Drumroll Please....

Last night I rushed home from work, threw my husband and Josie in the car. Armed with a full juice cup and a yummy snack, we made the trek up to Whole Foods.I was a nervous wreck the whole way there. The suspense of whether or not I would live up to my claim of $75 for a full week of groceries was almost too much to bear!
I have done it for months now, but knowing that I was actually accountable this week brought the challenge to a whole 'nother level.
Then Andrew threw a curve ball in. My new weekly budget is only... $60!!! Yikes!
To calm my nerves and give me super power grocery shopping strength, we stopped at Starbucks to use my very last gift card. (sniffle, sniffle). (I am proud to say I went the whole week without ever wanting one!)
I reviewed my list and menu, making sure that I cut anything we had at home already and that I didn't forget any ingredients. Making trips to the store during the week is a budget killer for us.
Josie didn't seem to understand the reason for the voyage was to save money as she proceeded to put 10 lemons, 3 bottles of random spices, and any box with her beloved Elmo on it in her cart.
We did great in the produce and grocery sections.
One money saving tip for Whole Foods is to remember that everything sold in their stores is "All Natural" so even if you don't get the organic brands you don't have to worry about preservatives, chemical sprays, or any artificial coloring or flavoring. When we first started shopping there we didn't know that and bought everything organic. I think our first grocery bill from there was around... $400!!
Needless to say, we did some research and over the past four years have been able to get that $400 down to $60!
You have to look around because a lot of times the organic items are on sale for less then the non organic items.
We also try to get frozen items, like those chicken nuggets in there, when they are on sale. Josie isn't a big eater so 3 or 4 are plenty for a meal. That makes the box last quite awhile. These were on sale for $3.50.
Whole Foods also has a flier with coupons in it. We almost always buy the store brand "365" because it is usually considerably cheaper so we don't use many coupons. This week they had a few in there for the store brand though. I'm hoping they start doing that more.I hate the meat department. I never know exactly how much to get and it's the one place where the price isn't so clear. What I do love about it though is that you get to choose how much you will get. We don't always need a full pack when we're making say chili. Using the butcher allows us to cut our meat cost by only getting what we need.
I told the butcher about my $60 challenge while he was wrapping up our meat. He got all excited and started helping me compare prices. It turned out that the family pack was $20 for 6 9 oz breasts and we were about to spend $15 on 4 6 oz ones. So even though the family pack was more in the beginning, it would save us money in the end. So we got the family pack and when we got home Andrew cut each piece in half and we froze them individually so I can grab what I need when I need it. I shouldn't have to buy chicken again until next month. (we only eat chicken every few days)

Another benefit of Whole Foods? I can usually feed Josie a full meal; cheese, crackers, fruit, veggies, and a snack, while we shop!
And then came the moment of truth, the check out. I think I might have been sweating a little. I almost abandoned my cart and decided not to go through with it!

I put things I was ok with putting back at the end of the belt and held my breath.

We were getting 2 weeks worth of food, so I needed to come in at $120. And at the end, the total was...


I did it!!! I think the cashier thought I was insane I was smiling so big!

And then we got home and unloaded our goods. And that's when I realized...

THEY DIDN'T GIVE ME MY RECEIPT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

But I'm ok if you all don't believe me. I know I did it and I plan to, well I have to, do it again in two weeks and you can beat your really amazing groceries that I will be getting a receipt.

Here's a list of exactly what I was able to get for $120. My menu is listed in a previous post.

  • 1/2 lb Rump Roast
  • 1/2 lb Chuck Roast
  • 6 9 oz Chicken Breasts
  • 3 1/2 lb Ground Beef
  • 1/2 lb Turkey for Sandwiches
  • 5 Loose Carrots
  • 5 Large Red Potatoes
  • 2 Large Head of Broccoli
  • 1 Large Baking Potato
  • 1 Large Sweet Potato
  • A bag of Romaine Salad
  • A bag of Loose Spinach
  • 1 Small Tomato
  • 1/4 Lb Green Beans
  • 1 Green Pepper
  • 5 Clementines
  • 3 Apples
  • 6 Bananas
  • Loaf of Bread
  • 1 Gallon 2% Milk
  • Eggs
  • Whole Milk Yogurt (big container)
  • Block of Cheddar Cheese
  • Carton of Parmesan Cheese
  • Can of Diced Tomatoes
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Tortilla Shells
  • Chicken Nuggets
  • Bag of Fries
  • Gummy Vitamins
  • Veggie Chips
  • Oatmeal (from dispenser)
  • 3 Cans of Beans for Chili
  • Apple Juice

Not to shabby! I will have to go to the regular store is for some cream of chicken soup and bananas since we go through them like we're a family of monkeys!


The Henrys said...

I'm impressed! We also buy the family back of chicken breast and some other kids of meat and them freeze them. Our budget killer is milk. Will is allergic to milk and has to have an expensive soy version to get the nutrients and fat he needs until he is 2. It sounds like you had a lot of fun. I wish we had access to a Whole Foods. There is nothing like it for us unless we want to drive 2 hours one way!

Kameron said...

That is awesome. After I get my bill down a little lower i will give whole foods a try. I will need to do a littl research in advance by going there and checking out the prices. Great job though!!

Brooke said...

I'm super impressed! Great job. I really need to buckle down and start planning out this far.

The Swann's said...

You've totally inspired me!!! And boy do I have a ton of questions for you! LOL My husband and I are really trying to tighten things in and we have a Whole Foods about 30 minutes from us (We've been shopping at Wal-Mart but love the Whole Foods) so I'm impressed that it may just be worth the drive to plan ahead and go there instead of multiple trips to Wal-Mart! So, I am curious though. Those were dinner items... What about lunch and breakfast???? I'm totally i mpressed though!!!!! :-)