The commissary is your friend

Katy asked me how I managed to get 2 weeks of groceries for $161. First, let me give you our menus for the next 2 weeks. Usually, I plan a certain meal for a certain day but - like my FrugalFood! friend suggested - this time I just planned out 14 meals (I put them in 2 categories - those with fresh ingredients and those that can wait until the 2nd week to be prepared).

Category 1:
scallops provecal and couscous and salad
baked ziti with hidden zucchini, salad, rolls
pot roast, mashed potatoes, peas
tortilla black bean casserole, salad
Olive Garden's minestrone soup, bread, salad
stuffed french bread pizza and salad
garlic dijon dump chicken and strawberry-spinach salad (I'll make 2 and freeze one for later)

Category 2:
turkey-apple meatloaf and sweet potatoes
bbq pork ribs, corn on the cob, cornbread
italian parmesan chicken, green beans, salad
teriyaki salmon and sweet potatoes and rolls
pasta salad with tuna, broccoli, rolls
spaghetti, salad, bread
scrounge (leftovers)
breakfast (eggs, pancakes, fruit, bacon if we have it)

Now, I had several things already on hand (the pasta salad stuff, black beans, pancake mix, bacon, etc.) so that helped. And I only used 4 coupons for a total savings of $1.80 (which is unusual for me - I usually save about 10% but my coupon supplies are running low). So here's the list :

pasta .83
Product 19 cereal 3.51
angel hair pasta .79
life cereal (loss leader) 1.99
life cereal honey (loss leader) 1.99
nilla wafers 2.00
bread 2.04
english muffins 1.95
eggs 1.01
peanut m&ms 1.99(coupon)
plain m&ms 2.49 (coupon)
corn muffin mix .59
shredded wheat cereal 3.07
lime juice .69
oreos 3.07
flour 1.71
pinenuts 1.85
shredded cheese 1.29 (coupon)
shredded mozzerella 2.79 (coupon)
bag of teddy grahams (on sale) 1.00
bag of mini oreos (sale) 1.00
bag nutter butters (sale) 1.00
bag animal cookies (sale) 1.00
dried fruit bits 1.89
corn tortillas .96
corn on cob 1.59
chopped onions .69
cut green beans 1.49
bag chicken breasts frozen 5.99 (2.5# bag - I think I can get it cheaper at Costco)
half and half 1.16
frozen spinach .58
monterey jack cheese 1.49
breadstick dough x 2 @1.29 each
dinner roll dough x 2 @ 1.29
bay scallops (frozen) 3.19
butter salted 2.75
butter unsalted 2.19
ricotta cheese 2.21
frozen green beans with almonds x 2 @1.20
roast 4.29 (2.20 per #)
pepperoni 1.66
salmon 9.55
sweet sausage 2.79
pork country ribs 4.12
ground turkey 2.63
baked beans .86
bbq sauce (loss leader and my coup of the day) .35!!!!! I bought 3. Would have bought more if I had more room.
baking powder 1.30
pasta sauce 1.75
great northern beans .52
mandarin oranges x 2 @ .79
dijon mustard 3.36
picante sauce 1.85
apple cider 2.79
spaghettios x 2 @.89 each
diced tomatoes x 2 @.78 each
kidney beans .62
prune juice 2.41
canteloupe 2.70
zucchini .62
broccoli .36
cauliflower 2.07
strawberries 1# 3.33
sweet potatoes 2.70
apples .72
lemons x 2 .60
carrots .63
salad 1.99
parsley .43
cilantro (gonna start growing this myself) .61
potatoes 1.08
shallots .23
bagged spinach 2.09
green pepper .34
joy dishwashing liquid on sale @ 1.29 (and a coupon)
2 bags birdseed @ 1.56 each
paper towels 1.59
diapers 7.49

Now I will have to go back for milk but we're good on that at least through the weekend. And I'll probably have to grab salad again as well as diapers and PullUps (maybe...dd is down to only wearing them at night). And I'll make a Sam's/Costco run at some point too although there is nothing we NEED from either place.

So $161 for a 2 week span. Once I get my coupon stash back up to where it should be, I can probably knock that down another 10%. I also ordered 2 books that my FrugalFood! friend recommended : Frugal Living for Dummies and Feed Your Family for $12 a Day and hopefully those will help me cut a little more off the food bill.

Around here, the commissary is ESSENTIAL. The Star supermarket that I popped into last week was selling milk for $7.59 a GALLON! I almost had a heart attack right there in the dairy section! On post, milk is $3.25 a gallon for skim and about $4.00 for soy for the kids. We've cut back to drinking it only with breakfast and sometimes dinner and we now drink a LOT more water. We have incorporated at least 2 vegetarian meals in to each week's meals which helps cut down on the grocery cost.

And once we get the garage in order, I'll have shelves on which I can store extras - stuff I find on sale (like bbq sauce for 35 cents a bottle!) or things I buy in bulk at Sam's/Costco. We're also planning on buying a chest freezer so I can stock up on meats and frozen veggies. I also plan to start preparing meals ahead of time and freezing them. "Dump Chicken" is a good example. This week, when I prep 1 meal of dump chicken, I'll prep another and freeze it. Then, all I have to do is yank it out, defrost it, and bake it. Luckily, my family loves chicken.

So there you have it. Probably more than you ever wanted to know.

- hfs


Heather said...

You have no idea how exciting this kind of "talk" is for me LOL. Call me a nerd :P


Anonymous said...

do your children have a milk allergy requiring soy milk? if not, please check with your pediatrician as whole milk or at least 2% is essential to developing children as vitamins are stored and transferred in FAT and strict adherence to low fat or super lowfat diets can lead to vitamin deficiencies in very young children... just sayin'


Wrote this six years ago. Nothing's changed.  One of my favorite movies is 'Bull Durham'. And one of my favorite scenes in ...