Bringing Down the Food Budget

The last time I tracked my everyday expenses, I realized I eat out a lot. It’s not just restaurants. I frequent the Factory cafeteria. I stop for coffee whenever I am on the road.

These frequent food-fests don’t even include planned outings, like a recent farewell dinner for three seniors. It’s a given that I eat out at least twice a month because of the ever-changing restaurant landscape in the Bluewater Area.*

But if I want to take down The Mortgage (more on that later), I have to cut some more corners. An average lunch costs $3.75 and an average dinner over $10.

At Simple Dollar, Trent Hamm wrote about how the average American spends $7.64 a day on food, including both homemade and restaurant meals. He encourages bringing it down to $2.50 a day by using six staples as the backbone of meals: rice, beans, oatmeal, on-sale fresh produce, dry pasta, or eggs.

That seemed a little low to me, but I’m going to try it. The annual shut-down of the Factory and my mandatory retraining for new requirements mean I will be spending a lot of time at home for almost two months. It’s much easier to experiment with recipes when I will have enough time to read them and even cook elaborately.

Wish me luck!

*For example, I had been wanting to try the updated menu at The Cadillac House since its renovation. Baby Bro, as usual, was my excuse for going. Lunch was delicious, and it was startling to see the difference in the floor plan.

2 thoughts on “Bringing Down the Food Budget

  1. Our Tesco supermarket has ‘yellow ticket’ items every day. sometimes they are substantially reduced. This enables us to buy items that we wouldn’t normally do.

  2. There is a chain supermarket in the nearby town with orange markdowns, and a few times I’ve found something very cheap. Usually it’s something not very popular with locals or Canadians, such as sugared dates or Spanish wines.

    I have better luck with a smaller grocer in a neighboring town because the manager will negotiate items that are close to sell-by date or oxidized meat. (For some reason, many people on this region will not buy “grey” beef.)

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