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Thread: average meal price per serving

  1. #1
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    I'm trying to budget and wanted to know what y'all aim for as far as pricing goes. Granted, some meals will cost more and others less, but for your weekly meal budget, what price per serving do you consider good?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    After thinking on this for a few minutes I think 3 to 4 dollars depending on what we have sometimes less sometimes more.

  3. #3
    Moderator QuiltnNan's Avatar
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    i try not to spend more than $2/meal. i remember in college that my DH and i didn't spend more than $20 at the grocery store for the week, and that included his cigs. wow, those were the days

  4. #4
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    After thinking on this for a few minutes I think 3 to 4 dollars depending on what we have sometimes less sometimes more.
    So you spend $3 to $4 per person per meal (on average over the course of several days worth of meals)?

    Thanks!

  5. #5
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qbquilts
    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    After thinking on this for a few minutes I think 3 to 4 dollars depending on what we have sometimes less sometimes more.
    So you spend $3 to $4 per person per meal (on average over the course of several days worth of meals)?

    Thanks!
    Sometimes there are leftovers which gives us an almost free meal add veggies or salad and we are good to go.

  6. #6
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    My DH and I usually get a roasted Chicken (done) for $4.99 and then we have left overs for soup, or stir fry or pot pie! Can't beat that price!

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    There are 3 of us...though I only eat for 1/2 a person(or less)..but I try to keep our meals for the week under $75.00 total! We eat everything fresh, no boxed or frozen meals so that helps alot! This also includes all three meals each day! My DH and son both take their lunches!

  8. #8
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaciqltznok
    There are 3 of us...though I only eat for 1/2 a person(or less)..but I try to keep our meals for the week under $75.00 total! We eat everything fresh, no boxed or frozen meals so that helps alot! This also includes all three meals each day! My DH and son both take their lunches!
    So for just me, that would be about $25 to $30 a week, based your shopping and menus? Or a little over a $1 per meal? That actually is what my budget is going to look like, but I wasn't sure that it would be doable. I recently started Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University and am wanting to pay my student loans off with gazelle intensity and am reevaluating how and where I spend my money. Thanks!

    If you don't mind, I may PM for tips on shopping and menu planning.

  9. #9
    Super Member hopetoquilt's Avatar
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    Look for little other ways to save money b/c it all adds up. I don't use the bag on my lawn mower. No need to buy garbage bags for grass clippings. I cut my hair 2x per year and keep it straight, long, and one length. I wear glasses instead of contacts.

    Go to the grocery store with a set list and don't buy anything but what is on the list. Do NOT buy junkfood just because it is cheap. It will add weight to you, not fill you up (hence you will buy more) and you will be less healthy. Spend enough to eat healthy.

    Eggs and chicken tend to be a cheaper form of protein and are versatile...

  10. #10
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    One thing to take into consideration, is the stuff you buy at the grocery store ,that is not food. Soaps, deoderant, garbage bags, toilet paper, plastic wrap, etc. That kind of stuff can really add up.
    If I take out the non-food items , I can reasonably budget( with out feeling I have gone without) for about $30.00 per week. That all 7 days , 3x per day... and of course the inbetweens and the occasional bone for my fuzzy one.

  11. #11
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    For starters, keep a spending diary for a while.

    It can be a shock when one pays close attention to what was spent and for what!!!

    And like someone else said - itemize what you buy -

    There are three of us living here now - and we all contribute to the total cost.

    One also needs to consider portion sizes. Can you stretch one pound of hamburger into four or more servings? Or does one person gobble up the whole thing?

  12. #12
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hopetoquilt
    Look for little other ways to save money b/c it all adds up. I don't use the bag on my lawn mower. No need to buy garbage bags for grass clippings. I cut my hair 2x per year and keep it straight, long, and one length. I wear glasses instead of contacts.

    Go to the grocery store with a set list and don't buy anything but what is on the list. Do NOT buy junkfood just because it is cheap. It will add weight to you, not fill you up (hence you will buy more) and you will be less healthy. Spend enough to eat healthy.

    Eggs and chicken tend to be a cheaper form of protein and are versatile...
    Thank you. I already do some of these things. I rent, so don't have to worry about outdoor maintenance. I usually get my hair cut once a year and I wear glasses (actually, the last one is a medical necessity - I'm allergic to the preservative that contacts come in and is in most cleansers - I break out in severe contact dermatitis :-)). I'm due for new glasses, but put extra $$$ in my FSA this year to cover it. I hope to make my appointment in the next couple of weeks. I also keep my computer/router/modem, TV, and microwave unplugged when not in use and am very conservative with my heat and A/C.

    I just wasn't sure what a reasonable budget for healthy (ie, non-junk & processed-filled) foods could be for a week's worth of meals.

  13. #13
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lori S
    One thing to take into consideration, is the stuff you buy at the grocery store ,that is not food. Soaps, deoderant, garbage bags, toilet paper, plastic wrap, etc. That kind of stuff can really add up.
    If I take out the non-food items , I can reasonably budget( with out feeling I have gone without) for about $30.00 per week. That all 7 days , 3x per day... and of course the inbetweens and the occasional bone for my fuzzy one.
    So your $30.00 / week is a 1 person (plus fur-baby) food budget? Thanks for sharing your average weekly amount with me.

  14. #14
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearisgray
    For starters, keep a spending diary for a while.

    It can be a shock when one pays close attention to what was spent and for what!!!

    And like someone else said - itemize what you buy -

    There are three of us living here now - and we all contribute to the total cost.

    One also needs to consider portion sizes. Can you stretch one pound of hamburger into four or more servings? Or does one person gobble up the whole thing?
    I have been keeping track of my receipts and spending, though not faithfully, and that is why I wanted to see if my estimated amount for food would actually work. I spend way too much on food and then am gone way to much and don't get to cook it and wind up grabbing takeout for lunch since no cooking means no leftovers.

    thank you!

  15. #15
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    Whenever I need to cut expenses I try to do it on other things, not with food.
    But let me explain- we eat really healthy foods which may cost more but compared to prepared foods, sodas, junk food etc it's probably a lot cheaper. I rarely eat anything that's not made from scratch.
    I look at it as fuel for my body. I'll skimp on something else.

  16. #16
    Moderator Up North's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    Quote Originally Posted by qbquilts
    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    After thinking on this for a few minutes I think 3 to 4 dollars depending on what we have sometimes less sometimes more.
    So you spend $3 to $4 per person per meal (on average over the course of several days worth of meals)?

    Thanks!
    Sometimes there are leftovers which gives us an almost free meal add veggies or salad and we are good to go.
    That amount is for two people iI guess I read it wrong at the beginning so it would be 1.50 to two dollars per serving.

  17. #17
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    Quote Originally Posted by qbquilts
    Quote Originally Posted by Up North
    After thinking on this for a few minutes I think 3 to 4 dollars depending on what we have sometimes less sometimes more.
    So you spend $3 to $4 per person per meal (on average over the course of several days worth of meals)?

    Thanks!
    Sometimes there are leftovers which gives us an almost free meal add veggies or salad and we are good to go.
    That amount is for two people iI guess I read it wrong at the beginning so it would be 1.50 to two dollars per serving.
    Thank you :-).

  18. #18
    Jim
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    I also coupon...only buying what we actually use and need and I save quite a bit with them

  19. #19
    Super Member purplemem's Avatar
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    I go to Walmart (close by) in the mornings about 7 and buy the newly marked down bread and meats. I freeze both and save 20-40% that way.

    I cook everything from scratch. DH and I make a serving for 4 really be for 4, 2 meals for us.

    We eat oatmeal or grits for breakfast. I also shop the local bent n dent store for big savings.

    I make a cake once a week for our snack food. Sometimes a pie.

    I shop the Dollar Tree or Walmart or Dollar Store clearance for all my consumables, shampoo, soap etc. I use shampoo for body wash, shampoo, and liquid hand soap. I buy the moisturizing kinds.

    I think we spend about $1 each for breakfast, $3 each for lunch, and $2 for supper. So we are averaging $12 a day x 30 days or $360 a month. Wow! that's more than I thought...hmm
    that really is true to our spending though. We have fruit 2 or 3 times a day.

    We drink a gallon of milk a week, here it is $4 a gallon.

  20. #20
    Senior Member quilticing's Avatar
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    Oatmeal is my favorite money saver. Real food will be healthier in the long run. Remember "Betty Crocker lied". Processed food is just a money-making gimmick. Your money and health should be the decision maker.

  21. #21
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    Have you taken a look at the 'Everyday' magazine by Rachel Ray? There is a section in there on meals under a certain price per serving. They are delicious and nutritious, and most are under $3 per serving. She gives the recipes, a shopping list, and tips on how to prepare dishes with leftovers. Personally, I spend less than $25 per week on food for myself if I average it out. I do all kinds of things to keep my costs down.

  22. #22
    Senior Member qbquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    Whenever I need to cut expenses I try to do it on other things, not with food.
    But let me explain- we eat really healthy foods which may cost more but compared to prepared foods, sodas, junk food etc it's probably a lot cheaper. I rarely eat anything that's not made from scratch.
    I look at it as fuel for my body. I'll skimp on something else.
    I've already cut most everything else - food is my big budget buster right now and I cook so little (always on the go) that I wasn't sure if I was even being realistic when planning my budget. But thank you.

  23. #23
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    What we do. I dont work, Thank God, but we dont do a lot of other things to compensate for it. We might eat out 3 times a year. I raise my own chickens (eggs and meat) and garden and can like a maniac. Now I know not everyone can do this but my advice that I have seen work. If you want to truly eat healthy, I go to a farmers home, we buy 1/2 of a cow, Yes I know it costs more up front but I am only paying 2.55 a lb for grass fed meat. If I didnt raise chickens I would go find someone that doesn, stop and ask if they sell eggs. You can see the way they raise theirs. Mine, run around w/o a fence, the way chickens should. Leanr to make your own. I make my own mayo. It takes me about 5 mins. In a blender. Done and only 4 ingredients. Just because you get something cheap, doesnt mean you are saving money. You might be headed to the dr and that definately isnt saving money. I buy organic beans and oats by the 25-50 lb bags. Put them in food grade buckets and I am paying maybe $1 a lb for organic. It takes some work but once you get the hang of it, its easy and tastes oh so good.

  24. #24
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by qbquilts
    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    Whenever I need to cut expenses I try to do it on other things, not with food.
    But let me explain- we eat really healthy foods which may cost more but compared to prepared foods, sodas, junk food etc it's probably a lot cheaper. I rarely eat anything that's not made from scratch.
    I look at it as fuel for my body. I'll skimp on something else.
    I've already cut most everything else - food is my big budget buster right now and I cook so little (always on the go) that I wasn't sure if I was even being realistic when planning my budget. But thank you.
    Please understand- we are all on different paths- right now I am able do what I do. My life is probably different from yours.
    I'm not on the go as much as I used to be. I think you're definitely on the right track. What I told you is important in the sense that a lot of people think organic, fresh, etc is so costly. It's not when you look at the whole picture, as others have said. Hope this makes sense and good luck :)
    You sound like a smart young woman to me :thumbup:

  25. #25
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    Best wishes on the Dave Ramsey University. It's an awesome program and gives you all the necessary tools to complete your goals. Good luck.

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