Monday, June 14, 2010

The Budget Challenge

Over the past few months, I’ve developed a habit of popping in and out of the supermarket several times a week, picking up extra ingredients for recipes I want to try. Since I end up spending more this way, I need to try and be a little more organised.

There's also the small matter of a fast-approaching trip to Canada. Since I still have a number of items to tick off my ‘stuff I need for Canada’ list, I’ve decided to liberate some of my usual grocery budget for use on other things.

With the above objectives in mind, I’ve set myself a challenge: I intend to feed myself for the next two weeks on a budget of $25.

That’s right: $25 for two weeks, three meals a day.

That said, I won’t be buying absolutely everything I need with my $25. I’ll also be depending on supplies from my freezer and pantry. The point is, I’ve got $25 to spend on groceries, and that’s all I’m buying until the 28th.

There’ll be a certain amount of substituting ingredients and doing without, but I think I’ve planned pretty well. I am, in fact, in better shape than I’d planned, because I still have quite a bit of leftover chicken creole – I didn’t expect it to be Saturday before I got around to making it. I’ve frozen the leftovers in portions for use next week.

So what have I bought with my $25? Well, I've shopped around a bit, and so far I've spent $22.83:

7 apples $2.63 (The Funky Pumpkin)
6 onions $1.50 (The Funky Pumpkin)
5 bananas $2.07 (The Funky Pumpkin)
12 potatoes $3.15 (The Funky Pumpkin)
1 small pumpkin $0.69 (The Funky Pumpkin)
3 pears $0.76 (The Funky Pumpkin)
2 carrots $0.69 (The Funky Pumpkin)
200g sausage meat $1.00 (Cross Bros’ Butchery)
1 can kidney beans $1.69 (Pak N Save)
2 bacon bones $1.89 (Pak N Save)
1 packet yoghurt mix $2.89 (Pak N Save)
7 precooked sausages $3.87 (Pak N Save)

Which means I have $2.17 (or $2.20, rounding to the nearest 10 cents) left over. I'm holding on to this for now, but I expect I will probably end up taking it to Bin Inn to top up my stocks of rolled oats. We'll see how my current supplies hold out.

So that's it, really. I'm quite confident I can make it - with my trusty Edmonds book to help me along, of course! If you're not convinced, keep reading.


  1. This is very impressive, you could teach budgeting next.

  2. Hah they'd all walk out en masse as soon as I started saying things like "beer is not an unavoidable expense"


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