How Much Do You Spend a Week on Groceries?

Updated on March 17, 2012
A.B. asks from Pittsburgh, PA
29 answers

We're just taking a look at our budget and noticed that our grocery bills have gone up even though we aren't really buying more. I know that's to be expected, all things considered, and I do feel that we do very well eating the way we do - mostly whole foods - but it would be very helpful to have a broader perspective. Usually, we'll get a big order from Trader Joes that lasts 2-3 weeks and supplement with staples from Target, etc weekly. All in all, I'm thinking it comes down to a little over $100 / week for a family of 3 and am curious to see how that compares and where we can be doing better.

Thanks for your input!

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C.S.

answers from Las Vegas on

I just noticed Fresh and Easy posts a meal on their website with the cost. So this week was chicken fajitas/serves 4/$4. Chicken + Onion + Peppers + Tortillas. They priced it with their $2.50 sliced onion and pepper, so I know it would be even cheaper. Freshandeasy.com Actually it was on my email from them.

2 moms found this helpful
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J.B.

answers from Boston on

Family of 6, $150 - $200 a week. That's with traveling 20 minutes and bypassing my local stores to go shopping at the grocery store from hell (Market Basket for anyone in New England). Worst store ever but the savings are worth the aggravation.

I go to BJs 4 times a year and stock up on razors, shaving cream, TP, paper towels etc. That's usually $100 (on top of the food I'm buying for whatever party/holiday is coming up).

I also allow each of the 4 kids to buy 10 school lunches a month at a cost of about $25 per month per kid. Without those, it would add about $20 per week to the bill.

Additionally, my excessive spender husband frequently stops at the grocery store and spends $30-$50 at a time on convenience foods because he's too lazy to cook something. He probably does this once a week, adding $100-$200 of totally unnecessary spending to the grocery bill.

1 mom found this helpful
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M.M.

answers from Philadelphia on

For a family of 8, with twins in diapers, we average $350 including toiletries. We buy raw milk from PA @ $8. a gallon (7-8 gals. weekly) and coffee from the health food store. Sometimes, it jumps over 350. We also homeshool, so we eat 3 meals daily at home mostly ~ snacks too. I am amazed, once again, at how much people save. I keep forgetting that I have this big family and need to buy more bulk. I finally stopped buying a small jar of peanut butter! :D

1 mom found this helpful

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I.G.

answers from Seattle on

It depends, I think if I would average it over a month it would be about $100 a week (including things like toiletries and such). I typically spend about $75 at the grocery store each week and $100 at Costco every other week.

I LOVE Trader Joes, but have found that a lot of the things I buy there I can live without AND I end up making a lot of impulse buys. Now I only go there once in a blue moon for very specific items (since money is a bit tighter this year).
We are also a family of three.

1 mom found this helpful
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E.B.

answers from Beaumont on

We spend $550 per month for a family of 4 including pet food, paper towels etc. It's pretty tight though, not a penny left unspent.

1 mom found this helpful
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M.C.

answers from Detroit on

Wow, you are doing great! Average for us 4 is about $250 per week and that's with a 2 year old who is still in diapers and uses wipes. We eat pretty healthy too. I don't buy soda, liquor or cigs.

1 mom found this helpful

C.M.

answers from Washington DC on

$100 a week is pretty good! We are a family of 4 and we spend around $150 a week

1 mom found this helpful

T.F.

answers from Dallas on

I spend over $100 a week, family of 3 here. I am not a couponer,,, time=$ and my time is more valuable.

I shop at Market Street which is a great grocery (not cheap) with quality produce, etc. I am there daily getting fresh veggies and produce.

I only buy my meats from my local butcher. He carries the highest quality meats which are the same quality you get when going to a 5 star restaurant. I go about once every other month and spedn about $300 on ground beef, home made Hot Italian sausages, chicken, pork and for the msot part, steaks. We eat a lot of steaks.

I go to Costco about once every 4-6 months and will spend at least $600 stocking up on tp, paper towels, canned goods, etc.

We use quality foods and will not skimp on quality or go cheap.

1 mom found this helpful
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A.V.

answers from Washington DC on

The answer will vary widely on the region. I moved here and my groceries (for one single person) doubled. I was spending $80-100 for myself.

We spend between $150 and $400 a week ($400 being infrequent but we have hit it), depending on if we are stocking up and how many of the 5 (basically 4 adults and one small child) of us are home. This includes all toiletries, paper products and most of our cat supplies (some things we get at a supplies-only pet store). In season, we grow a lot of our veg, but in the winter a good chunk of our shopping is fresh fruit and veg. I coupon a little, but not as much as I possibly could. We also shop at Giant where locally you can earn gas points. Most of the time our bills are comparable and Giant often carries all we need in one shot vs having to go to several stores. I like to only shop once a week. If I fill in during the week, I'll shop other places for staples like milk and bread. There is a Costco opening up near us, so we may get a membership there for some of our non-perishables.

1 mom found this helpful
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A.H.

answers from Chicago on

We spend about $300 a week for groceries. I buy a lot of organic food and we do buy a bottle or 2 of wine a week also.

1 mom found this helpful

L.M.

answers from New York on

We spend $200 a week on groceries. This includes paper goods, laundry detergent, dish soap and dog food for 2 dogs. We're a family of 5. The baby is pretty cheap though as he's still nursing and only eats a little bit of food and I make my own baby food. But 2 kids in school end up being pricey, making lunches etc. We do not buy organic food, but do buy a ton of fresh fruit and veggies. I usually do big food shopping every 3 weeks or so and supplement in between with smaller shopping.

1 mom found this helpful

M.L.

answers from Houston on

Approx $200 for a family of 4 and a dog, that includes toiletries (shampoo/toilet paper/detergent...) I don't buy a lot of processed foods, no sodas, rarely junk food.

1 mom found this helpful
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B..

answers from Dallas on

We spend 300 a month for a family of 3. If something is on a great sale, I will buy a lot extra, so it can push it over every once in a while.
It actually breaks down like this monthly:
Fresh produce $60 (we get that from a coop, so we get a TON for that)
Meat - $60 (Also from a coop from local farms, so again we get more)
Grocery - 120
Paper/cleaning/toiletries - 60

1 mom found this helpful
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R.J.

answers from Seattle on

This comes up from time to time, and the answers are VERY regional.

I spent $600 per month (set in stone budget) for a family of 3, but only by shopping at 5 stores to get the best prices.
_________________________________

Milk = $4 per HALF gallon, unless it's TraderJoes, or Whole foods... and then it's $2 per HALF gallon.

Cereal = $5 per box, unless mega sale happens for $3

Bread = $4 per loaf, unless it's safeway/QFC storebrand for $1
a
Lunchmeat = $11 per pound ... well, that's at it's "cheapest"

Chicken breast = $9 per pound

..... etc. But I can drive a few hundred miles and prices are cut in half or less. TOTALLY REGIONAL

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B.B.

answers from New York on

It depends on if you live in a City and what part of the country you live in. I spend about 100 dollars a week on just food and beverages. But then there is cat food/litter, razors/shaving supplies, detergent/cleaning, paper products, medicine, shampoo and hair products, makeup, ect. So that probably comes to about 15 - 20 dollars a week.

One and Done...you spend 150 dollars a MONTH including everything???

J.U.

answers from Washington DC on

I wish we could spend less on groceries but, that would mean we would have to give up a lot of the fresh foods we eat. It is amazing how much that all adds up.
I am pregnant and my hubby doesn't drink, neither of us smoke. We have one son who is 6 and we try to pack snacks and lunches every day. We spend about 200$ per week. It kills me to swipe that check card every time. I had to buy meats and laundry detergent along with a few other items that are usually once a month or every other month purchase and I spent 300$ this time. I try to use coupons and shop for the deals but, I don't get to go to 2-3 places everytime I shop to get them all.
I have to agree with a lot of the posters, it's definately location that factors in as well.

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A.C.

answers from Savannah on

For our family of 4, I spend an AVERAGE of $140/week, but that includes household goods (detergents, etc) and my 2 year old still has diapers/wipes.

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☆.A.

answers from Pittsburgh on

Probably about $150/month--family of 3--everything (HBA, detergents, etc.)

C.O.

answers from Washington DC on

we spend about $100 a week for all things - not just food, but paper towels, toilet paper, cleaners, etc. for a family of 4 with one dog.

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A.C.

answers from Atlanta on

Family of four, we spend about $170-$200 a week, but we eat mostly whole foods, and almost all of our produce and milk is organic.

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M.G.

answers from Seattle on

We spend about $150 weekly for a family of four with one still in diapers/wipes/special [email protected]____.com as well as pullups/wipes and snacks for the preschool classroom once a month. This typically includes things we wouldn't normally purchase for instance today we bought two pedometers.

E.A.

answers from Erie on

We spend about $100/week for a family of 6.

C.W.

answers from Pittsburgh on

This is so hard because I have two picky eaters my hubby is one, and we share food cost with my mom (we live next door) she normally buys most of the food there is 3 adutls there. Food prices in general have gotten way out of hand. I buy store brand things for most things and dollar store for some other things. I buy brand name diapers Pampers Cruisers because they are the absolute best and yesterday actually a 100 pack cost me $30! And the other name brand thing I buy is laundry soap which is tide bc my hubby is allergic to most other brands. It is nice now that my son is off of formula and eating foods we eat. But I have found myself traveling a little farther for the discount food stores like Bottom Dollar and Aldis to get deals on fresh produce and other things. I try coupons but honestly the coupons out there on things I personally don't use or technically need, i usually end up with 2-5 coupons out of the book because there really isn't many. Good Luck if you find good short cuts let us know.

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J.L.

answers from St. Cloud on

I have a family of 3, if an 11 month old with a tiny stomach counts :P We try to spend $50 a week on groceries. We do use a few different charities to help though. For another couple months I qualify for food from Salvation Army since I'm a nursing mom of a 6+ month old baby. I spend one morning a month going to this Ruby's Pantry thing where I pay $15 for $50-100 worth of random assortment of food. Also, we use WIC for the baby's food and myself since I'm pregnant. With these generous donations, we save probably $200 easily.

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S.H.

answers from Honolulu on

I am in Hawaii... it is expensive.
What you are spending, is really not much, to me. Being I am in my location and the prices are a lot different.

For 1 week of groceries: ours are about $200/week. This is not counting, the runs to the market in between, to get what has run out.
This is typical.
I have a family of 5.

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K.G.

answers from Fort Wayne on

well I would have to say we are maybe $500 a month. I will do about every 5 weeks Sams and thats usually around $250 and thats if we need things like paper products, blades, and pull ups (night time). Then it might be $150/200. I usually do around $75/100 at the grocery store weekly, but not on a Sams week. I like to buy in bulk so if they have the 10/10 sale I will buy, then my bill will be lower if all I have to get is bread and milk and maybe lunch meat.

M.L.

answers from Erie on

I try to stick to about $150 a week, family of 4 with 1 in diapers still. I shop at Aldi's for staples every week (milk, bread, eggs, sugar, etc.) and Wegmans for the rest. I buy meat from a local store known for their excellent prices on meat so I buy in bulk about once a month and freeze.

I find that planning meals for the week before I shop really helps me to save money because I'm not impulse buying and am only getting what i need.

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J.S.

answers from Los Angeles on

Location. Location. We spend about 400-500 week for 3. It's mostly whole foods and we do live at the beach so more $$$$ it seems.

K.G.

answers from Boca Raton on

I spend about 100 per week (on the weeks I need toiletries, a little more)... 4 in our house..

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