HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >
What are you cooking today? Tell us about it
TELL US

how big is your weekly food bill

f
foodperv Mar 14, 2009 09:47 AM

i have 5 adults 1 baby in the house
i spend $150 bucks a week on food of which maybe 15-16 bucks is on prepared food (not take out) frozen pizza,frozen dinner etc.... we eat very well too 2 of us are pleasingly plump

just curious as to what others here spend family size, weekly food bill , how much of it is prepared food etc

  1. j
    Jolly_Rancher Oct 22, 2009 01:09 PM

    For my family of 4, with cat and 2 dogs, we spend $200-$250 per week. However, we never eat out. We also purchase mostly organic food, lots of high quality meats, breads, cereals, some pre-prepared foods, etc. We skimp on nothing and the frig is mostly full. None of us is obese. Two of us are quite thin.

    1. l
      LJS Mar 26, 2009 08:47 AM

      Here in Toronto, on my own, I spend about $70 for one person, including wine, all meals and with at least one 'entertaining at home' event every week.

      My husband who lives in Calgary right now,(long story, all good) also spends about $60-$70 a week.

      But when we live together in the same place in the summers, whether it is Toronto, or Calgary or Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, the bill will be $80 per week.

      Lesson: it is way cheaper to feed 2 together than individually.

      3 Replies
      1. re: LJS
        krisrishere Mar 26, 2009 09:21 AM

        You're lesson is absolutely right-on. It was so hard buying food when I had 3 people in my house because everything comes in 2's. I would always have one of something leftover.

        1. re: krisrishere
          l
          LJS Mar 26, 2009 12:38 PM

          And what is leftover is so confining to the culinary imagination.

          What I mean is best explained with a lunch-time example. Decided to turn last night's leftover chicken into chicken salad, so I picked up an avocado at lunch. I used half of it as the whole thing would have overwhelmed the salad. Ate it happily.

          But now I have half an avocado left over...I have already decided on an Italian style pasta dish for supper that usefully uses up all the roasted veggies leftover from the first cooking of the chicken breasts (which came in 2's, as you so accurately noted), but no matter how imaginative my palate wants to be, avocado doesn't fit into my Italian dish.

          I know I will end up either chowing down on it anyway standing at the sink or throwing it out, like the half tomato, bits of lemon, portions of homemade bread, and puddings. My freezer is stuffed but not in a good way...sigh.

          Feels like I am always chasing the same meal...I can hardly wait for summer when that one avocado and the 2 chicken breasts will all have their very economical purpose!

          1. re: LJS
            f
            foodperv Apr 11, 2009 07:32 AM

            LJS i have a thought about the leftover bits so as not to waste things like the 1/2 of the avacado two ways
            one maybe if you double the recipes so you have to use the whole items and as you say for part of the yr you live alone invite a friend or neighbor over 1-2 times a week like maybe the little old man or lady down the street who is lonely that could use a good meal and company of a nice person as your self
            two do a few min. of research on other recipes you can serve the same day that can use the whole items

      2. flourgirl Mar 26, 2009 06:28 AM

        Right now I'm running about $150 per week at the grocery store for three of us (2 adults, one child) - but that includes pet food for one dog and two cats plus all our cleaning supplies/paper goods/most personal care items. My bills had reached a little over $200 a week last year but I've been working REALLY hard to pare them down because we are determined to get some leftover debt paid off - and then maybe try to start saving a little.

        I buy very little in the way of prepared foods - but I do buy some snack foods here and there. We don't eat out very often. Maybe once or twice a month at most. My son brown bags 4 out of 5 days and my husband and I do more often than not as well.

        1. krisrishere Mar 23, 2009 11:54 AM

          I spend about $60-$100 a week for two of us. Every other week I buy just meat and that runs me about $100. The rest of the weeks are just the "usual suspects".

          3 Replies
          1. re: krisrishere
            f
            foodperv Mar 24, 2009 07:43 PM

            one prob. i see with higher food bills for families of 1-3 people is that the smaller contianers of food cost the same or more than family sized ones example a 13-14 oz can of peas is 63 cents a 4-6 oz one is 69 cents

            1. re: foodperv
              RShea78 Mar 24, 2009 11:33 PM

              foodperv, you lost me. Perhaps in your terminology?

              Family sized to me is a can roughly 28 oz or greater

              Standard cans roughly 15 oz.

              Single serving or convenience size is roughly 6< oz with the exceptions for items like tomato paste or mushrooms.

              However, I do agree that there can be a pricing dilemma we face with many food items. Bulk items are not always cheaper (per oz) while "cute little items" may even be higher as well. Deals are generally found in standard marketing packs, whatever that may be in the given situation. We just have to be sharp enough to stretch that food dollar.

              1. re: foodperv
                kchurchill5 Mar 25, 2009 09:05 AM

                I know exactly what you mean. If we all had room for larger quantities, we would in the end save more. Unfortunately we don't. But very true. I could of got a family pack of chicken for not much more than what I bought. But NO room at all to cook or to freeze. Good point.

            2. jeni1002 Mar 21, 2009 07:15 PM

              $100 a week for 2 people excluding non-food items. A typical trip includes, TJs, WF, two supermarkets (depending on what's on sale), and the local bakery. I don't eat meat, but DH does; we rarely do frozen meals or desserts, but need fresh fruit, good cheese, and crusty bread. We go out about once a week - depending on mood, it can be anything from the local pizza joint to a fancy dinner. We are known to travel quite some distances in the name of a craving.

              I resigned myself that given that we cook most of our meals at home, $50 per week per person is acceptable.

              1. jadec Mar 21, 2009 06:57 PM

                $25 a week for 1 person for 21 meals.

                2 Replies
                1. re: jadec
                  kchurchill5 Mar 21, 2009 07:32 PM

                  Good job! Probably 35-40 depending on what I make for just me, when my son is here is differs. I am frugal but still eat well. Like fresh fruits and veggies and still use leftovers well. This doesn't include bourbon which I enjoy or a good bottle of wine and my beer when I get home. I love a cold beer after work, a good glass of wine with dinner and a nightcap. Sue me!!! I don't many sweets and eat out very little. Only with work which I am compensated and with friends for a special occasion. Hosting a party doesn't count in. I love soups, chowders, roasting turkeys, chickens and roasts because you can use it for so much. People go out and spend a fortune for a guesadilla dinner with beans and salad. WOW, Under 4 maybe 5 dollar if that, if made at home. Why go out. And it takes no time and me ... I like to get kids involved. Show them how and make them help out. It can be fun to make.

                  1. re: jadec
                    f
                    foodperv Mar 24, 2009 07:38 PM

                    fantastic jadec whats on the menu

                  2. RShea78 Mar 21, 2009 06:47 PM

                    The problem Me has, is Myself and I to feed. IOW- Me, Myself and I = 3 = and the constant arguing in the grocery store. Myself would just rather stay home rather than have to listen to Me and I argue so much. I rather do the shopping but Me wants to stay in the car and play the radio. ;-)

                    1. hotcookinmomma Mar 21, 2009 02:54 PM

                      There are 6 of us in my house and I ocassionally cook for my mother. We have 4 kids and buy more prepared food that I would like. We spend $500 to $700 a month depending on sale items, coupons and special events. probally 1/3 of that is prepared food that is including jelly, frozen pizza,and bread.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: hotcookinmomma
                        f
                        foodperv Mar 24, 2009 07:37 PM

                        hotcooin that works out to be about 160 a week for 6 that is pretty good

                      2. corneygirl Mar 21, 2009 09:55 AM

                        There are two adults in the midwest here. I just got my dividend check from the coop where we buy 90% of our food. Adjusting for warm months when I buy a lot at the farmers market and have a CSA share we spend $90 to $100 a week, including most of our wine, but little of the beer.

                        1. s
                          sueatmo Mar 19, 2009 07:32 PM

                          There is the two of us here in the Midwest, but we try to eat healthy. Our budget is $150 per week, and I admit with embarassment that keeping to it is hard. We eat out once or twice a week, as well, but never do fine dining. I have finally separated much of the non-food into a monthly shopping trip separate from the food. And I've been working on keeping food stock supplied. I don't do much with processed food. We've decreased our consumption of meat. I don't know why our bill is so high.

                          1. j
                            Janet from Richmond Mar 19, 2009 09:50 AM

                            These are the threads I probably should not respond to. We spend A LOT on food and wine. Our grocery store tab is probably $150-$200/week depending on the week. Our wine/liquor for home is probably $500/month and we spend about $500-$600/week eating and drinking out. And if we host a party or two they run about $300-500/each when it's all said and done. Our household is two adults...empty nesters.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Janet from Richmond
                              j
                              JRCann Mar 19, 2009 01:06 PM

                              Janet... Looks like we are in the same boat! And relatively close by so geographic costs are close. We are also just two, however sister-in-law has lunch here about 4X week.
                              I have taken to shopping at a local asian/international grocery (Fresh World/el Mercado) and have found that I am able to cut my grocery bill by $50-60/per visit. Produce and meats are about 30-50% less. Wine bill is also a big factor here and sadly I have not found an anwser to that problem. How come Italian and French wine prices have not dropped as the Euro/US dollar rate has moved by 20-30% in our favor since last year?

                            2. o
                              olivertwist Mar 18, 2009 06:34 AM

                              Wow ... I feel terrible. I spend roughly $150 per week at the stores I frequent, but that includes non-food items too. The food portion is probably at least $100. I cook almost daily and we both pack lunches quite often, but it does seem high.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: olivertwist
                                a
                                alexjames Mar 18, 2009 08:10 AM

                                To get a UK perspective, about $300 per week for three adults. Adjusting factors are that prices tend to be higher here and we have expensive tastes. Or I do and seeing as I am responsible for almost all of the shopping and cooking...

                                Tis an estimate of course (at £1 = $1.40) and not helped by the fact that I settle ny butcher's bill only annually.

                              2. Johnresa Mar 18, 2009 06:27 AM

                                I spend $40-$50 a week and it is just me. Guess I am a hungry one :-)

                                1. l
                                  lgss Mar 15, 2009 02:30 PM

                                  Check this thread....http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/566908

                                  1. p
                                    pickledginger Mar 15, 2009 02:12 PM

                                    I'm embarrassed by how high my food bill is so I don't want to add it all up. I try for organic produce and meat from the farmer's market, and even though I only get the less expensive items they're still pricier than conventional versions. I regularly shop at four or five different places, and on average it probably totals upwards of $75/wk for the two of us...

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: pickledginger
                                      f
                                      foodperv Mar 24, 2009 07:33 PM

                                      well pickledginger concidering mostly organic i guess not to bad

                                    Show Hidden Posts