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    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    • 9,343Posts
    • 17,889Thanks
    • #1
    • 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    4th Jun 11 at 11:19 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the first Grocery Challenge of 2012

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

    For everyones totals, see post #7 on this thread

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Last edited by zippychick; 27-12-2011 at 12:52 PM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 119
  • aberdeensaver
    Chicken & Chorizo Gumbo
    Morning All,

    Big hugs Kylieminoag, I was made redundant twice in 6 months a few years ago. But now settled in a new job and am glad it happened, I will keep my fingers crossed for you that something comes up for you soon.

    Last night I made our household favourite of Chicken & Chorizo Gumbo.


    1 tbsp oil
    200g Chicken chunks (raw or left overs)
    200g sliced chorizo (MrS Basic range one has the least nasties in it!)
    1 onion diced
    1 clove garlic
    2 / 3 peppers
    1 small tin sweetcorn (100g I think drained weight)
    400g tinned chopped tomatoes
    bay leaf


    Fry off the chorizo until the paprika oil runs out, cook the chicken if raw (if not keep it to the side for now)
    Throw in one diced onion and one crushed garlic clove the chopped peppers and the sweetcorn (I normally throw the water in too!) Pop the tinned tomatoes and bay leaves in and bring the mixture to the boil, then turn down and simmer for 5 - 10 minutes.
    If using precooked chicken throw this in now.

    The gumbo takes about 20 minutes in all to simmer.

    Serve in high sided bowls or with some rice.

    This recipe makes enough for 4 - 5 portions depending on if you serve it with anything.

    Hope you all have a good day.
    Jan GC 242.38/250
    Feb GC 147.57 /240
    2012 Clothes Challenge 97.50/500
    Repay 5K in 2012 254.17/5000
    2012 NSD 14/200 (Jan 14)
  • majjak
    Morning all

    Another little bit to add to my total from shopping yesterday. Mainly bits and bobs to see me through the next week on weight watchers but it's fitting in very nicely with mealplans/budgets - I'm hopefull I can do this on a budget !

    No whoopsie shopping for me this week as I've been too poorly to venture out, it certainly makes a difference when you're buying full price items !

    Going to be cooking one of my whoopsied turkeys that I got on xmas eve on Sunday, that should do us a few days and whatever is left will go in the freezer for currys/stir frys/stews.

    I think I'm going to pop to cash and carry when Feb's challenge starts, to get one of their big boxes of chicken. We go through loads and it's a much, much cheaper way of buying it. It's pretty good too ! Don't get the usual pan full of water with them either. I usually pay approx 6 for 4 chicken breasts which works out about 1.50 per breast, cash and carry I can get approx 50 breasts for 35 (0.70 per breast) .

    kylie i hope you're ok, redundancy not a nice thing to go through. DH was made redundant last March and is now in a much better job - I'm a great believer in things happening for a reason so I'm sure something much better is just around the corner for you. Keep positive hunny xxx
    Save 12K challenge 2015 # 173
    • NickJW
    • By NickJW 19th Jan 12, 8:10 AM
    • 678 Posts
    • 13,646 Thanks
    Hi All

    Small spend of 1.64 to report today on some Broccoli and loose potatoes from Mr S.

    I have a couple of sprouting potatoes which desperately need using up, but not enough for tonights meal. The little Mr S near work doesn't do great deals on big bags of potatoes so I thought I would just get what I needed.

    Tonights dinner will be the other pack of sausages I got from M+S last week, with mash and onion gravy - EXACTLY the same meal as last Thursday I have just realized - aren't I inventive! Lol

    Lunch today will be the same as yesterday - the last wrap with the remainder of cooked chicken and salad.

    I need to start looking at the recipe thread for new meal ideas when I get the next shop, since I'm getting a bit bored of my regular after work dinners. I can't do the Mr W shop for this weekend because the delivery slots are all booked up, so I'm going to book it this week due to arrive on Saturday 28th. So next week will just be odd little shops again.
    Grocery Challenge 14 Jan 14 46.05/130

    Grocery Challenge 13 -spent 1453.06
    Grocery Challenge 12 -spent 1565.51

    DFD 1st March 2011
    • Gorgeestwo
    • By Gorgeestwo 19th Jan 12, 8:31 AM
    • 364 Posts
    • 5,889 Thanks
    I haven't had a chance to catch up on this thread yet, but will try to later couple of spends yesterday, one for 9.03 in Co-op and 3.84 in Mr T's, neither of them were essentials, apart from milk in Mr T's, but the other things in Mr T's were whoopsied carrots and bread rolls, also the 7.5kg bag of potatoes on offer for 1.99. In Co-op I got the persil and fairy dishwasher tablets they've got on offer and some whoopsied trifle sponges
    Pretty much at budget now just going to do my meal plan for next week and write my shopping list for the weekend (my last proper shop of the month), going to keep it to a minimum, still hoping I can get it in around 400 and I'll be pleased with that
    Last edited by Gorgeestwo; 19-01-2012 at 8:34 AM.
    Grocery challenge : January 2016 65.86/300
    For 2 adults, 2 children (10 & 9 yrs) 3 cats & 2 dogs.

    • sistercas
    • By sistercas 19th Jan 12, 9:04 AM
    • 4,842 Posts
    • 58,667 Thanks
    off to costco to pick up the chicken and toilet roll offer . i also need sugar , i tend to bulk buy sugar as it works out much cheaper to do that
    Last edited by sistercas; 19-01-2012 at 2:35 PM.
    • JackieO
    • By JackieO 19th Jan 12, 9:21 AM
    • 16,927 Posts
    • 144,929 Thanks
    Lunch today is left over tuna and sweetcorn salad with grated cheese on top and dinner tonight is a couple of sausages, a very small piece of steak and mashed potatoes with peas all from the freezer so NSD for me.I am trying to hang on to every penny this month so it can boost my holiday savings Freezer starting to get a tiny bit of room in it now which is good.Still got stacks of tinned stuff in the cupboards though
    Quot Libros,Quam Breve Tempus.
    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 19th Jan 12, 9:26 AM
    • 5,058 Posts
    • 29,575 Thanks
    morning all nsd here, dinner is mince and taties i really do need to use up whats in my freezer now so i can fit new stuff in next week
    OCT GC 196.12/200
  • rosieben
    ... I need to start looking at the recipe thread for new meal ideas when I get the next shop, since I'm getting a bit bored of my regular after work dinners. ...
    Originally posted by NickJW
    you might find some inspiration on the weekly meal plan threads too

    aberdeensaver, your Chicken & Chorizo Gumbo recipe is in the index
    Last edited by rosieben; 19-01-2012 at 8:53 PM. Reason: deleted link as not working!
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
    • kerri_dfw
    • By kerri_dfw 19th Jan 12, 9:49 AM
    • 4,556 Posts
    • 29,115 Thanks
    Another tin of stockpile beans for lunch today so that's 64p added to this months total.
    I think I'm having tooooo much fibre with all these beans, so only a half tin today and half tin tomorrow. Hopefully will be feeling less full after that although they do say we don't eat enough fibre.
    Diary: Getting back on track for 2013 and beyond
    DEBT FREE 13-10-13
    Beautiful daughter born 11.1.14
    Mortgage: 399,435.91 377218.83
    Deposit loan from Dad: 900010000
    • Gorgeestwo
    • By Gorgeestwo 19th Jan 12, 9:55 AM
    • 364 Posts
    • 5,889 Thanks
    Have ordered the cats food, added to total, meal plan done and shopping list done, I can't believe how much I'm enjoying being organised and seeing how much we're saving
    Grocery challenge : January 2016 65.86/300
    For 2 adults, 2 children (10 & 9 yrs) 3 cats & 2 dogs.

    • tessie bear
    • By tessie bear 19th Jan 12, 10:44 AM
    • 4,369 Posts
    • 30,042 Thanks
    tessie bear
    hi....just been out to the coop and spent 4 on some nice fruit and hm mince pie for tea and yogurt with kiwi and raspberries (both reduced in the coop)....also got some full fat milk reduced to make a rice pudding

    i have got a chicken defrosting so need to think of something nice to do with that

    have a nice day tess
    onwards and upwards
    • raphanius
    • By raphanius 19th Jan 12, 11:48 AM
    • 1,269 Posts
    • 6,634 Thanks
    totally messed up my meal plan this week. was supposed to split a huge lasagne into 3 days worth but came in a bit tipsy from work last night (i work in a pub) and ate a huge portion cold with a glass of wine

    sent OH out for chips for lunch today (have got rid of the fryer) and had to get milk again so 3.80 to declare.
    Wins: 2008: 606.10 2009: 806.24 2010: 713.47 2011: 328.32

    • bunbun2
    • By bunbun2 19th Jan 12, 12:13 PM
    • 3,503 Posts
    • 28,838 Thanks
    I have just made the cheese, tomato and pesto muffins. of course I had to taste one and they are absolutely gorgeous!

    I am loving this thread and it has given me so many great ideas and recipes. everyone seems so friendly and helpful too. I am looking forward to joining in in February.
    saving for ds2's summer international scout camp - 200
    60 deposit paid 100 paid 40 paid
    • jollymummy
    • By jollymummy 19th Jan 12, 12:17 PM
    • 946 Posts
    • 4,072 Thanks
    Afternoon all
    We've just been to A!di and Home Bargains and spent 64.65, checked this in Mysupermarket and at Mr T's would have cost us 92.59 - result !!
    Anyhoo added this to the two other mini shopping trips this week and updated my total accordingly.
    I now have another 17.05 to transfer to m virtual pot for Christmas

    NSD 3/366
    4/366. 2016 Decluttering challenge
  • sonastin
    spent 20.60 in A!di last night so total is up to 183.39 / 200 for the month. 16.61 to last me 11 days? I reckon it is do-able as we've got most things in stock now. Might need to top up on a few veggies next weekend for the last few days of the month but I'm hoping I can make what we've got in last. I've got a sort of meal plan in my head but the detail keeps disappearing - its a bit like when you can see a poster on a wall but its just a bit too far away to read it properly! I should really write down the meal plan and check where we're up to but I just know if I commit it to paper, OH will make me change it. At least if I keep it vague and out of his way, I can adapt without feeling too bad about veering off track!
    • sproggi
    • By sproggi 19th Jan 12, 12:21 PM
    • 1,517 Posts
    • 6,376 Thanks
    you might find some inspiration on the weekly meal plan thread too, here's a list of threads to check out, that works!
    Originally posted by rosieben
    Sorry Rosieben, link does not seem to work

    Not updated since Monday, so:
    Tuesday spent 3.93
    Wednesday NSD
    Thursday spent 23.11 which included a 5kg bag of sugar @3.99 that should last forever! and bottled drinks for DD1 as she is a horror for not drinking enough, she just doesn't think about it unless it is in front of her.
    I also got some chicken fillet for fajita's tonight, I used a whole chicken last time I made them, but struggled to get enough meat off of it. Never bought fillets before and at 4 (on offer) for 500gms, I know why

    Collected my new glasses today and boy are they going to take some getting used to, they look fine on, but very unsettling to look through even though the prescription is only slightly different to my old one. Maybe it is because I am used to my old glasses being scratched to pieces and so bent up that I was looking through the wrong bit of the lense (according to woman in opticians)

    While I was in town, thought I would see what Bo*ts had in their 75%off sale, was hoping to treat myself to a toiletries set of some description seeing as no-one ever gets me one (maybe they think I smell sweet enough ), but all they had was 2 x some celeb set and 3 x times some children make-up set, so nothing spent there.
    I was very proud of myself though, right next door to Bo*ts is a bakers and the smell from there was sooooo tempting, but knowing that I would have to confess on here, I held my breath and walked straight past, got home and settled for 2 mulla* light yoghurts and a banana

    'We can get over being poor, but it takes longer to get over being ignorant'
    Jane Sequichie Hifler
    Beware of little expenses.A small leak will sink a great ship
    Benjamin Franklin
    • janiepopps
    • By janiepopps 19th Jan 12, 12:33 PM
    • 69 Posts
    • 1,335 Thanks
    Wish I had your self control Sproggi, I left work and thought I'd treat myself to a Belgian bun. You can't even see the bready bit cos of all the icing on it... drool... slurp...
    So that cost me 95p & 2.50 in Lid1 on bananas and 24 bags of crisps for packed lunches. Today is my weekly shop day but I'm not doing it this week. Let's see if we starve...!
    Jan '12 GC; 74.66/100
    2 saver club member #107
    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 19th Jan 12, 1:01 PM
    • 5,058 Posts
    • 29,575 Thanks
    i also caved into buns and had an cream finger yesterday, ds3 had a lemon cupcake they w're a nice treat for us as we rarely get anything nice, the bigger kids get lovely puddings with there school dinners, and hubbys mum feeds him lunch and he regularly gets nice m7s sandwichs and buns and far too many chippys, i think it's good to give in sometimes
    OCT GC 196.12/200
    • dumpling
    • By dumpling 19th Jan 12, 1:36 PM
    • 1,758 Posts
    • 24,318 Thanks
    Hi, I spent another 12 in Mr T's today on some potatoes, chicken and salad bits for lunch. They were selling packs of bacon reduced to 75p too so I bought a couple to put in the freezer for later on this month. I wish I had picked up a few more now but I had to carry the shopping back to the bus stop and I couldn't manage it!

    I have a delivery booked for tomorrow which works out at about 50 so I am well on track to come in under budget this month. We have been eating out of the freezer to use up the stocks so I can defrost it. I'm ashamed to admit that we have had the freezer for three years and this will be the first time I have defrosted it lol!

  • Long tall sally
    Not a great day spending wise! Some days I manage to be good & then others, like today, I just can't be bothered & buy things that we really don't need & which of course, have put me over target. Hey ho, too tired to be bothered about it today.
    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
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