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2014 Grocery Challenge

The 2014 grocery challenge

With a budget of £4,000 for everything for the year, about a quarter of it gets allocated to groceries, a quarter to heat/light/energy and half to cover everything else, so here's my plan for 2014

I'm still sticking with my £1 per person per year plus an allowance for visitors, toiletries, laundry and cleaning products.

Down to 2 in this household, so that's 2 x 365 days = £730 for food right away, plus I normally have family and friends to stay at least 3 times a year, so an extra £70 being allowed for this. That leaves me £175 for toiletries, cleaning products and any other extras for special occasion meals such as New Year and Christmas. So, my personal grocery challenge is to keep it within £975.

Who is taking part and what's your budget?

I haven't listed individual budget amounts in the challenger list as all our households are different sizes with different dietary requirements.

Cheap and Cheerful
New start

I'm going to aim for £60 per week to feed a family of 4.This breaks down to £2.14 per person per day!

Please add me to the list.  Not sure about how much it will be at the moment.  I will work out some figures and then put them on here.  

I have decided that I am not going to try and go as low as last year.

I really want to pay more off my mortgage before interest rates start to go up.

I have decided that takeaways (already quite rare) will not be happening apart from the odd packet of chips at the seaside.

I will be sticking with my budget of £200 per month with any leftovers going into the savings pot.  I know it seems a huge amount for 2 people but it works well for us, it also gives room for improvement and stockpiling.

Hello, this newbie would like to go for £25 per week.  This is for one human, and includes cat food and litter for three cats.  They need a litter tray because houses are still being built around mine, so until the development is finished (sometime in late 2014), they are house cats.

Year total - £1,300.

I would like to do this for $150 per fortnight. This is for 2 adults and 3 cats. At the moment we use 1 large 15 kilo bag of litter each fortnight, but when we move next year this will increase as the cats will have to be in an enclosure instead of 2 of them free ranging during the day. I also don't know about butchers and greengrocers in the area we will be moving to, also we may have to rent for a few months in between selling our house and buying the new one.

Welcome Taran and Maggie, hope you have fun with this frugal food challenge in 2014.

Please add me to the list we will stick to same budget of £200 a month but the surplus goes into the holiday fund(a special year) we usually spend £100 a month with bulk buying but hoping to lower this for 2014.

January shopping

I have now done the bulk of my January shopping by way of a freezer order and a rare trip to the nearest Co-op, where I was quite stunned by the prices!  £5 for own brand cheese, £1.25 for own brand flour and £1.45 for own brand 2L carton of milk?! For newcomers to the challenge, this is my nearest small supermarket and it's just over 20 miles round trip, there aren't any buses here, I don't have a car and, basically, I don't get there very often!

I've spent the last of my 2013 money on milk, including 5 litres of UHT, banans and some fresh veg, plus a couple of marked down bargains from Co-op, and stocked up on things like flour, cheese, frozen veggies for next year.

This brings my 2013 balance to zero and my 2014 budget to £886.08
New start

Please add me to the list.
I have been though my bills and I'm sure I can do £30 a week, but I'm going to up it to £50 and save what I can.
This will mean if I'm sick we can cope with meals that are ready made or a take away.
I can't wait for this to start and see how little I can live on   .

Please add me to the list. My budget is £70 a week for a family of 5 plus 2 cats.

This is £3640 a year which seems like an enormous amount of money?



Add me to this challenge. I need to work out the budget for 1 adult, 1 teenage girl, 3 cats 1 of which does not like cat biscuits and is a house cat and 2 dogs 1 little house dog and 1 big collie dog that loves food.  

Stock piling of basics is good at the moment as my dad brought me round my Xmas pressie of beans, tinned toms, pasta, rice, noodles, cup a soup, dish liquid, dish washer tablets and 480 tea bags.

I do need to check my herbs and spices for gaps and exp dates. And see what to keep and get rid of in fridge and freezer ready for new year.  Update and restock the baking cupboard so ready for bread making and remind myself to slice the bread before freezing it so it doesn't all have to come out in a block.

Welcome CliffH and Picard

Cliff, that isn't really much at all when you look at it as less than £2 per person per day and whatever balance leftover to keep 2 cats. I'd call that very fair indeed.

Picard, great pressie from your dad!

I'm aiming for £65.00 per month, for two adults and two cats.  It isn't a lot but I have a huge stockpile that needs using up and my son gets highly subsidised meals at work.  I want to grow more of my own food this year too.

This will include cleaning materials too but as I only use soap, soda crystals, bicarbonate of soda and vinegar it shouldn't be too much of a  drain...(being a bit of a slut on the housework front does help!)

The budget may have to go up once the stockpile's gone but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it!

So, total food budget for the coming year, (starting 22nd December) is £800. (I know it should be £780 but 800 seems a nice round number! ).

I've dug out an old A4 hardback lined note pad and will be recording my household expenses.

I would like to join in please this year.
We are having a big saving year to put a decent deposit down for our first home. The aim is to live on £50 a week after bills, that includes cleaning, clothing, entertainment... the works
So I will say my budget is £30 a week for 2 adults, 1 child and a toddler.
I am hoping to grow some food for the first time this year and also to forage wild foods more. I am also hoping to improve my preserving skills so I can buy reductions in bulk and take full advantage of gluts throughout the year.

x x x

I'd like to join too NYK.  Not sure of my numbers yet but I'll have them ready for the start of the year.  Now I've got a second fridge/freezer I can build up my stores again.

Whilst saving money on meals is fab I really need to make an effort to plan nutritious healthy meals that don't bust the bank!!  

I would like to join please

budget will be 150 a month this to feed 2
adults 1 child a greedy guinea pig ad also somevfreezer meals for a relitive

I would like to join please

budget will be 150 a month this to feed 2
adults 1 child a greedy guinea pig ad also somevfreezer meals for a relitive

Count me in too budget will be the same as for 2013, £120 a month for 2 adults. any surplus to go into the savings tin for our holiday next year. I did try udring this year to shop every 2 weeks and divide the HK into 2 but it just did not work, so will go back to £120 a month and draw the cash when I go shopping with my emnu list at the end of each month.

I need another few months to suss out the rest as we have not had a full winter in this house. Although the cost of heating is going ok we have not had any really cold weather yet.
Cheap and Cheerful

Frugaldom, I was appalled when I read the prices you have to pay at your local co-op. Do none of the major supermarkets deliver to your area ?  I am full of admiration for the way you cope.

I will be taking part in this challenge and will post the details when I've worked them out.


Cheap and Cheerful, we don't have any supermarkets within a 20 mile radius of here, so no deliveries. Co-op here has two aisles - one up one side of shop, the other down the other to check-out. Our village store is being changed to a Spar, so that might help a bit, but it's still a 7-mile cycle ride there and back again.

In all honesty, if it wasn't for Internet, I doubt many frugal ruralites would even be aware that people could buy food for pennies, so I'm more appalled by the disgusting amount of food that gets wasted, despite reading/hearing that so many are allegedly struggling to feed their families. I'll bet there would be far less food waste if supermarket shoppers had to pay village store prices for a month.

I would like to join.

The budget will be € 200.- per month. So depending on the month this will be for 4 weeks or maximum 5,5 weeks.

Our household consists of DH and myself. We do have 2 cats, but I don't include their costs in the groceries. We bulk buy their food etc.

I am looking forward to read how everyone is doing. Despite being from so many different places, we can always learn from each other.

Count me in , this is the only challenge i will be reporting on next year. we will be still frugal living but i find it hard to keep up with the record keeping and reporting  so choosing to focus on the budget that's the most changeable. Aiming for £2080 for the year. That's for 4 adults and 12yo with hollow legs! Although 2 adults will be leaving part way through the year if probate dept ever get their finger out

Me too please. £50 pw - three of us one of whom is a 15yo hollow legged lad and a cat. This amount includes all cleaning materials aswell as food. I tracked it at this level throughout 2013 and we came in under every month bar one- leftover money paid for Mr GBT's new camera and paraphenalia.


Please add me to the list. I'd like to stick to £40 a week for 2 adults and a dog. Budget to cover all cleaning products and dog food. I will be tracking what I spend really carefully as well.

Food challenge

2014 is definitely going to be the year I get really good at being frugal. I'm setting a budget of £1,300 for a year of groceries. That's £25 a week. I'm looking forward to the challenge!

Think I'll be about €90 a week - about £75 - that's for 5 adults, 4 cats and a dog, plus having family/friends about 3 or 4 times a year a week at a time.  That is food, toiletries, cleaning, animals bits, birthday food & barbies, the odd bottle of red wine, the lot.

Exclusions are garden, car, household replacements (usually 2nd hand anyway), clothes (ditto).  Still to work out this budget.

I think we can live on £50 a week.  That's me and a hollow legged teenager and 2 large dogs plus weekend meals with OH and his equally hollow legged pre teen.

So that's all food, toiletries and cleaning stuff.  Totally doable but I have to be organised and vigilant about portion control (good for weight loss too!!)

I'm not including the teenager's lunch as he gets money to buy his during term time.  This is a bit of an expensive luxury but due to peer pressure and a lack of facilities in school for a packed lunch I'm just accepting it.  I'm choosing to live frugally, he doesn't have a choice but he sees how much buying lunch costs compared to making mine at home.  So I hope my example rubs off him for future reference  

how do

This is the area I want to concentrate on to save money and be more aware of where the money goes.

I thought I was doing pretty good until about October when I went right off course.

I will set the target for £60pw for 3 adults, no pets - cos I'm allergic!

I know its a bit high but I take in exchange students and have to give them a few treats, not many, so will set the target for £60.

I intend to grow more salad stuff this year and have a go at sprouting - how hard can it be?

This will include all food, personal care and household.  I will have to purchase some seeds, not many, as I have some from last year to use up.  I already have my sprouting beans/seeds so no purchase there.

Saw this on FB and thought it would be suited for this thread


May I join too?  I would have no idea what limit to set.  Sometimes we spend little on groceries and other times a lot.  I know it is around $200 a week for five adults and one spoilt kitty.  I truly would like to eat the stockpile down and plan more carefully.  With dementia ruling the roost it is difficult.  For instance I planned our main meal to be steak burgers….mum had other ideas.  Hopefully the steak burgers will happen tonight. I try to limit my protein costs per meal to $1 each.  It is becoming more of a challenge.  

Having rambled on I guess my initial goal has three aims.

1.  To record all expenditure to see what is bought and how much is spent.

2.  To plan main meals so there is great nutrition and easy to use left overs if there are left overs.

3.  To get a handle on all the food stored around the home and start to use it.  Out of date food is waste pure and simple.

Goals set for January.

January grocery challenge is all sorted. Money we got for Christmas is transfered from current account to savings as nowt we need or want! So the cash has been split into envelopes of£40 per week for housekeeping, see how we go!

So the first day of the year already. As I will be sticking to the budget of € 200.- from payday to payday I am already well over budget so far. We got paid on the 19-12-2013. Normally we get our pay around the 25th. The total now stands at € 142.45. But this included birthday shopping for yesterday. But I have a lot of leftover sweets, wine (I got 4 bottles of red wine gifts from friends), cookies, crisps, salmon and camembert.

Tomorrow I will do the shopping. But as our Lidl will be closing for 2 weeks starting on the 4th I will stock up a bit. And will add the fresh stuff at the green grocers and the butcher. But most likely it will make the bill go up.

I am definately looking forward tp how this goes this year. I am definately looking forward to it. So happy new year everyone!

Would like to join in with this please. I aim to spend £50 per week for 2 adiults and one dog with any extra put into savings.

Shaz - whoever wrote that one hasn't met me! ROFL

Just off to add in all the names and check I haven't missed anyone.

Start of my challenge

I have a budget of £975 for 2014, equating to a basic £1 per person per day for 2 (£730) plus £245 to cover everything else within the laundry, cleaning and toiletries categories.

Freezer order and a few little bits and pieces came to £88.92 in total, so I have £886.08 and quite a good stock of food etc. in the cupboards.

I have decided on £35 a week (£1,820 pa).  My family is one adult, 11 year old boy, 6 year old boy, three cats and one chicken.

This should cover food, cleaning products and pet food.

I still have lots of food in stores including Christmas chocolate.  I think we need to have risotto every other day!  

I also have lots of shampoo, soap etc.  Maybe need to buy toothpaste.

My children get free meals at school but most days I still cook a hot meal for them.

I do have access to lots of reduced food and have all the major supermarkets nearby and three within walking distance.

Shaz - that made me laugh, how true

Poppycat - I forgot about the chickens.  I think I can squeeze the 6 chooks in the food budget - we buy their corn from the commune very cheaply, and they have scraps, peelings etc


Although we've not studied the accounts yet, we're going for it st £30 per week for 3 adults.

Works out at £1560 for the year. Sounds loads when you say it out loud but it will not be long in disappearing.

Need to be very strict on taking lunches to work, especially now I have the temptation of a staff canteen!

Teenager has her student loan so uses that for lunches etc while at college, less for us to pay!

Not bought anything this year!

I have   friends coming over for lunch doing a make your own pizza party for 9 people  to use up all those odds and sods and no one will know !

At present I am working hard on preserving the few lettuce and herb plants I have.  The present heat wave is taking a toll.  I can spend a fortune on herbs so this is an essential for me.  Yesterday I was given two small food boxes and I am going to incorporate them into our meals.  I also found some meat at half price….so five meals or so for less than $12 for the protein.

Half price meat is always a welcome addition to the budget, Suzan

I have only spent £1.75, on some satsumas last week, of this months food budget but will need some more fruit and veg when I go into L'ton next week.

I cooked a yellow sticker chicken on Wednesday. Only a small one but it did my elder OOD and I a roast dinner on Wednesday, chicken risotto for the two of us last night, will do a chicken and leek pie for the two of us,(with some left over for the freezer if I can get to it before he does! ), and a small amount of tiny pieces left to go into a chicken stew. As I was able to take a roast lunch to work yesterday and have risotto for today's lunch - that's 12 meals out of one, £1.40 bargain bird!

Catsister that is one stretched chicken.  I have a friend who does not believe how far I can stretch a chicken…..She bought two for 7 and two days later the first was finished.  But you win by a mile.  I plan to stretch each meal to feed five but I doubt I could perform your miracle.

Thats great stretchy chicken Catsister.

I went to sainsbobs yesterday for my weekly shop and it came to £33.  Very pleased with that, no meat purchased as per one of  my challenges which is to eat up all meat in the freezer.  Will only need to buy nanas and milk in the week.
Cheap and Cheerful

I have finally decided what I am doing for this challenge. I saved £200 in the 100 day challenge and I am going to use this for groceries. The idea being to see how long I can make it last. I should only need to top up fresh food for quite a while as I have loads in store.

I will not be including cat food in this as I wont/cant economise on this he is an old fella and a bit of a fussy eater. Its not his idea to economise so I don't feel I can inflict cheap cat food on him  Anyway it gives him bad wind and I don't want to inflict that on either of us.  

Zero spend so far this month, but that could change today as we seem to have a break in the nasty weather so I will use the opportunity to get out.

No spends still but running low on fresh things hoping I can last until Monday as DS is back at school then and I can pick things up in the co-op next to the school and not have to make a special journey. we are using up the free uht milk sticks from an AF order for tea and coffee.

Have a pot ful of fridge bottom soup in the slowcooker ....minestrone-ish
New start

I need to go and get some fresh bit.
Have had a list and I'm hoping that it will be under £10 fingers cross. Let you know later.
New start

Just back spent £5.98.   I'm really pleased and hope I can stay out of the shops till next week.

Last Thursday evening I did my shopping for the week. As it will be mostly one person eating at home this week, I plan to eat some meals out of the freezer. As well as eating out of the stores. We also have a lot left after the birthday celebration. Always a benefit.

So my shopping came to 23.56 Euros. This included a pie for my work colleagues.

This should last us for the week. So I am quite happy about that.

I would like to join

I wasn't really frugal last year (although I was within my general budget for the year) therefore I pledge to be better this year. I hope I can track my improvements here  

I currently go with €70 per week for 2 adults. I buy a lot of stuff from the farmers market just over the street, which is not always cheaper... I do try to stick with seasonal & local food though. We are not good with leftovers Therefore I want to reduce my food purchases and stops at the grocery store this year. We don't eat junk food/fast food/take out/prepared meals at home and I limit eating out to once a month (my weakness: sushi). Maybe I save enough to take a sushi class this year and we then stop eating out altogether

Unfortunately, I am a terrible gardener but at least I can grow my own herbs  


Welcome to the grocery challenge, Christine, I'll add you to our very special list of challengers in post one. And I have to say, Vienna is one of the places I always meant to visit, but have only managed as far as Innsbruck so far. Maybe one day - if I can keep the grocery budget down and talk myself into saving for a new passport.

My own annual grocery budget is at £886.08/£975 after my freezer order and I am going to have to get more milk and a sack of potatoes soon.

There are still two cartons of cooked turkey in the freezer, leftover from Christmas, and we've demolished a chicken over the past couple of days - roast dinner one day, stir fry the next and now I have the stock bubbling away for soup, but there should be enough meat left on the bones for a small chicken stew type meal if I add some veggies and dough balls tomorrow.

Meanwhile, I'm pigging out on Christmas chocolates and the last of the shortbread I'd made - never even got around to making any mince pies this year after two lots of neighbours brought some for us.

I really do need to eat down the stocks in the kitchen if for no other reason, I want the kitchen renovations completed this year so I can invest in my nice new cooker before it gets another year's worth of more expensive!

This weeks shopping has amounted to  £6.99 for a bag of Dog Food. No more shopping until at least Wednesday.
Cheap and Cheerful

Hi Frugaldom please can you add me to the list for this challenge.

I spent £16-44 today. That included Bold liquid, half price at £3 and 2 large , 300gr jars of nescafe. They are on offer for £4 each at Sainsburys. No point in just getting one at that price. It will last me for weeks and weeks. The other £5-44 went on milk, low cal hot chocolate and clementines. I still have a load of fresh veg.

I am cooking a small turkey tomorrow. I will freeze most of it. It came out of the freezer and will go back in small packs which take up less room.

I spent $52 today buying bread rolls, a cooked chicken, some veg and mineral water.  It is too hot to turn on the oven and salad veg are used quickly here.

I needed supplies so plenty of pasta,muesli,fruit and vegetables
I spent £41 but got 2 years worth past and 6 months worth muesli at half price.
These will last us 2 weeks hopefully.

nothing spent here yesterday or today, the left over ham was packed into 5 largeish lots and along with the bone is now in the freezer for soup in winter.
I am in the process of writing my shopping list for Wednesday, I already have a meal plan for the next 4 weeks. I shop fortnightly-except for fruit/veg which is weekly-and  meat will be cheaper if I get slightly larger quantities. I don't eat meat so I need to plan properly so that it all gets used.

*waves to Christine*  My son lives in Vienna, beautiful city

So far I've spent £31.87.  That leaves £168.13 for the rest of the month.

Storecupboard is full of pasta, rice and noodles. Freezer is full of meat and veg plus a load of prepped evening meals and soup made for lunches at work.  Picked up a load of reduced bread and rolls so my new freezer is packed.

Back to work tomorrow so no spending should happen

Spent £20.08 in the coop had a £5 off a £20 shop voucher so down to £15.08 then got another voucher, doesn't run out til 28th Jan, this is happening all month, they do some good reduced stuff too.

I haven't spent anything yet this week (usually take out my housekeeping on Friday as that's the day I visit the market) so am well within budget but have just drawn up a months menu plan and will be visiting the supermarket on Monday. Am getting mainly fruit and some meat and fish, frozen and to freeze. That should nip in the bud any impulse buys over the next fortnight. Also need milk, keep forgetting it!!!

We bought 2 chocolate muffins today on sale for €2. That was our splurge for the week. In hindsight, I should just have baked them myself which would have been much cheaper  and I could have frozen the leftovers for later use. But after Christmas and all the cookies I was totally not prepared to lust after muffins.

Afterwards I was really energized and did all the laundry + dishes for the week. I am also really proud that I wrote my first meal plan of the year 2014.   The best thing is, that we use a lot of stuff that I found today in the cupboards when I did a rough estimate what we have and what we need soon. According to that I expect that we only spend €15 on the next stop at the grocery store. *patting myself on the shoulder*

lemondrops I envy you for drawing up a meal plan for a whole month. Knowing myself + BF we could never stick to it, we are too jumpy for that (we also don't have a big freezer ). How do you do that? Do you really stick to your plan?

First grocery spends of the year

£5.36 on general grocery cleaning and  £4 on veg at the farm shop  for a half sack of carrots, a half sack of 10 swedes a stalk of sprouts with tops a cauli and half a dozen fat leeks ....and a carrier bag of greens for the animals thrown in free. So a total spend of £9.36  in bold for my own use so I can find my post easily later

Just back from the supermarket, no whoopsies about today so I stuck to my list and just bought the things I need for this months menu plan. Total spend was £39.40 which leaves 60p for the rest of this week!! But I'm not planning to shop next week at all. Plenty of bread and milk, meat and fish in the freezer and veg both in store and growing on the allotment so should be a good bit saved by the end of the month  

Christine yes I do mostly stick to it, though I change it if there's anything on really good offer when I shop. I find it helps me to avoid waste and to use allotment produce. I got into the habit when I went back to work full time years ago, and now that we've retired and are on a fixed income I find it even more useful. I usually do a week at a time rather than a month but Mr.L has health issues and the months was partly to help with those  

First week of the Grocery Challenge over and I came in at £40.63 many items will be carried over to next week. I will try to just buy milk, fruit and salad this week..  Freezer and cupboards seem to be filling up overnight!! I am working on cooking for a month in advance at the moment, not sure how that will pan out.


I managed to waste absolutely zero of the chicken. It was a really tiny chicken. so I managed to get only 2 'proper' meals from it, so 4 full meals in total, but I boiled the bones for stock and it's ready for turning into chicken and rice soup tomorrow.

After making the stock, I boiled the bones down further and have now blitzed the entire carcase - skin, bones, remaining meat and all - into a base for cat food! It resembles chicken spread, so I'm afraid I felt compelled to taste it!

It tastes just like chicken pate! (But I promise I'll turn it into cat food! )

The 500g mince has now made 4 full meals - 2 x unadulterated mince with doughballs, 2 x spag bol with the bulked out version. I have 4 packs of bargain bought soya mince to use up, so I made up 1 pack and bulked out the mince before adding a cheap jar of tomato & herb sauce to turn it into Bolognese. We had some with spaghetti tonight and there is still enough to make a large lasagne tomorrow - I simply didn't get around to it tonight. The dish I use normally makes enough for at least 4, so that will be 8 meals from 500g minced beef. I can normally do better than this but the kitchen has been under siege for so long that the thought of rolling pastry through there just does not warrant thinking about, let along doing it!

No further spends but I have now run out of ordinary milk and am onto UHT. I have also run out of potatoes but will substitute some other carbs by way of rice, pasta, cous cous, bulgar wheat or whatever else I can find in the cupboards.

My best friend does not believe how far I can stretch mince.  It is wonderfully versatile.  Today I turned  one cup of Bolognese sauce into chilli con carne.  A few beans and the mince goes a long long way.

My  cat is notoriously fussy so I might try your blitzed food.

I had to shop today.  I was pleased with the main shop as I managed to stock up on long life milk and spent around $63.  Then it was off to buy some fruit.  Please not this is just a little stock up and I am stunned from sticker shock.  It cost over $8 for 5 oranges for a start.  That little effort added another $32 to the total.  I am going to have to shop without mum and find another fruit source.


Suzan, the addition of chilli and some beans is great for stretching another meal out of the mince. I've got a stock of kidney beans in chilli sauce, excellent for adding into leftover mince. Now that you've said that, I might have enough mince to split into a pot of chilli and still have enough left over for the lasagne - off to do that now.

veggie night here chick pea and potato curry with rice. Might defrost some lamb for tomorrows tea will do a root veg mash as I have lots of those and a cauli cheese to use up a bit of the bechamel sauce i stocked up on from AF .....cheaper than flour and milk. On a bit of a time schedule tomorrow as hubby is back to work for 3 nights on
Cheap and Cheerful

I spent a pound today on a loaf as I could not face making bread as I've had 'a bit of a day' .  

I cooked a small turkey on Sunday and I am doing rubber turkey instead of rubber chicken. Most of it has gone back in the freezer in various guises. Plain, Balti, pie filling and soup. There is still some left for tomorrow.

I am using the veg I have in at the moment and I don't want to buy any fruit or veg as I have a £10 voucher for a farm shop which I hope to use as soon as I can get a lift there. I last went way before Christmas and was not happy with something I bought. They sent me a voucher to use on my next visit.


Read their page and it says the £5 off £20 spend vouchers are valid until 28th January, so I'm hitching a lift into town tomorrow to buy milk, fruit, veg then make a point of getting back over there before voucher expires.

Made the lasagne - got enough for 4 meals - and left enough mince out for two meals of chili, so that's umm... 10 meals from a 500g pack plus what got added.

And you know that little piece of Stilton I had in the gifted cheese board? Gone! I grated it and sprinkled it through the lasagne before cooking it!

I am really pleased with myself right now. I managed to make a delicious lunch of the two zucchini I still had in the fridge from I don't know when. I tried a new recipe for rice salad and it tasted good (2 lunches). I made porridge w/raspberries (frozen from last year) which lasts us until Thursday. I love to eat it with a sprinkle of brown sugar.

I can't sleep so I am well off to think about the meal plan for next week. Something has to be made with canned tomatoes & beans because we have tons   of them in the pantry. And I look forward to a fish dinner, I hope there'll be something good on sale.

did the main fortnightly shopping this morning and still have $65 left from the $150 allocated, I even have some meat for the following fortnight. Tomorrow I intend slicing, dicing and freezing the onions and capsicums so they are ready to use when my hands aren't so sore. I am determined not to waste any food this fortnight and that involves some forward planning, hence freezing the capsicums which were cheap due to not being the best quality

We were near an Aldi today so another $30 dollars odd was spent.  We topped fruit and vegetables and yogurt.  I am still stunned at the price of the oranges yesterday.

I would rather do a planned shop but it is impossible in my current situation.  I swear my mother has ADHD.  She is here, there and everywhere when shopping.

Suzan my MIL has dementia I empathise completely with the ADHD comparison

Spent a pound on milk today, lunch is posh toasties . filled with a mix of grated cheese ham bits, a sliced spring onion and some mango chutney......all leftovers but very tasty

Thanks for the reminder about stilton nyk (although mine is danish blue) I have a bag of frozen broccoli so will do a blue cheese and broccoli soup for tomorrow.

Total spend year to date £10.36

Browsing through AF, I've noticed that they have 3.5kg bags of white bread/roll mix reduced to 99p, (from 9.99). Limited to 4 per customer, expired 30th Nov 2013.

I was tempted  but as I already have multiple bags of bread flour that need using up...I'll resist.

(will now go and have a lie down as am obviously not myself! )

Too many temptations!

Catsister, I am sorely tempted by the white bread/roll mix on App Foods, I didn't notice it listed when I was browsing last time so it must be newly in stock. Arg! I have about £7 credit in my account but can't warrant spending £15 for their minimum order.

Went to Co-op today while I had the chance of a lift (it's about 20 mile round trip) and stocked up on veggies, milk and tins to the tune of £21.48 - kitchen cupboards, fridge and freezer are all absolutely brimming full! Got my £5 off voucher for next trip before the 28th Jan, so need to plan how best to spend the next £20 (less £5) to ensure I don't need to buy anything at all in February, when I'm expecting the worst of the winter to begin.

This means I have already spent £110.40 of my £975 annual budget. Planning is everything, so I'll stock up on milk, milk powder, sugar, toothpaste, washing-up liquid, beans and lentils on my next visit; that should see me through a couple of months at least!

Balance remaining: £864.60

Using up last of the lentil soup for lunch today then it will be chilli for dinner tonight and I'll defrost some leftover turkey for tomorrow's dinner. Neighbour handed me in a stick of sprouts, so it looks like it's going to be Christmas here all over again, and again, and again, judging by what's still in the freezer.

Need to use: small chunk of cabbage, few carrots and everyone on the MSE version of this challenge seems to be talking coleslaw, so... grater at the ready!

I stopped today for the first time in the new year at the grocery store and spent € 11.76. I only had to buy veggies, some fruit and yogurt. As they did not have everything what was on the list, I saved a few euros. I did not buy anything that was not on the list  

We had polenta with herbs, cheese and mushrooms for dinner, (4 meals). BF will bring some lunch to work this time.

We're almost out of butter and milk now, so that goes on the shopping list for next week.
New start

I'm out of fresh veg. It's made me think,that when I shop for veg and fruit I need to be more careful.
I will make a list as this is the way fulward for me. Also taking cash with me than I can't over spend.

I had to run to the store today to buy bread, therefore I also put in milk in the cart and more fruit.

I spent €4.97 As I only took a €5 bill with me to spend, I am really happy!

total spent in 2014 so far €16.73

We're far under what we normally spend, I try to reduce the weekly spending for groceries from €70 to €40.
New start

Done the shop for the week,it came to £19.98. This is the first time I have been to the farm shop this year. So I'm very pleased with myself.
Need to get butter at the weekend. So should not spend much more this week. Any left over I'm going to save toward my next AP order.

Visited sainsbobs and spent £48 which includes squash and stuff for DH to take to work to replenish his supplies and the rest is for the 3 of use for the week, under the £60 but am hoping next week will be better.  If it is, then I can see a pattern forming and if it carries on for a couple of more weeks, then I know where I need to change and improve my planning/spending.

Still managing to avoid the shops but will call in at Aldi on the way home tomorrow to pick up some fruit and green veggies.

Have been really good at eating from my stores this week, (helped by the fact that I'm Home Alone!) and I'm starting to see spaces in my cupboards!  Ok, they are only small spaces but they are there!

I've had ham and soup mix stew for lunch most days at work, usually eaten with hm bread rolls. I baked on Sunday and froze most of the rolls so that I wouldn't be tempted to eat them all in one go....(it has been known....sigh ).

I made a mushroom and garlic cheese sauce with pasta for dinner last night and also made a bolognaise sauce with 250gm of pork mince and a jar of pasta sauce that my Mum had brought down from my sister's.  She is VERY pernickity about not eating things past their sell-by date and as the six bottles that Mum brought down would be past their SB dates in a couple of months, she was going to throw them away!   Two of them were from the Lloyd Grossman range!!  I have given them a good home and am working through them.  Somehow, I don't think I be seeing her shopping on AF.....

I had some of the resulting sauce for dinner tonight and will use half to make a lasagne and the other half I'll use to make a chilli and put it into the freezer.

I've run out of fresh fruit so have resorted to opening a tin of broken mandarin slices, (20p from AF), it'll keep me going until I hit Aldi's tomorrow.

Total spend on Groceries to date, (from 22/12/2013) = £1.75

Everyones doing really well

catsister I have a sister like that too , she sends us out of date veggies for  'pig food'.........and we eat them ! Mind you we also eat the 'free for pets' veggies from the farmshop too  this week I got a carrier bag full of lovely savoy cabbage leaves all lovely just a bit muddy!

Spent 89p yesterday on a 6 pack of low fat crisps Total spend year to date £11.25

Today we had poached eggs on toast for brekkie , leftover curry and couscous for lunch and tonights dinner is a sort of scotch broth ....lots of root veg with lamb neck and pearl barley


Is it too late for me to join this challenge NYK?

Re: Joining

Retrowren wrote:
Is it too late for me to join this challenge NYK?

It's never too late to join

I decided to hit Asda rather than Aldi as I didn't really want any of this week's Super Six and it seemed silly to use extra petrol!

I spent a total of £4.29 and brought, 6 gala apples, 5 naval oranges, 6 pears , two small head of broccoli, a spring cabbage and a packet of lard, (to make some pastry with tomorrow). I was very tempted to get a turkey leg for £2.00 but stuck to my pledge to eat up what I've got in the freezer before buying anything more.

Breakfast was mixed grain porridge with cocoanut, raisins and cinnamon.  

Lunch was provided at the 'total waste of time and money' training day I had to attend. It was a nice buffet and I was very restrained and didn't eat any of the rather tasty looking cakes they provided for dessert, (I did pinch all the strawberry garnishes though!).

I made a lasagne with some of the bolognaise sauce I made on Wednesday and added some AF ready cooked mixed beans and a dash of chilli powder to the rest.  I shall have more lasagne for lunch tomorrow and will portion up the chilli mix and put it in the freezer ready for meals later on.

I have also stewed a couple of apples that had gone too soft to eat, with cinammon and raisins and will make some small apple pies for dessert on Sunday when my younger OOD and his girlfriend are coming for a meal.

Now, if I can manage to get the rest of the lasagne into the fridge without eating any........


]Total grocery spend this year to date = £6.04

An extravagant use it up meal

The second half of last night's boiled potatoes, the freebie sprouts supplied by neighbour and a 50p pack of cooked ham all heated over the stove in the steamer followed by homemade custard with 10p from App Food tinned mandarin oranges.

Totally carbed out but it used up the little pack of ham and the hens got the stalk and extra leaves from the sprouts.

Spent £5 today at farm shop 6 each pears, bananas and clementines a small jar of spring(runny ) honey and a cauli so

Total spend year to date £16.25

Got family coming for dinner tomorrow so got the huge joint of beef  out of the freezer, got plenty of dessert ingredients but will go with jam roly poly and an apple crumble  I think

Shopping this week was minimum, just fruit, salad, milk and a couple of loaves for the freezer as a standby. £16.00 spent.

Total for month £56.63/£200

Total for year £56.63

Lots of using up and making do going on in most households...well done everyone!!

I am pleased with my grocery spends so far.  £7.06 spent this year so far.  Yesterday I got 24 falafels from Morri$$ons for 49p.  I had two today and the rest went in the freezer in pots of four.

I emptied my main pantry today and cleaned all the shelves because the bottom shelf had a bit of mould growing on it.  I put everything on the table and have put back anything that I used today, tea, coffee, medications etc.  I also put back the stuff that we use regularly, beans, porridge, flour etc.  So I am now going to concentrate on eating the items left on the table.  Some interesting meals coming up.  Shame I can't do this with the freezer stuff!
Cheap and Cheerful

Hi Frugaldom  just noticed my name is not on the list yet. I am definitely on board. I intend to make my £200 last as long as possible.
I did a big shop yesterday first the farm shop then S*bury. I had just about run out of fruit, veg and butter.  Stocked up again now. I spent £22-32 all together but £10 of that was a voucher from the farm shop so only £12-32 from my box.

Total spend so far £29-68


Sorry about that, Cheap and Cheerful, not sure how I overlooked that but I have now added your name now. Thanks for letting me know.

I am definately so glad I joined. It is such an inspiration to see how everyone is doing.

I did my weekly shopping last Friday. But as our village Lidl is closed for until 19 Februari   we went to to Lidl in the next village. It is so frustrating to walk around there not knowing where everything is. But we managed. But they did not have many veg, so we also ended up in another supermarket next to it.

Our weekly shop added up to 28,36 Euros. This included 750g lean beef mince on offer. So that will be stretched. Starting tonight with chili con carne. I also soaked and boiled pulses to go in portions in our tiny freezer. We love them so we will use them to bulk out meals.

So I including this shop my shopping amounts to 187.75 Euros. So I will probably go over for my 200 Euros until the 24th. But am happily surprised I am still under.

'Use it up' meals

Baked a large loaf this morning and need to bake some biscuits. Still on 'use it up' mode but managed to use the last of a jar of mincemeat and the scrapings from a pot of marmalade last night - all added to sweet chilli sauce for some turkey stir fry.

Hot dogs for lunch twice this past week after buying 'reduced'  finger rolls while visiting my nearest Co-op (20 miles round trip). Now here is where I made a HUGE mistake! The finger rolls were reduced to 56p per pack. We don't have supermarkets near us, so no need to tell me I could have bought them cheaper at X, Y or Z, thank you, but I did make a mistake.

The tinned hot dogs cost 3 tins for £1, each tin contains 8, so that's just over 4p each. Add on 9p each for the rolls and round it up another couple of pennies on for a scrape of margarine and some tomato ketchup and 15p is sounding like a cheap hotdog, isn't it? Except for one thing - we ate 8 hotdogs on 6 small finger rolls between two of us at each sitting, so that worked out at about 50p each just for lunch!  

When you consider a budget of £1 per person per day for all meals, you can see that this sort of food should never be included in the frugalers' shopping basket.

I won't be making that mistake in a hurry again! ISee how easily I got caught out by supposed bargains?

A spend of £4.35 today, we ran out of butter so called at sainsburys on our way out picked up a nice lean pack of cooking bacon too, over 600gm for £1 10. Quiche and chicken and bacon pie on next weeks menu.

Told hubby he is sacked from baking bread as he has forgotten to put salt in the last 2, resulting in lots of breadcrumbs for stuffings etc!

Total for month £60.98/£200

Nyk - my lot want at least 4 hot dogs each for a lunchtime snack, it's easy to get caught out by bargains and stickered items don't beat yourself up. The shops have become a bit of a battleground pushing deals and offers but never on the basics, you really do have to have your wits about you when shopping.....don't get me started on labelling!!!

Does anyone watch the truth about food ?

edit :spent another £2 on milk and butter

Total spend year to date £18.25
I am amazed at how well we have eaten without spending much, just shows stockpiling pays!


Shaz, don't worry - beating myself up isn't something I am prone to, ever.

£1.62 spent on 2L milk from village store yesterday - so much for hoping prices might lower when it changed from Keystore to Spar.

HM bread toasted with spaghetti for lunch today, haven't even thought about dinner but do need to think about cutting down my carbs! I can hardly fasten my jeans over the top of my fleecy leggings now!!  

I picked up some frozen spinach from the store at the weekend but did not have time to post, 400g for €2.19, that was expensive but I was in 3 stores and only one had frozen spinach ?!! Are you kidding me? (In hindsight I realize that I could have made it with chard but in the spur of the moment I forgot about all the other greens available.)

Our bill adds up to €18.82

It's still pretty low for us. I am totally surprised by this. We are trying to hold out until Wednesday for our next grocery stop. [We were eating no meat this week, I made another batch of polenta w herbs, and a stir fry with napa cabbage and carrots as well as buddha bowls - veggies, chickpeas + rice with an egg on top and a dip with herbs] I found out that it totally helps me/us that I only allow myself one stop at the store per week. As the meal planning thing is up and running I hope that we will stick to this routine. All is well. 

Buddha bowls sounds interesting Christine , what are the shops like near you , is it local shops or supermarkets ?

My grocery spends so far is £42.25p
This is just fruit, veg and salad and staples for cupboard but have stayed away from stores.My problem is the diet I am on I need fresh salad and eating Rabbit portions of salad:)


We are lucky frozen spinach is 99p here I buy frozen to cook with instead of fresh to save money.


My carb intake is a lot less (sadly i adore carbs) tis hard but worth it.


Yes, carbs are my downfall too

Have eaten all reduced food for tea today using up stuff. Sorry NYK I posted it on the wrong thread. Should have been here I think
So I won't repeat myself!

Buddha bowls do sound interesting, would love to know more about these Christine. And having a Lidl in each village sounds good to me....
NYK could do with one or two of them!

I've worked out my my budget at the moment, but it isn't set in stone, I'm hoping to reduce it as I get further into Spring.

It's £70.00 for my grocerys per week at the moment . And £30.00 per week for petrol. All this obviously doesn't include my home fuels etc...
That's £10 a day for us which is more than plenty I think.
I have to have a car unfortunately because of my Miss 18 's epilepsy. She can't go anywhere alone or on public transport due to the huge amount of seizures she has so I have to drive her etc...

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