The $30 Grocery Challenge

Hey y’all! Happy October!

For the last week, I have been trying super hard to create and implement a budget. Cai and I spend so much money without one, and decided to finally get our finances together before something bad happens.

Ever since getting a budgeting app (timely bills) and a financing notebook, things have gotten a little bit easier on the pocket. Seeing where your money is going definitely helps to save money. The app I use tracks expenses, all bills and their due dates, as well as our personal budget. The link to it is below.

Timely Bills

Today’s post is about a challenge that I participated in this past weekend. The $30 grocery challenge is a hard, but rewarding process. It involves meal planning for a week, and creating a shopping list from it that costs under $30. How? Taking advantage of coupons and weekly sales that grocery chains throw at customers.

My designated day for the challenge to take place was Saturday 09/29. It took me about 2 days to fully get prepared to go shopping, and I still was not truly ready the morning of. Here’s a view at what those 2 days looked like.

Meal Planning

This is the hardest part for me because I never know what to cook. For this challenge, my dinner menu for this week is:

  • Monday: Cream of chicken over rice with green beans and cornbread
  • Tuesday: Spaghetti with meat and corn
  • Thursday: Hamburger helper’s 3 cheese lasagna with green beans
  • Friday: Meatloaf with cabbage and biscuits
  • Sunday: Fried chicken, mashed potatoes with gravy, corn, and toast

My Shopping List (not including items I already had in my pantry):

  • Ground turkey
  • Green beans
  • 2 cans of corn
  • Chicken legs
  • Cabbage
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Spaghetti sauce
  • Cornbread mix
  • Biscuits
  • Bread
  • Milk
  • Cereal
  • Eggs

The experience

First of all, Cai accompanied me on this trip, which was so wonderful and helpful.

I wrote that I was going to go to three stores, but ended up only visiting two. The original three were Aldi, Food Lion, and Walmart. The sales at Aldi ended up being so great, and I could not pass them up, so I bought almost all of my list from there. The other place, Wal-Mart, had my other needs for the perfect price. I walked out of the challenge, having spent only $27 total, which was an amazing feeling. There really is no feeling like succeeding, especially at something you struggle with.

I felt really good about this challenge. I felt like I was more in control of my money than I have been lately. This was a fun and creative way to introduce my mind to the concept of financing. I would definitely recommend this challenge to any of you who are new to budgeting, or even people who have been doing this for a while and just want to see how good you’ve gotten.

Thanks for reading, you guys!