Saturday, January 8, 2011

Cost Break-Down: Spaghetti Supper

I’m still struggling to get our grocery budget under control!  One of the things that is tripping me up is that I don’t know what we usually spend on an average meal at our house.  How can I try to spend less per meal, if I don’t know what I am spending now?  I have been trying to spend less but eat the same!  So in order to help me know which meals cost me more to trade them out with others, I am trying to figure out what some of our favourite suppers cost.

I make spaghetti once a week, because it’s quick, easy and my kids love it. Invariably, when I ask them which suppers they want me to plan on that week, they both say “spaghetti”!!  I use ground deer/moose/elk from the freezer, so to me, this cost doesn’t get included in the meal.  We pay for hunting costs in hunting season, and I don’t factor them into the grocery cost the rest of the year.  I use one can of tomato sauce, to which I add the meat and some spices that my kids like ( cumin and oregano).  I used to add mushrooms, but my kids requested I leave them out, so in trade, we have a spinach salad( spinach leaves, grated carrots and grated cheese with dressing).  Believe it or not, all my kids love spinach!  If I’m really on the ball that day, I make a loaf of bread to go with it.  I buy my spaghetti in those huge no name bags, and last time I made it, I figured out that I use about half the bag.

So here is my cost:
Can of NN tomato sauce :$1.07
Spices :$0.05
Spaghetti Noodles: $2.00
Spinach Salad, all ingredients:$1.50
Loaf of homemade Bread:$1.33

Which means this meal costs a grand total of : $5.95 ! That’s supper for 6-8 people and I usually have enough left-over's for one lunch. That’s pretty amazing!!  I could cut the cost more if I skipped the bread.  If you buy a pound of lean ground beef to add to yours, add $1.78 to that, making for a total of $7.73.

I’d love to know what some of your go-to low cost weekday meals are!

1 comment:

  1. Hey! I've gotten some comments about the cost of my spinch salad, so in case you're wondering how I came up with that number, here's what I did:

    We buy a bag of spinch ( regular, not the baby spinach because it costs less) for $2.59. Because of the small amount that the kids eat, this bag makes us 3 salads.
    2.59/3= $0.86

    I use just a tiny sprinkling of shredded cheese on top, mostly to fool my kids that there are lots of cheese bits in there, I weighed it, 50g. I buy the big brick of cheese (2.27kg) when its on sale for $19.99 so the actual cheese used cost me $0.44

    I had the carrotts from this summer's garden season, so they were litteraly free to me.

    That means the salad I ate last night cost me $1.30. I rounded up to $1.50 to account for the carrot, if you were buying it, and the almost nothing I allow my kids to put on for dressing.

    Common sense would say that if you use more ingredients like cheese or other veggies, or if you make a bigger salad than me, or use the baby spinach, you're specific salad will cost more. There are literally hundreds of variables.

    My cost break down is specific to me, my most recent grocery bill and my portion sizes. Even at that, I never make the salad the exact same way each time I make it.

    Obviously, not EVERY spinach salad in the entire realm of possibilities will cost $1.50.


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