Overview: 1st week on a budget & meal planning

Yesterday marked the end of my first week on a $35 grocery budget. I’ve actually upped it to $40 since then but stayed within $35.

I did use my money for “other” items (protein powder) and used a little more on gas for my fun adventure today. Altogether, I made it under $100 with a nice cushion.

Lessons/notes from the week:

  • I didn’t eat out except when I was treated.
  • The fridge looked empty by week’s end.
  • The only reason my budget worked out as well as it did was because I already have staples like eggs and my mom buys me a rotisserie chicken weekly.
  • I resorted to quinoa and tuna, both items which I already have on hand. You have to get creative.
  • I didn’t mind repeating the same meals. 
  • My pancakes were sad because I didn’t buy cottage cheese this past week to fluff them up. I made sure to buy cottage cheese this week – 2 tubs!

Groceries – $31.43

  • pumpkin – $1.99
  • cake mix – $2.49
  • Clif bar (for my cousin) – $0.99
  • apple – $0.69
  • Power to the Greens (2) – $3.89
  • string cheese – $3.99
  • oat flour – $3.49
  • sparkling water + candy corn – $1.53
  • flax milk + dark chocolate pretzels + gummy bears – $7.91
  • 2 cake pans – $0.99
  • mini mint chip ice cream sandwiches (for my cousin) – $3.29

Other – $17.21

  • protein powder – $14.46
  • foodie penpal purchase #1 – $2.75

Gas – $45.08

Total – $93.72

Onto this week!

  

I’ve already done my grocery shopping, and I bought lots of snacks. Again, my family shares their chicken breasts, eggs, and spinach with me. Plus, my mom bought me Greek yogurt and we have a huge stash of tortillas, apples, and bananas that just appear out of nowhere. 🙂

I know I could have done without all those snacks…

Groceries – $35.24

  • cottage cheese (2) – $5.28
  • black beans – $0.89
  • pumpkin spice rooibos tea – $3.99
  • pumpkin Greek yogurt (3) – $3.87
  • frozen yogurt (for my cousin and I) – $5.80
  • dark chocolate pretzels + almonds + gummy bears + Clif bar (for my cousin) – $8.70
  • ranch tortilla popchips – $2.99
  • pumpkin spice pudding mix – $0.94
  • Biscoff spread – $2.78 
 

 Gummy bears!

I like to separate my gummy bears by color for fun… while watching “The Cabin In The Woods,” which was captivating. Not saying that it’s great but it did get my attention.

I’ve been a tea fiend lately. I bought Trader Joe’s pumpkin spice rooibos this week. It’s cheaper than Republic of Tea and comes in a nice tin.

Breakfasts: 

Lunches or dinners:

Snacks:

What are you baking this week? I made 3 great recipes last week (here and here) that my co-workers and student devoured: peanut butter & fleur de sel brownies, Joy the Baker’s browned butter chocolate chip cookies, and Orangette’s banana bread with cinnamon chips and more cinnamon.

This week, I want to make Joy the Baker’s “Man Bait” apple crisp and something with Biscoff spread. Any unique recipes with Biscoff or ideas on what I can make?

What does your weekly food budget look like? Do you “mooch” off others?

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