For roughly a year now I have menu planned for the week and grocery shopped accordingly. I have found it saves me time and stress. Instead of wasting time trying to think of what we will have for dinner each night, I have planned it ahead of time and have the exact groceries needed for the dish at home. My grocery budget is $100 but I have been going over that a bit more lately. Prices have gone up and I need to either shop smarter or increase my budget.
This is how I do it:
- I sit with pen and paper and write out a 7 day menu plan with a supermarket specials catalogue for guidance on what is super cheap or in season.
- I then write my ingredients for each meal and check to see what I have at home (shop at home 1st).
- With the ingredients list I am able to write my shopping list under headings of the areas the items are in; for example Deli, Fruit n Veg, Dry & Tin, Frozen etc.
- Having my list categorised alleviates the need to browse the aisles and make impulse purchases.
- I allow myself to stray from my list if I see a cheaper item that can be replaced for another item in my menu or a not to be missed deal and I always allow for a few special treats to prevent corner shop splurges.
|My Groceries for this week came to $76.36|
My menu's are pretty flexible, if we don't feel like a dish on a particular night then it's not a problem to cook something else. However I like all our meals to be simple to make as my kitchen is tiny and pathetic... It drives me crazy!
I do have a problem of going into the supermarket most mornings to purchase breakfast (fruit, bread or sweet stuff) as I arrive at work 30 minutes early most days. I want to stop this habit so I will need to plan my breakfasts carefully.
My Menu Plan for this week was:
- Vegetarian Pasta. (Vegetables chopped up small, tinned tomatoes and dried Italian herbs placed on a bed of spaghetti.)
- Chicken and Vegetable Soup (Left over roast chicken cooked with vegetables.)
- Curry and Rice (Cheap soup bones meat, vegetables, tined tomatoes and lots of spices. Rice on the side.)
- Omelet and Salad. (Eggs, cheese, bacon bits and a green salad on the side.)
- Vegetable Stir Fry with Rice. (Vegetables marinated in olive oil, ginger (from garden), garlic, lemon grass (from garden), oyster sauce and soy sauce before being tossed in hot wok. Rice on the side.)
- Roast with Vegetables and Salad. (Small roast pork cooked with vegetables and apples. Green salad on the side.)
The Rambling Expat went fishing today, he spent $25 on fuel and nibbles and caught 4 tuna fish. So our weekly menu will change, some of these meals (which I already batched cooked) will be frozen to allow for lots of fish eating this week. Click HERE to see the Tuna he caught!
How do you shop for your food items?