April was an odd month. On one hand we ate out more thanks to our travels to Tennessee and the beach, so one could expect a lower grocery bill. On the other hand, we purchased groceries to bring on these trips and invested in a half cow to fill our freezer, so the month’s food cost clearly shot up. I really look forward to the end of the years when I can average it all and see our average monthly and weekly totals!
We went in on the half cow with a colleague of David’s and I call it an “inside job” because we were offered the grass-fed cow purchase through a brother of another work colleague who does it mostly as a hobby. That’s a long winded way of saying that I don’t have a recommendation or hook up for anyone, but if it’s something you are interested in, it’s worth contacting your local farms.
We ended up getting 271 pounds of beef with cuts from filet mignon to pressed burger patties (that we paid a little extra for), to fajita cut meat, ground beef, sirloins, bones for soup and for Finley, and even the organs, heart and liver.
The total cost of all 271 pounds was $1,355, making it $5.00 per pound. I expect this to last us a minimum of 6 months, probably more. The last time we bought half a cow it lasted us at least a year, though we had a toddler and a baby at the time that weren’t eating hefty portions.
Ok, here’s April’s grocery spending breakdown:
Total spent: $2,259.27. I got my Butcher Box delivered at the end of April, so I expect May to be lighter on groceries considering my freezer is now stocked with 250+ pounds of beef, wild salmon, and chicken. However, as a sneak peek at May, I did spend about $150 at Costco on the second day of the month, so who really knows.
Why am I sharing our grocery spending? Mostly because it’s something I want to do for my own curiosity and interest, so I figured if I’m tracking, I should share, mostly because it does do a great job of holding me accountable.
I enjoy reading the feedback, too. It’s intriguing to see the range of responses, from “I could never spend that much” to “how to you keep it so low; I spend at least $400 at Costco every trip.” There are so many factors that play into it and it has had me pondering ways to switch things up.
For example, Laura commented early on on our Nespresso coffee spending and it did make me reconsider. Now I buy whole bean regular and decaf, mix them, and brew a pot in our coffee maker each morning. This leaves the Nespresso pods for afternoon coffees or days when it’s just one of us that wants coffee.
It’s hard for me to balance what I feel is best for our health versus what is best for our budget. I’ve never shied away from owning the fact that we do prioritize good food. I do believe it pays off in the long run for our health, but I’m working on being smarter about how I purchase some items.
I recently bought a 20 lb bag or organic rice from Costco for not much more than the price of a 2 lb bag at the grocery store. Buying in bulk, when it’s possible, certainly appears to make a difference. It’s just figuring out how to store it all!
I also just bought some books from Thriftbooks including The Complete Medicinal Herbal and the well known Ball’s Complete Book of Home Preserving. I’m hoping to play around with some canning this summer and take advantage of the in season produce. I also got Flour, Water, Salt, Yeast from the library and am enjoying the adventure of making my own starter and better understanding bread baking.
I think this has gotten long enough and on a tangent enough for today, but thanks for reading and following along. It’s been fun to share it with you and I’ve enjoyed your thoughts and feedback!