Over the weekend, my boyfriend and I decided to challenge the notion that you have to spend tons of cash to eat healthy. Since becoming vegan, I have learned that this works well for your body and your bank account. I also know that my grocery and food bill CAN get expensive, but that is mainly from convenience foods or grabbing food/snacks/lunches on the run. But I figured that if I wrote out my meal plans, created my shopping lists, and tracked my spending, I could actually stay on budget. My budget is $400 for the month (with a $100 cushion because we do workout A LOT! We definitely workout more than the average person…so our food intake will be more than regular folks.)
My results so far: $86.71
- Aldi- $46.81
- Trader Joe’s- $21.79
- Jewel- $3.50
- Whole Foods- $14.61
As you can see I went to several stores. My strategy was to get as many items as I could from Aldi’s as I could (considering they are fairly inexpensive) and grab the rest from Trader Joe’s. Well sometimes TJ’s doesn’t have everything, so I end up at other stores…but these excursions were not all in the same day.
So far this process has not been daunting, nor has it been any more of a hassle than my usual grocery shopping trips. (I usually shop at multiple places.) The only difference is that I planned better instead of winging it once I got to the store. A great benefit of this challenge so far has been me NOT impulse eating or shopping. I work right near Whole Foods. So any given week, if I have not packed enough food for the day, I can easily eat from there 3-5 times (buying meals or just snacks.) I have only grabbed food once, and it is included in the total above…so I think I am doing spectacular. We will see how this works out next week!!