How to Save $1000′s a Year

by Nicole on June 23, 2011

Holy humidity! I just got back from a 4.5 mile run (ran 3 miles, walked 1.5) and I was huffing it today. The air was super thick and muggy. I wanted to get out this morning because it’s supposed to storm here later and I didn’t feel like hitting up the treadmill.

When I go to the food store, I tend to get stares…not because I’m so pretty…but because my cart is usually over flowing. I get questions about how many people I’m feeding, the food I’m buying and just general laughs about how I can barely fit anything else in the cart. And remember, all of this is for 2 people..only.

It’s a running joke that not only is my cart packed, but so is my fridge. On Fridays, when I food shop you can barely close it, but come Thursday it’s almost completely empty. We go through A LOT of food in my house and we spend A LOT of money on groceries. So with all that food/produce/money spent how do we still save money?

Well…

I spend anywhere from $115-$150 a week on groceries and that’s not including specialty items bought from Amazon and iHerb.com.

First, we rarely eat out. If we do, it’s 1-2 times a week and we try to not spend a lot of money. (Obviously, this doesn’t include special occasions or dinners out with friends.) So when we spend $150 a week on groceries, that is for 2 people. So say, 7 days in the week, 3 meals a day is 21 meals. Say 20 meals, (for the 1 we do eat out) for 2 people equals 40 meals. $150 divided by 40 meals is $3.75 a meal. Where can you eat an organic, healthy, fresh meal for $3.75?

No where. Which, is why we eat home…A LOT.

We figured this out 3 years ago when we were wondering where the heck all our money was going. We sat down and looked at our bills over the past 2 months and realized we were spending $100 on food for the week and almost $150 a WEEK on going out to eat. That was about 1 nice meal and 2 other meals throughout the week. That is $1000 a MONTH and $12, 000 a YEAR on FOOD! Now, with cutting going out to eat and spending more on groceries, we spend about $175 a week on food, which is $700 a month, which is $8400 a year. A savings of almost $4,000!

I really encourage you to sit down and take a look at your going out to eat budget! You will be BLOWN away by what you find! Pick a meal or two a week and eat in and that money will really add up!

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Christie Inge June 23, 2011 at 7:53 am

I’d be curious to know what your amazon etc spending is. We spend an average of $125 to $150 a week at whole foods, plus are CSA members for meat and order stuff through amazon! I feel like we are spending too much but this post makes me feel a little better. We average around $800 a month of food and we only eat out about once a month!

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Alicia @ AliGirl Cooks June 23, 2011 at 8:07 am

We started eating most of our food at home about a year ago. We rarely buy coffee or lunch plus make dinner 5 nights a week. I did no calculate how much we save but I know it is a ton!

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Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg June 23, 2011 at 8:09 am

Yep– we eat almost ALL of our meals at home too. I’m always self-conscious about our high grocery bill (we probably spend about 115 dollars a week for two of us), but then I have to remember that that is for EVERY single meal that week! Pretty good!

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Dana June 23, 2011 at 10:41 am

During the week we eat most of our meals at home, but we get lazy on the weekends. I’m sure we are spending a ton of extra money on going out and take out Fri-Sun. Your method definitely seems like a good one to eat healthier for less $!

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Rach June 23, 2011 at 10:37 pm

I love to cook so we don’t eat out often anyway, but since we’ve decided to really work on paying off our student debt, we’ve cut back even more. Last year we probably ate out 4 times a month and now we only eat out if we are going out with friends (and we split something) or if we are traveling somewhere. We love to travel so we want to experience the local food while we’re there so that’s our one exception. It’s good, though, because we eat great at home and really very cheaply. :)

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redkathy June 24, 2011 at 5:43 pm

It is amazing what the pen will do for reality!

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MelissaNibbles June 26, 2011 at 6:21 am

I used to never go out to eat and now I go eat to eat A LOT. It’s mostly because I hate sitting home by myself. I need to just get used to living alone. Money’s getting tight!

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