Lately I've been feeling the need to simplify my shopping process for groceries. While I like to serve good, wholesome, home-cooked meals, I don't relish the time it takes to procure all the necessary ingredients. So this month I am trying something new for me and gathered all our groceries for the month last weekend and made a menu from those things and what was in our pantry and freezer. My goal is to stay out of the grocery stores as much as possible, only stopping by the milk store when we use up our supply and popping into grocery stores if there are a couple basic items that are really worth stocking up on. I considered participating in a pantry challenge month, but really we did not have a sufficient stockpile with enough variety for that to be a good idea and I don't want our supplies running too low as we are on the countdown to the birth of our baby.
Grocery Goals for 2012
1. Do 1 major grocery gathering per month, shopping at 2-3 stores, with detailed menu plan, shopping list and cash in hand.
2. Keep the grocery budget to $400 (family of 6, going on 7) including household supplies, toiletries & diapers.
3. Supplement as needed for milk, produce and truly good deals in the times between monthly shopping trips.
4. Be realistic in my expectations of myself. I don't have the time, energy or motivation in this season to be a super couponer. Sometimes I will need to just buy bread at the store and not feel guilty for not making it at home. There will be times we will need to order in or want to eat out. It's all okay as long as we are keeping to our grocery budget.
5. Increase our consumption of fruits and vegetables.
6. Plan to practice hospitality and don't let our budget deter me from that.
So here is our menu for the rest of this month, with the meals we've already eaten crossed out.
Loaded baked potatoes, green smoothies
Chicken caesar salad, oranges
Lasagna (made enough sauce for 3 additional meals), green beans
Broccoli cheddar soup, rolls
Pasta & meat sauce, steamed veggies (x3)
Homemade pizza – pepperoni, ham & pineapple, BBQ chicken (x3)
Chicken black bean burritos (x2)
Whole wheat ham & cheese braid, mixed vegetables
Prime rib (thanks to a gift in the freezer from my in-laws), potatoes, vegetables
French dip sandwiches, baked fries, mixed vegetables
Beef stir fry (broccoli, carrots, onions, red pepper), rice
Chicken noodle soup w/homemade noodles, w.w. rolls
Tangy shredded BBQ chicken sandwiches, baked fries, green beans
Shepherd's pie, smoothies
Colorado white chicken chili, chips
Balsamic chicken, green beans, brown rice
Eggs, bacon, blackberry scones
Chicken, queso & bean rice bowls
Super simple supper: popcorn, apples & oranges, cheese
Lunches - served with fruit, green smoothies and/or vegetables
sandwiches or wraps
macaroni & cheese
snack lunch (any combo of fruit, veg, meat, cheese, popcorn, crackers, etc.)
Oatmeal (x8), oranges, yogurt
Steel cut oats, berries (x3)
Cold cereal, yogurt, pears (x3)
Homemade granola, yogurt (x3)
Yogurt/granola/fruit parfaits (x2)
Toast, smoothies or fruit (x5)
Grocery purchases so far for January = $246.96
Albertson's - $14.00
42 lbs. of oranges
Costco - $125.35 *denotes coupon item
*1 box Huggies (148 diapers, size N & 1, 240 wipes)
*24 ct. Activia yogurt, 4 oz. each
8 - 20 oz. cans Dole Tropical Gold pineapple
1 gal. chocolate milk
2 gallons 1% milk
96 oz. honey
3 lbs. bananas
37 oz. Cheerios
*134 oz. Prego sauce
*2 lbs. Hillshire Farm turkey lunchmeat
40 oz. organic corn tortilla chips
*10 - 260ct. boxes Kleenex
10 lbs. organic carrots
18 ct. eggs
2 - 32 oz. loaves OroWheat bread
5.5 lbs. organic apples
6.6 lbs. organic pasta
King Sooper's - $44.41
3 - 2lb. Sargento cheese cubes
6 - 32 oz. yogurt (5 Dannon Pure, 1 Mountain High)
1 red pepper
2.3 lbs. bananas
12 ct. double-roll Charmin
3 Secret deodorant
3.1 lbs. organic pears
12 ct. bakery cookies - markdown
Sunflower Market - $50.04
1 head romaine
6 - 6 oz. pkgs. blackberries
1.1 lb. steel cut oats
4 - 32 oz. Cascade Fresh whole milk yogurt - so good!
6 - 6 oz. Brown Cow yogurt
3.1 lb. apples
1.8 lb. broccoli
4.5 lb. brown rice
.7 lb. gummi bears - keeping it real here!
4 organic avacados
7 lb. fresh chicken sausage (Baja and Italian varieties)
FarmCrest - $13.16
4 gallons 2% milk
How do you shop and budget for groceries? I'd welcome any time-saving, money-saving, sanity-saving tips!