Budget eating challenge

I spend an aweful lot of money on food. Mainly coconut yoghurt, nuts and nut butters, organic berries and meats, and superfoods. Last week I challenged myself to get our food bill down, so here was my thinking

  1. Use everything in the pantry and veggie box before buying more food
  2. Get a large sealable bulk food bucket from the healthfood store so I can clear out the bulk flours and nuts in the freezer to make room for bulk meat purchases
  3. I go a bit easy on the anytime v exercise food and allow myself some more soy products and complex carbs than usual, but still keep sugar to a minimum.

Here’s what I ended up cooking

  • beetroot and mint falafel with quinoa tabouli, baba ghanoush and haloumi
  • scrambled eggs, avocado, sprouts, mushrooms and baked beans
  • portable pot of strawberries, blueberries, pear, banana, coconut yoghurt and super seed museli topped off with almonds, goji berries and bee pollen
  • tuscan baked veggies with spinach and cajun chicken
  • giant omellete with ham, tomato, spinach, onion and cheese
  • avocado, spinach, celery top, beet leaves, parsley, lemon, banana, apple smoothie with hemp protein powder
  • turkey loaf
  • light and fluffy, protein-packed totally delicious paleo pancakes with strawberries and blueberries
  • raw carrot, broccoli stem, apple and mint slaw
  • zucchini fritters with spinach and onion chutney
  • broccoli, carrot, corn, onion, pineapple, cashew, tempeh chili and ginger stirfry
  • spinach, avocado, apple, cashew, currant and chicken salad
  • cashew butter, cacoa and goji berry protein balls
  • apple and almond butter ‘sandwiches’
  • chicken, hommus, avocado and alfalfa nori rolls
  • miso soup with mixed veg, soba noodles and tofu
  • broccoli and lamb teriyaki and honey stirfry
  • kale, blueberry, orange, banana, ginger and hemp protein smoothie
  • sheppard’s pie with cauliflower crust

So now that the pantry is cleared out, and we have no more cheeses, chickpeas or nut butter, I’m going to try The Whole 30. 30 days of absolutely strictly going sugar free (no natural sweetners – honey, maple, dates, stevia and xylitol), grain free, and dairy free – including things used as substitutes. That means no coconut yoghurt, no paleo pancakes, no sugar free carob. So it’s pretty much a month of a veggie, fruit, meat and eggs paleoish detox.

My aim is to hit a balance of 80 per cent fruit and veg, 10 per cent protein (eggs, fish, chicken and some red meat) and 10 per cent fat (nuts and oils). I’m hoping this will be enough to break me of my expensive vices – nut butter, coconut yoghurt, carob, quinoa, and super seed museli. Then after the 30 days I’ll reassess how I feel and hopefully I can go back to my anytime and exercise diet vice free :)

I’ll keep you posted on how I go!

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1 Comment

  1. Sam Johnson - August 28, 2013

    Dave & I had this exact conversation last night! A few days until payday and no more budget so it’s time to get creative! We spend so much on food its ridiculous. Love the ideas you have – as always! :)

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