Blissful and Domestic - Creating a Beautiful Life on Less: Have you grocery shopped this month?

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Have you grocery shopped this month?


So have you? Done your grocery shopping that is? I just did mine today and boy am I tired. Shopping days are definitely tiresome, but thankfully I don't have to attempt this again for another 31 days. Thank the heavens! A few asked if I would post each month on what I shopped for and maybe highlight a few tips or tricks when it comes to stocking up on staples. Well as always, you ask and I deliver:)

If you are new to Blissful and Domestic, see how I cut our grocery bill in half here.  

I started out my shopping by meal planning for the month and writing everything down. I am old school and still love writing everything down with pen and paper. I am more at home with my notebook than my laptop. Call me crazy, but I am :) Anyways, once I planned my meals, I consulted my pantry. I looked at what I was running low on and what I would definitely need for my next month of meals. My Monthly Pantry Staples List was a HUGE help. You can find it here in an easy printable format. Once my list was done, I was off to the store. I brought my adds. This was just in caseWinco did not offer the cheaper price. It ended up they beat out all the other stores this month. Winco basically rocks my grocery shopping world! I spent the majority of my grocery money there, but left $50 for a quick run to Costco. I desperately needed to stock up on my baking supplies. So after Winco, I made a beeline for Costco. 30 minutes later and I was on the way home.

Here is the breakdown:

Total Time Shopping: 3 hours (including travel time)

Money Spent: $318.50

I went on a day when my hubby could be home with the kids. This is so critical to my money saving. It takes a lot of planning, thinking, comparing prices and such in my head. I am thankful for a husband who knows this and helps when our monthly shopping comes around.

This month I stocked up on:

Dried Fruit
Craisins and Raisins bought at Costco
These are great for homemade trail mix and yummy 
muffins and breads. Recipes coming soon

Bought a 50lb bag for under $14. 
This will last about 3 months

 Bread Making Supplies 
(a post on this coming soon)
Wheat Germ, Flax Seed, and Gluten
Will last about 2 months

Chocolate Chips
I buy one huge bag at Costco for about $11. Definitely a splurge baking item, 
but the bag will last all month. I use these in muffins, yummy sweet breads, and 
cookies/desserts for the month.

Hamburger buns and hot dog buns
I bought one bag of each, at Costco, for under $3 a bag. I separated the packages into groups of 4. 
I now have buns for 8 different meals. These are perfect when I don't feel like 
making homemade ones.

6 gallons of milk
This is a usual purchase, but someone asked how much we go through.
We usually go through between 6-8 gallons a month. We still had one left in 
the freezer before I went shopping, which is why I only bought 6.

Dairy Items
Bought cottage cheese and sour cream at Costco. Each were under $3 and 
will last all month. I always look at the expiration dates to make sure 
they will last all month. These will stay in the fridge, since they do not freeze well.

Everything else I bought came from my pantry list. I take all my meals from this list. So there you have it. The details on my shopping this month. Next month I plan to stock up on sugar, butter/margarine, and kid snack items. I will definitely be posting about those when I do. Hope your shopping is uneventful and frugal. 

Also a quick note:
Some of you have e-mailed me wondering why your milk jugs have cracked. Honestly I have no clue. Many of you have freezed your jugs with no problem. I have never had one crack on me. I would try pouring a bit out and then freezing them. It may be that your jugs are extra full.

Are you new to Blissful and Domestic?
or do you want to catch up on all my money 
saving tips and tricks?

Check out all the links below.
Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half
Freezing Your Milk
Living on $14,000 a year
How Does She Q and A
Breakfast and Lunch: Meal Planning and Saving Tips 
Fresh Produce All Month Long 
 Save Money at Costco
Menu Planning: Pantry Staples List 
Weekly Menu Plans + Printable Shopping Lists
Dressing on a Shoestring Budget

Also do you need help meal planning this month?
I have free weekly meal plans and printable shopping lists for you.
Check them out HERE or click the picture below.


Have  a Fantastic Day Lovelies!

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  1. I made a list of 14 dinners, some I will make 2 of each meal and freeze one, so hopefully it will last all month. We shall see : ) Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. I just did my Costco run last night too. They were handing out samples too (I thought it was just a lunchtime thing so I was super giddy ;). Anyway...had to tell you, you've helped me cut my budget in HALF already. My husband is so pleased (because of this now our household budget is balanced) and is recommending your blog to friends :).

    Thanks, girl!


    1. Bobi you just made my day! I am so proud of you! Tell your hubby thanks a bunch for telling his friends. That is seriously so cool;)

  3. I'm a newish follower, and am curious about milk. Maybe you've covered this before. I've always heard it doesn't freeze well for drinking. Do you do anything special, or just not drink it straight, or maybe you do?

    1. I just started doing this and it's fine from the freezer. I was uneasy about it and my husband was super skeptical but we are both converts. You do have to plan a day or two ahead when your milk is getting low because it takes a while to thaw.

    2. Yep you do have to plan ahead, since it takes about a day for it to thaw out. That reminds me I need to take some out of my freezer;) I let mine sit in my sink all day. When I can shake it and not hear any ice moving inside, I know it is thawed. I put it in the fridge after that.

  4. I read your blog on cutting your grocery list in half and we officially made it through August with only one grocery shopping trip!!! I normally spend $100 a week and I spent $200 for the whole month this month!!!! I couldn't have done it without your reading your blog, you have such great advice!!!! Thank you!!!!!!

  5. This is a great way to plan. I used to do this when the kids were little. Once they were grown I didn't need to do this anymore. Now that middle son is out of the marines and home, I need to do it again. He eats more then 3 people, and I am spending a fortune at the store. I always love reading your blog.
    Have a great weekend.
    Debi @ Adorned From Above

  6. I've been using a Costco system to shop since having my second son over a year ago and it saves us sooo much time and money. I love it. Our meat department is ridiculously expensive though, so we buy our meats local, or use Zaycon. Sounds like your Costco prices are considerably lower than mine as well. Good for you!

    Have you ever tried making your own burger buns or hotdog buns? They are SO easy, and if you are already buying all of that flour, it's worth a try. I can send you the recipe I use if you're interested. :)

  7. After discovering your blog a few weeks ago I just planned and shopped for an entire month for the first time ever. I am so excited to have full cupboards, a meal plan on the fridge, and (hopefully) money left in my wallet at the end of the month! My best friend and I made a goal of cooking at least 90% of our family's dinners at home, and even got together to make a few freeze-ahead meals. Thank you SO MUCH for your inspiration!!!

  8. You have inspired me to try to shop just once a month. Thanks for all of your helpful advice. Can you freeze soy milk?

  9. Did my first "once a month" shopping today! Took while this morning to plan out, but I had menues made already. I just needed to make my grocery list and cross out what I had on hand already. Then of course I had to go thru my coupon binder and match up coupons. ;)

    All in all, I spent $290 for the ENTIRE month!! I saved $25 using coupons. Now grant it, this is my first shop like this so I might have forgot something. So far the only thing I think I forgot is cottage cheese. YAY! :)

    Thanks so much for this!!

  10. Do you try to put your cottage cheese in the refrigerator upside down? It seems to make it last longer. (There is a scientific reason for it, but I can't remember why at the moment.)

  11. you have great advice. I am meal planning and down to 80 a week, I would love to get it down to 50 w 1 costco trip a month. Before I discovered your blog I grocery shopped 3 times a week at fifty bucks a trip.

  12. Hello,
    this was our first month of planned meals. We are young couple living together a bit less than a year, so we were quite new in family organization things. Last month we were doing weekly meal planned shopping (small fridge, mini freezer) and followed some of your other budgeting tips. The outcome was amazing: we spent 240 euros (300 dollars) on groceries and detergents(compared to what I estimate about 600 euros before). Since I am already very good on traveling on a budget we managed to book plain tickets and hotel in Gran Canaria almost only with saved difference(400 euros for 2 persons from Germany)! Thank you for the precious tips and inspiration!
    Our aim for September: 10 day shopping, on 200 euros total!

  13. I did the bulk of my shopping today, and implemented using freezer meals (relying heavily on my stove and crockpot) preparing them all today. I only started with buying for and preparing the main component of my dinner, knowing that the sides we do are usually easy peasy (steamed veggies, garlic cheese bread, rice, etc) I'll still have to go to the store for things we run out of (eggs, bread, bagels) but knowing that the big bulk of my shopping, and general headaches (trying to figure out what to make for dinner)is done, rocks. Big huge thanks to you, and to other blogger-ladies that have helped me develop a system that will hopefully work awesomely for us.

    1. P.S. You guys extra rock, because we just got married in April and moved in together last December, and I've been thinking "wow, I'm an awful wife" because I'm too busy at work to think of what to make, and I'm too tired when I get home to really WANT to make anything, so there were many many nights when my poor hubby had to fend for himself with whatever he could find in the fridge or pantry. Now, I can be a less crappy wife and actually FEED my husband, as well as be less crabby because I have less to do when I come home. :) Yippee!

  14. I have tried to freeze milk in the past but have had problems getting it to defrost all the way and am left with a chunk of ice in it. What are your suggestion for getting the milk back to normal??

    Michelle from Illinois

  15. Wow, I just stumbled across your site (pinterest of course) and it fits in perfect with my new "ah ha" moment. I've been reading and learning about meal planning for a month and hoping to start grocery shopping only once a month and this is inspiring! I just read like 10 of your posts but I haven't seen anything about where you buy your meat? I noticed you didn't have it on your Costco list. I want to try a one shopping trip month next week but it will be costly to jump to that and I'm trying to figure out the best place for meat (we do have an Aldi and some of their meat isn't bad).

    1. Hi Beth!

      I thought that jumping to once a month would be a huge deal, but it's not. The way I was able to do it is to go to a grocery envelope with our budget, and I buy everything to cook for a month at the very beginning of the month. I'm not sure where Danielle buys her meat, but I usually buy it at Costco, unless I can find it cheaper on sale somewhere :)

  16. Hi...
    I'm still a little new here, and maybe I just haven't read that far, but what about fresh veggies and fruit? I get mine from a local CSA, but I really only get 2 weeks worth at a time. Is this included in your monthly shopping or is it separate?

  17. Hi Danielle - Great blog! Thanks for posting all of this. I need to get back on the money saving train. And let's face it, I'm ALWAYS open to learning about ways that will let me only go to the grocery store once a month! I have a question though... I sat down and made a month meal plan (for August), but I'm already noticing that I need to buy 8 lbs of ground beef and I'm not even sure if it will be on sale next week when I do my first monthly shopping trip. My question is, do you wait until the sales flyer for your shopping week comes out before making your plan/list? (I would normally do this for my weekly trips, but planning for a month seems a bit harder). Thanks for your help! - Lora (loradmc at


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