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How to feed a family of 4 on $50 - $75 per week

Posted by on Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:16 PM
  • 42 Replies
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Hey there!

I have a question for you ladies on how to shave off some $ from my grocery bill. Currently, I spend anywhere between $100 - $125 per week on groceries (this also includes toilet paper, paper towels, and other non food items when they are needed. ) but most of what i'm spending is on food.

I have  a 4 year old son, a 1 year old daugther (who eats like crazy! LOL) and a husband.  I don't really buy any convienience foods  except for some chips and things for my hubby's lunches but I buy those in bulk about once a month,.  We use up our left overs, we do breakfast nights, we do grilled cheeses etc when we are looking for a cheap meal.  I just don't know what i am doing wrong. I see there are people on Cafemom that spend $50, $60, or $75 per week on a family of 4, 5,6 or even 7!

How do you ladies do it! Any tips are very much appreciated!



by on Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:16 PM
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by on Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:34 PM

Ask Michiganmom. She is a the queen of grocery shopping on a budget. She has like seven people in her family, I believe and only spend a few hundred dollars a month (something like that).

We're a family like you except our youngest is breastfed.. And I spend about the same as you.

by on Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:38 PM
use coupons, go to Walmart and add match. Make things from scratch (like Mac n cheese and stuff like that). We're trying to cut back our bills too and these are the things I'm trying
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by on Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:39 PM
Oh & check out the site she is very helpful with tips on saving money
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by Rhonda on Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:45 PM

First and foremost, I plan my meals ahead of time.  I inventory what's on hand in my freezers and fridge and pantry, and see what I can make with those ingredients.  Then I'll check the sales flyer and see if there are any loss leaders I can use with my ingredients to make more meals.

I cook from scratch, with the exception of condiments and canned soups for recipes.  I bake our own breads, buns, rolls, tortillas, bagels, make our own salad dressings and seasoning mixes, and even make pasta.  I'm not superwoman and I don't like cooking for hours, so I've found recipes that make up quickly.

Meat is not usually the centerpiece of our meals.  I prefer to use it as a complement in casseroles, skillet meals, and stir fry.  I can stretch 2-3 chicken breasts to feed 7 people.  Most people mistakenly think that you have to have more protein, but 3 oz. is all that's needed per person, and you can use even less meat if you add other sources of protein to meals.

I don't have the advantage that some do of having stores that offer double or triple coupons or great deals, so I get my savings by shopping at a discount/bulk grocer and at Save A Lot. 

I also grow a garden in the summer and preserve what I can.  Every little bit helps!

by Rhonda on Jan. 25, 2011 at 10:53 PM

Here's a sample of what we've had to eat so far this month, and I've spent less than $200, for a family of 4 adults, a teen boy, and 2 tweens:

Hawaiian chicken over rice with steamed green beans

spaghetti, homemade garlic bread, tossed salad

Roast chicken, squash, corn

hamburger goulash with tossed salad

sloppy joes on homemade buns, steamed veggies & beet pickles

broccoli ham & cheese soup, muffins

chicken al fredo with homemade pasta, green beans

chicken broccoli dijon stir fry over rice

roast beef, potatoes, carrots, birthday turtle cheesecake

minestrone, homemade Italian bread

wet burritos, corn & tomato salad

scalloped potatoes & ham, steamed veggies

chili with corn chips, salad

hot German potato salad with bratwurst and green beans

lasagna, homemade garlic bread, tossed salad

and more!

by on Jan. 26, 2011 at 12:31 AM

My big think is spaghetti. So cheap and yummmmmy.

by on Jan. 26, 2011 at 8:07 AM

Definitely use michiganmom116's guidelines!!!  I meal plan like a demon and match coupons to what's on sale at the local stores (I have 3 chains near me, and a WalMart super store that I rarely use for food).  I plan leftover nights as well as breakfast for dinner on some nights.

I currently don't have to purchase any major groceries until close to the end of February......I'd get more groceries, but I have no room, so I'll just write down what's on sale to track the good sales for future use.

by on Jan. 26, 2011 at 8:14 AM

I shop at WalMart (it's the cheapest in our area), clip coupons, buy generics when they are cheaper, make a few meatless meals during the week, buy ground turkey and other meats in bulk when it's on sale and freeze it, make cheap meals that feed a crowd like spaghetti, soups, and stews.  I make my laundry detergent so that has cut down on my weekly grocery budget and I buy liquid fabric softener but I water it down before using (it still makes the clothes smell great but lasts much longer).  I make a menu for each week and shop based on that menu. 

by on Jan. 26, 2011 at 8:28 AM
I'm trying to learn as well here's a bump
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by Member on Jan. 26, 2011 at 8:38 AM

I use the sale ads to make a menu each week and try to match coupons to the sales to cut more.   I've also started trying to pay attention to the sales.... Milk here at Kroger seems to be on sale for the half gallons every couple weeks - so if I buy more then I can skip the more expensive week.... 

I'm still working on how to cut back though..... :)

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