Our Grocery Budget: Explanation

I know that for many it is always hard to figure out just how much you should be spending on groceries each month. We struggled with that until we came up with a total that seems to work for us most of the time. Our grocery budget includes food, toiletries, paper goods, diapers/wipes, cleaners and anything else that is a necessity around the house. 

We budget $375 a month. Some months we have four grocery shopping trips in that time period and others we have to stretch five grocery shopping trips in. We go grocery shopping every Saturday or Sunday each week. Depending on the month and the dates of our credit card statement we sometimes have an extra weekend. The month of January is one of those months. An extra weekend means that we have to be even more careful with how we spend our grocery budget.

From the $375 I hold back $50 for diapers and wipes. Most of the time I do not use the entire $50 because I do surveys throughout the month to hopefully add up to a little help on the cost of diapers. 

So for this month we have $325 for 5 grocery shopping trips for 5 weeks worth of groceries and essentials. Our budget each week is $65. Right now our family consists of 2 adults and 1 child who is 19 months old. It's doable at this time, but with the addition of a new baby come this summer we'll probably have to reevaluate our grocery budget to account for more diapers and wipes as well as an older child who may eat a little more. 

I do coupon so that does help, however my biggest grocery budget helper is setting a menu each week for suppers. Lunches are leftovers or sandwiches unless I have some extra ingrediants to whip up something different. We usually only have toast or cereal for breakfast. Pretty simple. 

Menu planning truly helps because I can plan around the sale ad as well as know what I need to get when I go to the store. Not going to the store a few times a week really helps keep our budget in check. I think we eat pretty good food for supper. 

Our menu for next week looks like this:

Sunday- Brauts, Hot Dogs, Cottage Cheese & Potato Salad
Monday- Crunchwraps and Grilled Pineapple Slices
Tuesday- Ham and Cheese Sliders
Wednesday- French Toast
Thursday- Spaghetti with Italian Sausage Sauce, Corn and Bread
Friday- Oven Tacos
Saturday- Oven Baked Chimcahngas and Rice

This week with some stock up items, snack items we like as well as fresh fruit I may be pushing our $65 budget however hopefully I will be able to stay under or right at. Last week I was under by $10 so I do have a little cushion room to play with but not much. 

It is definently easier when there are only four weekends because our budget is around $80 a week, but we just have to plan a little more and not splurge as often on last minute items. 

Here's to hoping to stay at budget! :)

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