What Do You Spend on Food?: A Grocery Budget Experiment

It is always interesting to me when people share their grocery budget and the foods they buy. There is a wide variety of opinions on how much is needed to buy groceries for a month. Look at the comments on my post about my food stamp experience and my follow-up post on food stamps to see some of the differing opinions.

I generally spend about $100-$120 a month on food, that includes groceries and restaurants. I don’t try especially hard to keep my food expenditure low but my preferred foods are fast-food and junk food which tend to be cheap. As an experiment at the beginning of this month I decided to not eat any meals out and eat whatever I wanted at home. After two weeks the results showed that I could eat just as bad at home as at a restaurant. Not eating out might have saved me some money but it didn’t result in me eating any healthier or losing any weight. That experiment has been abandoned and I am on to the next experiment.

For the month of February I will share with you all the foods I buy and what I pay for them. To try to keep my diet somewhat healthy I am only going to eat out once a week and not purchase any chips, cookies, candy, crackers, ice cream or soda. For me that will force a major change in diet although I suppose there are still plenty of bad foods left I could eat. I’m not going to buy any more food the rest of this month in order to reduce the amount of foods in my pantry before the experiment starts. I believe that with these changes I will spend less than $100 for food for the month and eat healthier than average or at least healthier than the average bachelor.

I would be interested in seeing what you spend on food. If you want to share leave a comment with your monthly food budget.

Eating on $1 a Day

There has been a lot of press lately about a couple who ate on $1 a day for a month. This is an interesting project that has been done by several people before.  I’m not sure why this one has been getting so much attention.  I did a similar project last May and spent $31.60 on food for a month.   I got the idea to do so from Hungry for a Month that did the $1 diet in November 2006.

The results of both projects were similar.  They were able to eat for that amount but it wasn’t easy.  They also remarked that they weren’t able to eat very healthy.  Looking at their menus though I think they probably ate healthier than the average American.  It definitely isn’t easy to eat on $1 a day and I’m glad I don’t have to.  Next year I’m going to try to spend $0 on food for a month if I can get it planned out.