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How do I cut down on my weekly food bill - its ridiculous the amount Im spening

(42 Posts)
hulahoopsilove Thu 24-Oct-13 11:35:16

there are 3 of us me, hubby and DS age 8. Im doing SW so Im eating alot of fresh veg, fruit, salad stuff plus my DS love vegs and cucumber (go through 2 cucumbers a weeksmile)

Im spending average £80 in supermarket (Morisons, or Asda) then another £20 in local shops (sainsburys) in the week so over £100 a week on 3 of us!!! Crazy dont you think?

bluebayou Thu 24-Oct-13 13:29:24

Start going to Aldi & Lidl , amazingly inexpensive . , AND good quality .

funnyossity Thu 24-Oct-13 13:31:01

Cambridge Blue did you read the reports this week that perhaps saturated fat isn't as bad as we have been led to believe?

So some cheaper cuts of meat such as belly pork could be a good meal choice, you would have to be careful on portion size but fat is satiating (is that the right word?!)

MrsPnut Thu 24-Oct-13 13:32:52

Frozen veg is brilliant because you don't waste any of it. I usually have in peas, sweetcorn, brussel sprouts, chopped onions, sliced peppers, mixed veg, casserole veg, mashed potato and spinach, and butternut squash.

I also buy frozen garlic, chilli, ginger, parsley, mint and coriander - I can make so many meals with just these frozen ingredients.

kawaii Thu 24-Oct-13 13:39:17

For three of us I struggle to keep it undo £120. That includes everything though.

Cleaning products, no meat except one organic chicken which is about £8 and lots of veg. Plus me and dd are gluten and dairy free so have to buy quite a bit of free from which is very expensive. I hardly buy any fruit as it costs so much now.

I've tried Aldi and don't think the vegetables are great and no free from stuff. But I think you could definitely save on things like nappies, crisps and washing products.

Possibly do a split shop, buy what you can in Aldi then pick up the rest in another supermarket. Of course then the petrol might off set the savings depending on location!

Littleredsquirrel Thu 24-Oct-13 13:40:14

It sounds quite a lot to me. We spend less and we are a family of four. How are your stock cupboards? Once your pantry supplies are in order then shopping is generally cheaper because for example you're not buying a whole jar of cumin just to use one pinch in a recipe.

I have found that value pasta is fine, as are value tinned tomatoes, value fruit juice, value butter, value kidney beans, value chickpeas, cheapest milk. Buy expensive things like cheese when its on offer. Cheese keeps for ages and will also freeze. Shop the offers rather than going in with a set idea of what you must buy. I walk down the middle aisle first and pick up any offers, go straight to the bargain section to pick up anything reduced (sundays are great) and then adjust my meal plan around that.

Frozen veg is great since far less goes to waste and it has far more nutritional value since the nutrients and vitamins are sealed in.

Buy the cheap fruit, (bananas and apples NOT grapes and berries)

Freeze (and USE) EVERY leftover, from a handful of berries going squishy (fine in a crumble), a dry bit of cheese (good in risotto), a black banana (peel freeze and use in banana loaf) to a bit of leftover garlic bread (whizz in food mixer, bung in a bag and use as a topping on pasta bake).

Salad is expensive, can you grow your own leaves on the window sill?

funnyossity Thu 24-Oct-13 13:42:12

OP Just saw you like free-range chicken: we tried Aldi's last week and it was good and I'll get it again. (It was £5-odd and bigger than the last I bought elsewhere for over £7)

Littleredsquirrel Thu 24-Oct-13 13:47:19

try a cheap main meal each week:

pasta bake (cheap as chips even with a handful of chicken thrown in)
risotto (yum - rice, stock handful of chicken and a little boursin cheese)
quiche (three eggs, some milk, a bit of pastry and whatever is leftover in your fridge)

all come in at a couple of quid and will feed all of you.

souperb Thu 24-Oct-13 14:03:28

With the yogurts in packed lunches - are you buying individual portion-sized pots? The larger pots of plain yogurt are often better value. Decant some into a small lock and lock-style container and add apple puree/banana/honey/cinnamon/raisins/smarties etc. to make it a bit more exciting. Anything wrapped up in individual portions is bound to be more expensive than a big box/tub of it, and not only are you being cheap and miserly but you are also saving the whales, man.

Frozen veg is good value and you only use what you need. Or see if you have a good value market, grocer or ethnic supermarket nearby.

What are you buying in your top up shop? I am trying to lose the top up shop as it is my downfall every time - and DH is a thousand times worse. A breadmaker is helping and we don't use much milk as a family now. But fresh stuff doesn't always last and our online delivery often misses something and nearly always breaks eggs.

SunnyL Thu 24-Oct-13 14:15:14

Go to Lidl. We spend £40 a week for 2.5 of us and eat lots of meat, fresh veg and the odd bottle of wine. Avoid brand name goods and go for the imitation stuff. It's just as good and very tasty.

Cat98 Thu 24-Oct-13 14:25:36

We're the same op!
There's me, dh, a 5 year old with a big appetite and a cat.
Our weekly shop (one main shop, one top up) has just REDUCED to about £90 p/w after I made a few changes.

I meal plan, we eat veggie twice a week, I have cut down portion sizes of meat when I cook it as I too prefer to buy British/free range. We were spending more. I don't know how I could get it down any more really. Unless we compromised on meat quality.
That is also including most toiletries/cleaning products/cat litter and things though, not just food.

hulahoopsilove Thu 24-Oct-13 14:39:36

ok Im going to try the frozen veg route and see if anyone notices. I must go through the freezer tonight though, needs defrosting also so I think rest of this week and next week I will meal plan from it and the cupboards and use up everything then start a fresh by meal planning, shopping at Aldi and also doing a couple of meat free days and also making a little extra and freezing - I will report back in a month lol to say how much Ive saved each week smile quite looking forward to it actually!!!!!!!!!!

Fluffycloudland77 Thu 24-Oct-13 14:48:08

If you buy a the mirror today it has a £5 off £40 spend voucher, plus some half price vouchers.

Aldi is brilliant for veg, there's lots of stew type veggies on it at the moment. I cut & freeze veg when it's cheap. Even courgettes freeze really well.

KitWillDoodle Thu 24-Oct-13 14:50:19

Have friends that swear by meal planning, I have sat down to do it a couple of times and, quite frankly, couldn't be bothered! Couple of things I've done that have made a difference, frozen broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts. Also I try not to buy bags of lettuce leaves, the amount of half used bags I was throwing out was shameful! We have an egg and beans night every now and again and actually have a good old laugh about how very 70's it feels. Also veggie risottos I find are a great way to go without meat every now and again. Ooh, another winner, massive batch of 'hidden' vegetable pasta sauce, bang, portioned in the freezer, god send on a night when you can't think straight about cooking! But def think trying some frozen veg might be a start.

funnyossity Thu 24-Oct-13 14:52:04

I also shop at a local Tesco and I find it cheaper than Aldi when they have special offers on. So packs of apples are 2 for 1 this week and last week I stocked up when their baking supplies were 3 for 2. Those things are predictable too, the baking section does it every October for the christmas cake bakers I guess!

I've stopped getting much fruit and veg at Aldi as I ended up throwing some of it away, maybe that's just my local store. I do look over the weekly offers but am wary now. The fairtrade bananas have always been ok.

CambridgeBlue Thu 24-Oct-13 15:20:08

Thanks funny I hadn't seen that - I love belly pork so I will believe it's good for me smile

Littleredsquirrel Thu 24-Oct-13 15:20:30

Post a list of what you have in your cupboards and freezer Hula and we'll help you use it up effectively and also help you to get a good stock cupboard list set up so that can buy the things you need when they are on offer.

Special offers are your friend!

dementedma Sun 27-Oct-13 21:23:31

Agree to meal planning. It makes a big difference and stops lot of waste. I take out the weekly budget in cash and keep it in an envelope along with the receipts from any spend, so I can see where it has gone.Topping up with the debit card is fatal!
Aldi is great for cheap household and cleaning products. They also do the best Greek yoghurt, nice inexpensive wine, good cold meats, and nice brioche thingies.

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