BudgetPaleo

This Week’s Menu

Monday

Monday was a holiday, so we treated it like a Sunday and ate out.

Breakfast: Out

Lunch: Out

Dinner: Out

Tuesday

Breakfast: Green smoothie

Lunch: Roast chicken + leftovers

Dinner: Paleo teriyaki skirt steak with grilled shishito peppers

Extras: Vegan cheese ball + chili-dusted baked tortillas & chili-lime cantaloupe spears for book club

Wednesday

Breakfast: Green smoothie

Lunch: Coleslaw mix + roast chicken + cherry tomatoes + grapes + balsamic vinegar

Dinner: Pork chops with Spicy Thai Broccoli Slaw (recipe here)

Thursday

Breakfast: Green smoothie

Lunch: More of the same from yesterday, with added sunflower seeds

Dinner: I had my very own version of Chopped going on this night – The grocery store didn’t have everything for the dish I wanted to make (beef samosas in rice paper wraps), and I didn’t want to just make that because I want to try again next week, so I improvised with what was in my fridge and made a springy dish with meatballs, spinach, peas and preserved lemon (recipe coming soon).

Friday

Breakfast: Green smoothie

Lunch: The last of the roast chicken + Thai broccoli slaw

Dinner: Takeout for the hubby + some hot bar meat & veggies for me, grabbed on the way home after yoga

Sunday

Breakfast: Out

Lunch: Out

Dinner: Out

 

This Week’s Grocery List

Olive oil, 1 liter ($7.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Unsweetened shredded coconut ($1.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Boneless center cut pork chops ($6.62 @ Trader Joe’s)
Raw cashews ($6.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Corn tortillas ($1.49 @ Trader Joe’s)
Shishito peppers, 6oz. ($2.29 @ Trader Joe’s)
Grass fed ground beef, 1 lb. ($7.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Cantaloupe spears ($3.69 @ Trader Joe’s)
Bagged spinach ($2.29 @ Trader Joe’s)
Flank steak ($13.76 @ Trader Joe’s)
Garlic, 3 oz. ($1.49 @ Trader Joe’s)

Smoothie Supplies

Ginger ($1.39 @ Trader Joe’s)
Zico Natural coconut water ($3.69 @ Trader Joe’s)
4 Apples ($3.16 @ Trader Joe’s)
1 lb. limes ($2.29 @ Trader Joe’s)
2 Avocados ($2.98 @ Trader Joe’s)
Bagged kale (2) ($4.58 @ Trader Joe’s)
Bagged spinach ($2.29 @ Trader Joe’s)

Impulse Buys

Speculoos cookie butter ice cream, 1 quart ($4.49 @ Trader Joe’s)
Non-dairy chocolate coconut milk ice cream, 1 pint ($3.49 @ Trader Joe’s)
Roasted chicken breast ($6.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Organic broccoli slaw, 12oz. ($1.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Roasted plantain chips ($1.69 @ Trader Joe’s)
Smoked paprika ($1.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Grass fed ground beef, 1 lb. ($7.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Fleur de sel caramel sauce ($3.49 @ Trader Joe’s)
Coconut milk ($0.99 @ Trader Joe’s)
Heirloom mini tomatoes, 1 lb. ($3.49 @ Trader Joe’s)
Old Amsterdam gouda ($7.19 @ Trader Joe’s)
Thai lime & chili cashews ($6.99 @ Trader Joe’s)

Items That Were On The List But TJ’s Did Not Have

I had originally planned to make cauliflower crust stromboli this week, but TJ’s did not have cauliflower. Which knocked: cauliflower, mozzarella, tomato sauce, and pizza toppings off my list. I had also wanted to make a collard green salad one night, but no collards were to be found. And the samosas were supposed to be wrapped in rice paper instead of loose. I also needed nutritional yeast for a vegan cheese ball I made for book club, but that was a bust as well.

Budget Breakout

This week, I spent $126.75; $26.75 over budget. This week was fairly ridiculous, both in the planning and the shopping. I over-planned dinners (I forgot that Monday was a holiday when planning last week) and then went a little crazy with the impulse shopping at Trader Joe’s. Hey, I was excited – I haven’t been actual grocery shopping since it was last not freezing outside. And I had my DH with me to help carry groceries back, which totally added to the ‘I can buy all the things’ mentality. Plus, I was hungry. Never a good plan at the grocery store. But on the plus side, I have lots of leftovers for next week – and the start of this year’s CSA is imminent.

 

Leftovers From This Week

At the end of the week, I have burger patties, carrots and ground beef left over. I need to incorporate these items into my menu for next week.

Think eating healthfully is too expensive for you? Think again. According to the USDA, to ensure a nutritious diet as of December 2014, a family of two aged 19-59 years should spend between $388.90 and $776.10 on food per month, or $89.80 – $179.30 per week. Source 

For my family of two adults, I spend roughly $400 a month on groceries or $100 a week – and we eat well. Not caviar and lobster well, but I do manage to serve a predominately paleo diet with little to no processed foods, and I get to throw in a few luxuries here and there (like expensive snacks for the hubbs and the occasional ridiculously expensive bag of coffee). We even manage to buy “good” meat (grass fed beef and free-range chicken) most of the time – and I make this budget work even on the weeks we pay for convenience by getting delivery groceries. I make: 10 breakfasts, 5 lunches, and 10 dinners a week – plus enough snacks to satisfy and fuel two active adults.

I’m hoping that this series will help shed a little light on the day-to-day things a “paleo” person really eats — and how that way of eating can work on a budget. I want to nudge anyone sitting on the fence right over the edge by showing that it *can* be done and that you don’t just eat meat, meat, meat and more meat.