Various peppers and tomatoes at a grocery store.
Money

Optimizing Our Grocery Bill – Part 2

Well, if I had just said “no” to the black bean burgers at Costco, we would have spent less than $100 on groceries this week and met the goal we set in Part 1 of this series.

Here we are, week number 2 of our war on the grocery bill. We took a loss this week, but just barely. For those of you who haven’t read Part 1, my wife and I are working to decrease our grocery budget, which is tends run close to $600 per month.

Week 1

Last week we shopped at Aldi for the first time and supplemented the trip with Walmart and Costco. We spent around $92, sliding in just below our goal of $100. Our trip to Aldi was a positive one. Their selection leaves something to be desired, but we were satisfied overall, especially with their low prices.

Week 1 Recommendations

After week 1, we received a couple of recommendations from readers. Throughout the remainder of this series, I’m opening the floor to suggestions and advice. Do you have any recommendations for lowering our grocery bill based on your own experience? Please share!

Buy Reusable K-Cups

Last week we purchased K-Cups and it was recommended (twice!) that we purchase a reusable K-Cup instead. Therefore, we will be putting this into action immediately. We already purchase large tins and bags of ground coffee, so it seemed like a no-brainer to stop purchasing K-Cups.

Purchase a Deep Freezer / Purchase Meat in Bulk

This is where I need your help. We are considering this recommendation, but we’re unsure if it would be worth it. Medium-sized deep freezers seem to start around $200. Would it be worth $200 to be able to stock up on meat when it goes on sale?

Please feel free to comment with advice below. You can also contact me via the Mailbag on the sidebar or at the bottom of the page if you’re on a cell phone.

Week 2

This week we went back to Aldi and Costco, but managed to avoid going to Walmart for the week. As I said earlier, we just missed on our $100 per week goal. We had a couple unnecessary purchases and ended up spending $112.51 on food items. Here’s the breakdown.

Aldi

2x 1lb Brussel Sprouts – $1.09/lb
5x 1lb Broccoli Florets – $1.19/lb
1lb Roma Tomatoes – $1.29
2x 8oz Bag Flat Leaf Spinach – $1.19/bag
1 Bag Gala Apples – $2.49
3x Avocado – $0.59/ea
1 Jar Dill Pickles – $1.35
3 Pack Green Peppers – $1.99
1 Bag Oranges – $2.49
5.5lb Bananas – $0.44/lb
1 Cucumber – $0.49
1 pint Blueberries – $4.79
1lb Strawberries – $2.69
1Gal Whole Milk – $2.28
1/2 Gal Unsweetened Almond Milk – $1.69
Bag Shredded Cheddar – $1.99
1 loaf Whole Wheat Bread – $1.29
Milled Flax – $2.49
Granola – $2.99
2 5oz Bacon Wrapped Filet Mignon – $4.79 (we couldn’t not try it for that price, I’ll let you know next week if they’re good!)

Costco

2x 3lb Bag Almonds – $12.49/bag (Gina makes homemade almond butter)
10lb Quaker Oats – $8.79
5lb Frozen Green Beans – $6.79
5 Dozen Eggs – $7.99
Black Bean Burgers – $14.59

Conclusion

And there you have it, folks! As I write this, I realize we could have made it under $100 by nixing just a few items. While staying under $100 would have been great, we’re looking to keep our grocery shopping as normal and real as possible, so we’re not calculating every item as we go.

Since next week starts a new budget month, I’ll keep a running total so we can see if we can crush our grocery budget and spend way less than the usual $600.

I look forward to your comments and emails with advice! See you next week!



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