Feed a Family of Four on $90 Weekly

Feed a Family of Four on $90 Weekly

Feed a Family of Four on $90 Weekly

Feed a Family of Four on $90 Weekly? Ok, let’s do a little math: Assuming 3 meals a day, a family of four eats 21 meals a week.   That means that with a budget of $90 weekly, I have slightly over a dollar to spend per meal per person.  My sister and I laugh at the magazine plans with servings that cost “only” $2.30 a serving.  We can cut that in half.

I confess that we are blessed to have an extremely affordable grocery store about a half hour away—coupons don’t help me because their deals are almost always better, but I’m not complaining.  Shopping the sales, of course, is always my approach.  We make things from scratch most of the time.  Also, I have a preschooler and toddler, so presumably they don’t eat as much as adults, although sometimes I’m not so sure.

A family of Four can Eat Well on $90 Weekly

I shop bi-weekly, so my totals are for two weeks: Feed a Family of Four on $90 Weekly

Meat:

Beef roast, a pork roast, two chickens, chicken nuggets  [periodically, hot dogs or ham or hamburg.]  $40-45.

Vegetables:

Frozen peas, edamame, broccoli, green beans; fresh onions, carrots, cabbage, lettuce, turnip, etc., to total about $20-25  [Now that summer approaches, we will soon be able to supplement this with our own veggies.]

Fruit:

Frozen blueberries, canned pineapple and mandarin oranges, natural applesauce, dried fruit, fresh apples, kiwi, melon, usually a splurge like berries or grapes, to total about $20-25 total.  I try to eat the fresh produce the first week and the canned, frozen or dried the second to prevent waste from spoilage.

Dairy:

Milk, yogurt, cheese, butter about $45-50 [We buy expensive raw milk and hit the other two pretty hard with my husband’s low-carb, high fat diet and our general love of cheese.]

Everything else:

peanuts, almonds, rice cakes, eggs [lots], toilet paper, paper towels, peanut butter [lots], condiments, diapers [we use cloth except for at night], oatmeal, pasta, rice, etc—about $40-55

I don’t buy everything every week, and of course we change it up now and then or splurge on something or go out to eat.  However, here is an example of a menu for the week:

Breakfast: 

Eggs, cheese, fruit, oatmeal with nuts and fruit, yogurt, pancakes, etc.  The kids enjoy eating out of muffin tins, so I aim loosely for two muffin wells each of protein, grains, and fruits/vegetables.

Lunch:

Leftovers, salads, mac and cheese [I make it myself—cheaper and tastier than the mix], fruit, rice cakes, chicken nuggets, mini calzones or pizzas, nuts, vegetables

Supper:

This is the tricky bit.  We eat at my mom’s at least once a week, and Sunday I don’t cook if I can help it, so it’s more like a lunch meal.  Let’s assume we eat 10-12 suppers at home; each chunk of meat is good for 2-3 meals:

Roast Chicken with vegetables

Chicken quesadillas with low carb tortillas

Roast beef and a vegetable

Roast Beef Hash with roasted root vegetables

Crock pot pork and a vegetable

Stir-fry with leftover pork , vegetables, and rice on the side

Roast Chicken with vegetables

Chicken Enchiladas

Chicken Soup or Chicken and Dumplings or Chicken pot pie, made with bone stock from the leftover chicken.

Hot dogs and baked beans [sometimes I make my own; it’s a New England tradition.]

It was NOT easy:

It wasn’t easy, but I am finally getting close to satisfied when I leave the grocery store.  The hardest thing has been making a low-budget work for my husband’s low carb diet, but that’s where all those eggs and jars of peanut butter come in.  I’ve figured out which fresh produce is most affordable and which nutritious foods are the most filling.  I make generous use of my slow-cooker.  I pay in cash—this has helped me a ton—and I now realize how much a handful of little unnecessary splurges can blow the budget.  Whatever they were, I don’t even miss them.  😀

Tell us what you think of Feed a Family of Four on $90 [USD] Weekly?  What are your best tips for saving money at the grocery store?

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