use normal pasta with sauce? Tortelloni (we buy the spinach and ricotta filled ones) is a great meal for my partner to cook for us when I am too tired, microwave a tin of tomatoes, boil pasta for 2 mins and bam a decent meal - but for the premium your right its worth asking if he is happy to give some cheaper alternatives a go! Hadn't really thought about how expensive it is before
    Originally posted by TrixieB
    Thanks for your suggestions!
    GC2012: Nov 130.52/125
    GC2011:Sept:215
    Oct:123.98Nov:120Dec:138Feb:94.72

    Quit smoking 10am 17/02/11 - 4315 saved as of Nov'12

    Engaged to my best friend 08/2012

  • CompBunny

    CompBunny - I echo TrixieB.

    I thought the tortelleni was the main "extravagance". Value Pasta, make a sauce out of frozen spinach, ricotta or regular cheese and some passata, yum!

    Toilet rolls - value ones are fine imo

    Pizza - make your own

    Sweet & Sour sauces, I know morrys make quite a good value version for about 40 or 50p, I add some extra peppers and tinned value pineapple to bulk it out. I think Tesco do one too, not sure about Asda. Hope this helps but you're doing great already
    Originally posted by Girl least likely to
    Thankyou, I didn't know about the value sauces, will hunt harder in Tesco! Extra pineapple is a good way to sneak in extra 5-a-day, and I usually keep a jar of peppers (or frozen) on hand. Mmm sounds yummy!

    Do you find that making your own pizza works out much cheaper? Actually thats a silly question as you wouldn't have mentioned it otherwise

    It doesn't feel like we are doing great compared with a lot of other people on here We have been so bad with spending in the past that I don't quite trust us... but we all have to start somewhere.

    Good luck with starting your Dukkan diet!

    I have been watching the James Martin series about hospitals and was impressed at the speed he made homemade soup. Needless to say I made some yesterday in about ten minutes! I made it with one carrot, one parsnip and an apple from my tree. Peeled and chopped the veg-blasted it in a jug with a cover on and a couple of tablespoons of water in the micro for about 3 mins-zapped it in the food processor, added 2 stock cubes and boiling water and boiled it up for about another 5 minutes! Yummy! 4 serving for about 40p.
    Originally posted by angelatgraceland
    Wow...did you add any other veg or just the carrot parsnip and apple? Would an onion replace the apple OK? Thanks for posting this, its made me want to whiz one up right now!
    Last edited by CompBunny; 12-09-2011 at 8:19 PM.
    GC2012: Nov 130.52/125
    GC2011:Sept:215
    Oct:123.98Nov:120Dec:138Feb:94.72

    Quit smoking 10am 17/02/11 - 4315 saved as of Nov'12

    Engaged to my best friend 08/2012

    • Keith
    • By Keith 12th Sep 11, 9:00 PM
    • 2,817 Posts
    • 1,800 Thanks
    Keith
    Hello!

    I'm going to join you all as our grocery shopping is driving me up the wall, we have a 4 month old and the wife is on WW so we are trying to eat healthy. But we spend 20 in the butcher, 25 at the farm shop and end up blowing 50 on the "bits" we need.

    It's got to stop!

    Keith
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 12th Sep 11, 9:31 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    angelatgraceland
    Wow...did you add any other veg or just the carrot parsnip and apple? Would an onion replace the apple OK? Thanks for posting this, its made me want to whiz one up right now![/QUOTE]

    Thats all I used! Plus 2 vegetable stock cubes(value ones) The combinations are up to you entirely. Carrot and onion would be great or tomato and onion(tinned toms even) James was doing cauliflower and lime!!! I think he added onion to that too. also did butternut squash and onion I think. You naturally know what flavours you like together so do experiment! I also made some herby bread as we had no bread left.
    Being a non yeast mix it was easy as well as quick and cheap.
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is 1500 pa 125 calendar month 28.84 pw for 3 adults
  • TrixieB
    I'm having a fuzzy moment and cannot find a menu plans for this week thread so excuse me while I write it down here!

    Tues - proper spaghetti carbonara
    Weds - spicy carrot soup and rolls, pear pudding and custard
    Thurs - mince something
    Fri - more mince something!
    Sat - soup and pud
    Sun - roast chicken
    Trying very hard to be frugal and OS - just plodding on and doing my best!

  • rosieben
    angelatgraceland, I've added your veg soup recipe to the index
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
    • TheThriftyScrumpers
    • By TheThriftyScrumpers 13th Sep 11, 6:02 AM
    • 272 Posts
    • 5,359 Thanks
    TheThriftyScrumpers
    Morning
    mr t gave me another till spit 9 off a 60. Do I go mad and stock up (but risk blowing the budget) or ignore it and buy what I need? Decisions decisions.
    Made some little sponge cakes with ds and dd and added a handful of raisins. Dd loves them. Have to pick out the raisins for ds! Lol, story of my life.

    Hugs to all who need them x
    GC Mar 11 437.08Apr 11 459.26 May 11 485.52 June 11 423.79July 11 409.22 Aug 11 250.10Sept 11 396.14Oct 11 382.37Nov 11 372.55Dec 11 332.29 Jan 12 375.19:Feb 12 349.58Mar 12 279.66Apr 12 249.12May 12 337.66/Jun 12 362.58/Jul 12 317.03/Aug 12 354.02/Sept 439.72/Oct 12 210.16
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

216Posts Today

2,956Users online

Martin's Twitter