T Nation

You Spend HOW Much on Food?

How many times have we heard/said that statement? Eating right can be costly, especially if you do not have the know-how for cutting down those costs. What I propose is that anyone who reads this thread post a few things about their food consumption/stats.

  • Male or Female?
  • What state you are in (cut, bulk, maint)?
  • How much do you typically spend on groceries in one month?
  • How much do you spend on restaurants/fast food/take out in one month?
  • What tips have you found that work for cutting costs?
  • How much do you spend on supplements per month (average bulk items across their usable period)?

Thank you in advance and any other aspects you would like to add will be appreciated by everyone :slight_smile: .

Are you writing a report?

-Male
-Bulkish

  • $400ish
  • $50 all fast food mainly PWO on ME days
  • I cook almost all of my own meals, all i do is make plently of extras and that’s my lunches for the next few days. I try to buy organic as much as possible.

~Male
~Maintain/Bulk soon
~$400/mo
~$20 or less on outside food. I’m the “healthy guy” at work, and a loser outside so I don’t go out to eat much haha
~Same as Crew Pierce; I cook all my own stuff.

I cook as much chicken/meat as I can on one day of the week to save time, you’d be suprised at how much time it’ll save.

Please post if ya’ll got ways of saving $$$!

-Male
-Maintaining or Slightly below
-$350
-Same as B rock, under $20. I can’t even remember eating out this past month.
-Same as all of the above, I cook and prepare all my own meals.
I try to buy in bulk if and when I can to cut some costs, but I don’t sweat it too much.

  • Male
  • Slight cut at the moment
  • Around 400
  • Less than 50, sometimes 0
  • BUY IN BULK! I shop almost exclusivly at costco now. Saving time is just as important IMO I cook all my meat twice a week in bulk and hard boil 36 eggs at a time, etc.
  • male

  • maintain

  • $500 canadian (have gone as low as $340 with same macro/mirco numbers, only with cheaper cuts of meat and less interesting fruits and veggies and as high as $1000 when i tried eating only game meat for a month)

  • $20-150, depends on friends and how much i need a break, when cutting, at least 1 sashimi meal, i sashimi/sushi meal and 2 times 2 slices of pizza, this way i limit cheat foods to basically 3 opportunities and get to see how badly i can make the all-you-can-eat sushi place regret having multiple types of sashimi on their menu

  • buying in bulk works, as does cooking, i can’t believe most people don’t do this, hunting, fishing, buy a quarter cow at once - bulk buying to the extreme, shopping at fruit and vegetable markets instead of grocery stores for fruits and veggies will usually save you anywhere from a third to half the cost

i think supplement budget would be an interesting thing to add to the list, so here it is:

  • $100 (can go up to 400 if i am self-testing a stack or trying to gain or lose) fish oil, ZMA, and creatine are part of food budget, not this $100 - this is usually Metabolic Drive, Surge, Beta 7, BCAA, CLA, borage oil, and something like Alpha Male, HOT-ROX Extreme, Se7en, caffiene-free Spike, and Power Drive

Any one ever had a “food service”

I had one where you got to choose a shit load of meats and chicken by the pound, with or with out a freezer, and a shit load of veggies, with a few turkeys and alot of other boxed items,

it was through a place called shasta prime !!! (i think?)

i had something like 75 lbs of chicken 75lbs of various steaks and burgers, and it was actually only like $250 a month, but it was for like 10-12 months,

the chicken was froze in a way that it almost lasted for 10-12 months in the freezer,

anyway i now spend about 400 a month for myself and my wife!!

supps are another story!!

I would add is that eggs are cheaper than steak - protein doesnt have to be expensive. Good quality meat can be expensive. I think it’s worth looking for a better quality milk above the standard supermarket stuff though.

Supplements are where money can run out. I saw so many ‘latest things’ from years ago that weren’t worth it that i find it difficult to trust the industry now. The science is often incomplete and they’re expensive too. I’ll stick to creatine and good protein powder plus quality fish oil and vitamins for now, and buy them when they’re on special offer!

[quote]eengrms76 wrote:
Are you writing a report?[/quote]

No, this one is not for a report. Just curious to see what everyone spends and also if any great money saving tips people have not thought of generally have popped up.

[quote]ubl0 wrote:
when cutting, at least 1 sashimi meal, i sashimi/sushi meal and 2 times 2 slices of pizza, this way i limit cheat foods to basically 3 opportunities and get to see how badly i can make the all-you-can-eat sushi place regret having multiple types of sashimi on their menu[/quote]

Amazing! I have never ever found an all you can eat sushi place around me. I think that would be heaven :-).

Great idea, I have added this to the list of questions. Perfect addition!

It sounds like buying in bulk is the way to go for everyone. Personally, as soon as I get the opportunity I am investing in a chest/stand alone freezer to do just that. Also, the fruit/vegetable tip at the farmer’s market is something I am going to have to check out.

Thanks for all the responses thus far and keep ‘em comin’.

I think if you don’t ever eat out you get to spend whatever the hell you want on food. Buy whatever convienience foods you want (bagged salads, veggies that microwave in their own bag, etc) - it works out in your favor.

Here’s a good money saver, but it may not be available everywhere-
There is a herd culling program to take down the local deer population. Since you can’t technicaly buy the deer, you pay the processing fee and they give yu the meat.

It works out to a dollar a pound. This winter I got 150 lbs.= $150.00. Not bad for fresh venison.

Then there’s gardening. If you plant a good variety of your favorites and time the planting for an early and late yield, you can just about eliminate produce costs from summer to fall. I also like to forrage for wild mushrooms. The books to find and identify them are a few bucks, but throughout the year you can get maybe 50 lbs of shrooms that retail at up to $30.00/lb for free.

Those are some tasty money savers.

What do I spend? Nearly $400, mostly because I spend alot on Keifer. Yummy

Male
Bulk (5000 calories)
£200-240 per month absolute max
I don’t take any supplements except a protein blend I have custom made in bulk (25% milk protein, 25% casein, 25% whey isolate, 25% whey concentrate). That’s included in my monthly price, 60g per day.
I buy all organic, free range meat, dairy and vegetables.

I don’t drink, smoke or do drugs, so I don’t feel bad or odd about spending above average on food. It’s my thing. And I can nearly squat 400lb now, whereas it was 200lb 2 years ago, so I don’t feel like I’m wasting my time/money. I haven’t had one trip to the doctors since starting eating properly.

I know girls eating 1000 calories per day who spend more than me on food in a month.

When I’ve finished law school and in proper employment, I’m just going to allow myself £100 a week to spend on food, then go wild…

[quote]wsk wrote:
Male
Bulk (5000 calories)
£200-240 per month absolute max
I don’t take any supplements except a protein blend I have custom made in bulk (25% milk protein, 25% casein, 25% whey isolate, 25% whey concentrate). That’s included in my monthly price, 60g per day.
I buy all organic, free range meat, dairy and vegetables.

I don’t drink, smoke or do drugs, so I don’t feel bad or odd about spending above average on food. It’s my thing. And I can nearly squat 400lb now, whereas it was 200lb 2 years ago, so I don’t feel like I’m wasting my time/money. I haven’t had one trip to the doctors since starting eating properly.

I know girls eating 1000 calories per day who spend more than me on food in a month.

When I’ve finished law school and in proper employment, I’m just going to allow myself £100 a week to spend on food, then go wild…
[/quote]

this is a very interesting post. shows that you can indeed eat decent for a reasonable amount of money even where food costs a little more than north america.

also highlights the fact that many people can spend as much and get much less in return, though i am willing to bet that with all the calories you don’t see them girls consuming, it will be closer to 1500 kcal. sounds like you already eat better than most, only place to go is to make kings look like chumps.

gswork: right on with the eggs, i can’t believe i missed that one. i spend a little more on eggs and get the omega3 ones, i figure it costs $1.80 for 6 eggs vs maybe $1 if i bought normal ones bulk, so not worth the dollar a day for me considering the slightly worse fat profile, but for others it could be a way to eek out a tin of Metabolic Drive a month.

as for your supplement stack, you have all the bases covered, really the only performance enhancing supp that could pay off is maybe beta7.

for the OP, this is an excellent thread idea. it really brings home the point of budget constraints and how to optimize one’s purchases. often seeing cases that differ from one’s own helps you see things you may have missed or at least see the problem in a different light.

thankfully in the vancouver area we have access to the freshest seafood and prices are kept reasonable by the stiff competition. this means $25 all-you-can-eat usually has at least 5 types of sashimi, beef tataki, and japanese BBQ.

for all in vancouver area who have not been to richmond sushi or top gun in new westminster, well now you know my gluttony haunts. both these places have all-you-can-eat or a-la-carte.

other fine establishments are KI sushi, hayashi sushi, and paradise sushi in new westminster (on average, new westminster has the highest level of sushi as small places that sell predominantly california rolls don’t really do well while the places with selection do, as opposed to vancouver where although there are high-end places, by proportion there are a lot of little roll stands that don’t sell sashimi).

for vancouver, one of my favorites is kits sushi on yew by the beach, octopus garden between kits beach and burrard bridge, and nikko on robson downtown. anyhow, i will stop before i get more off-topic.

This is not giving me an optimistic outlook for college in 3 weeks when I’m fending for myself. 400 a month strikes me as an awful lot of money for food each month. About how much food do you generally get for that? Lbs of meat, vegetables etc. I have a feeling I will be drinking a lot of milk to try to make up for it.

I might spend less sometimes I don’t know
I buy pretty much the same stuff everytime and shop pretty much exclusivly at costco.

this is about 1 weeks worth of food, some lasts more like 10 days than 7
3 lb tubs of cottage cheese(4) a little over 4 bucks a piece
4 cartoons (18) of the omega 3 eggs 2.50 a cartoon or so
7lbs of chicken breasts or ground beef (2.99 a lb)
4lb bag of frozen blueberries around 12 bucks
two 5lb bags of frozen veggies around 5 bucks a piece
5lb bags of oatmeal
12 apples
12 cans of pineapple chunks
other random stuff
when bulking I spend a good amount of $$ on RAW milk

You can see I live on the “wild side” LOL

If you don’t eat out and don’t spend a bunch of money on alchohal and stuff you will still be spending less money than your friends.

[quote]NAUn wrote:
This is not giving me an optimistic outlook for college in 3 weeks when I’m fending for myself. 400 a month strikes me as an awful lot of money for food each month. About how much food do you generally get for that? Lbs of meat, vegetables etc. I have a feeling I will be drinking a lot of milk to try to make up for it.[/quote]

I’m on the same boat. My plans are to hit the local Costco or Sam’s Club and buy large quantities of ground beef chuck, jumbo eggs, oatmeal, rice, all the goodies. Buying in bulk will save your wallet.

  • Wife, Brother, Myself
  • Maintain, Fat Loss, AD
  • $500
  • $100 at most (I eat steaks and vegggies when we go out)
  • Same as everyone else, buy in bulk, only buy what you need, don’t buy junk food obvisouly
  • $9 Power Drive (lasts 2 months), $18 ZMA, $3 Creatine (lasts long time), $48 10lb tub of Whey iso/hydro (Cytosport, feeds all three for over one month), $30 MD (lasts longer than a month, eat mostly whole food) Total: approx. $100 (for three people).

And every once in while I’ll drop some $$ on supps, that I want to try, or for some special reason.

[quote]true2paintball wrote:
How many times have we heard/said that statement? Eating right can be costly, especially if you do not have the know-how for cutting down those costs. What I propose is that anyone who reads this thread post a few things about their food consumption/stats.

  • Male or Female?
  • What state you are in (cut, bulk, maint)?
  • How much do you typically spend on groceries in one month?
  • How much do you spend on restaurants/fast food/take out in one month?
  • What tips have you found that work for cutting costs?
  • How much do you spend on supplements per month (average bulk items across their usable period)?

Thank you in advance and any other aspects you would like to add will be appreciated by everyone :slight_smile: .[/quote]

-male

-Texas, Maintain

-approx. $300

-approx. $200

-I don’t really worry about cutting costs. But buy store brands over name brands for one, go to discount stores, look for sales…

-I probably spend about $50 a month on supps. I try to meet most needs with real food.