Grocery Spending 2023

A few people have expressed interest in continuing Snackuary through the year, myself included! I won’t be re-posting the rules and regulations so feel free to continue with the challenge as is or simply post your spending whenever it passes through your sieve-like mind. I am clearly talking about myself in that last bit.

Let’s share our spends! If you have a specific goal you’re aiming to meet feel free to share it, if you want to pop in occasionally that’s ok too.

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Yay! Thanks @anomalily !

I’m looking to track my grocery spending more carefully this year due to the rising prices as well as some very lavish spending on fun upcoming travel things. I’ll be tracking food spending only but not household items. I’m hoping to continue my trend of high-low, so one week higher and then the next week lower. This helps me stock up on things as needed and then immediately compensate. A low week is around $50 or less and a high week is anywhere from $100-$200, depending on what I need (stocking up on spices, for example, is very pricy). I’ve been on track all January so far! Hopefully posting here will keep me on track for the year.

One thing we’ve done so far is eliminate eggs for breakfast. DH is doing yogurt and nuts, which is great because we had a lot of nuts that need to be eaten and yogurt is still cheap in our area. I’m not a big American-breakfast person anyway so I’ve been eating whatever, polenta, sweet potatoes and okra and rice, stir fry, whatevs! I’m still using eggs for making bread and pasta tho.

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I’m in! I’m definitely keeping my Snackuary goals:

This Snackuary has been wayyyy more successful than past Snackuarys in terms of adherence but still way more expensive than it should be, so I’d like to figure out how to transfer these new behaviors into saving more money. Possibly problem areas (would love if anyone else has other ideas too!):

  1. Simply overbuying. Part of this is impulse purchases, part is probably buying too many “treats” (may need to unpack this more), part is ???
  2. Overly complex meals/too much variety of ingredients. All those bits add up.
  3. Buying (expensive) specialty ingredients.

And many more, probably…

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I’m following. I need to keep working on maintaining my freezer inventory and eating what we have and wasting no produce (within my control of course). Meal planning around husbands insanely unpredictable work, etc. I may not post a ton given my lower phone use now, but will likely dip in for some inspiration and accountability (and share our shockingly high grocery numbers if anyone ever needs to feel better about themselves).

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Need to keep January going for a bit to finish getting rid of the random stuff I stocked up on for covid (and still have in the pantry/freezer). Not sure I’ll go the whole year, but at least another month or two.

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I dunno man. Groceries and having somewhat nice food is one of the few things I got left. I’m vaguely aware everything is like twice the price of a year.

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I feel like this too.

But also when I track my groceries I seem to also plan food better, try more new things, and throw out less. So maybe I’ll do this for that reason.

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Oh yeah. It’s an area we suck. The second and third visit to Woolies is what gets ya.

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This is definitely a problem area for me too! I don’t want to stop cooking a wide variety of cuisines so I’m hoping better planning can help? Or maybe balancing more simple meals with my specialty spending, so like if I know I need to stock up on specialty stuff maybe I have simpler meals for a week or two prior? IDK.

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Hahahhaa it me
:bowl_with_spoon:
All

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Here! We blew through January’s budget… and ate lots of beans and rice. Tonight, for variety, fries and leftovers

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We have been spending a lot of money and i would like to spend the same amount every month even if i can’t make it go downwards right now.

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Ooh the week or two of simpler meals is an interesting idea! I’ll have to try that.

And yeah I’m definitely hoping better planning will help. Long-winded thought process: I’m thinking about a random reddit comment I read somewhere that said they pick a base (like rice), rather than having a million different options and kinds of rice, pasta, quinoa, etc all at once.

So I’m thinking of applying that but on a rotating basis for specialty ingredients – like try to get only one expensive specialty ingredient at a time, but use it up consistently, then I can rotate to the next thing. If any of that makes sense – I just woke up lol.

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I have a bad habit of buying expensive things for a treat and letting them languish, which leads to diminishing quality and thus enjoyment over time

So my goal will be both a spending level and enjoyment/appreciation of the special stuff. (fancy canned tuna, you’re on the list!)

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What kinds of specialty items are wreaking havoc on spending? Maybe we can brainstorm.

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It’s not so much that there’s a problem with the types of specialty items I buy, but the variety. I don’t just have rice in my pantry; I have sushi rice, arborio rice, jasmine, basmati, brown, and forbidden. It’s the same with everything! :laughing: I have like 4 types of dried mushrooms and the same for dried peppers. Spices are really expensive too, and I like to have a really wide variety!

The way to make things much cheaper would be to stick to one or two cuisines and only stock things to make those, like if I only cooked Mediterranean food I wouldn’t need so much…but I don’t want to! Haha :laughing: and they aren’t really wreaking havoc, per se, but my other areas of spending on food are very frugal. I just want to keep an eye on things. When I spend a lot at once it’s usually because I’m restocking things for a specific cuisine, which I consider specialty shopping, versus Aldi and produce store basics, etc.

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I have this problem and I haven’t figured out a solution either. I know it definitely can’t be cutting back on the different varieties of chili pastes I own, though…there has to be a better way! :joy:

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:joy: So I think that most of those things aren’t too much to stock unless you are just expanding your repetoire or everything runs low at once.

For me, time and energy limit how often we go to a second or third store - and I don’t add in new staples too often (I added arborio rice and 2 spices this fall (five spice and white pepper)).

I think at a certain point we can’t optimize more unless we are at survival level.

The other thing I do is ingredients like arborio or tofu are more expensive than my other staples, so meals based around them are once a week-ish.

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I think i will copy the grocery store magazine and see how much some of our regular meals cost “per serve” and see if they’re more or less than $5. I will include takeaway and frozen food type meals in this.

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Maybe it’s not as much money as I’m imagining? I feel like spices and oils and vinegars cost a lot! Tracking will help me know for sure and space things out if I need to.

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