It’s too expensive

08 Dec

There’s a Jack in the Box commercial running right now where Jack’s wife comes back from the grocery store with a $200 bill. She suggests that she’s going to save money by cooking more. Concerned with the bill, Jack explains that they can eat at Jack in the Box for far cheaper since there’s a bonus meal that only costs $3.99. There’s also a scene in Food Inc. where a struggling family discusses the fact that they can get a meal to feed their children for $3, but then shows them at the grocery store where a piece of product costs almost as much. I really think this is just an issue of lack of experience in the grocery store. I can cook healthy, nutrient-dense meals that average out to about that and even less. Sure there are some things that cost more, but there are definitely things that cost less as well. We cook most things in bulk so that we can eat it for multiple days. Sometimes I cook even more and freeze for later to save on time.

Some friends of ours recently decided to try Paleo, but they were on a strict budget. When they were having a difficult time grocery shopping, I went to the store with them to see what I could do. We were able to buy plenty of groceries to make several meals for the week. The bill was well under $100 and was going to feed three people for a week. It’s definitely possible to eat healthy without spending exorbitant amounts of money. You just have to watch prices and be smart. It’s a fun challenge for me to see what I can do with the bill at the store. It’s also notable that before eating like this, I was a mad coupon cutter. We bought lots of pre-packaged snack foods, dinners, and frozen meals. I was “that lady” with a full cart and stack of coupons. We spend about the same amount on food now than we did back then. However, now I don’t have to spend the time cutting coupons and I’m not limited to choosing only what we have coupons for.


Posted by on December 8, 2010 in paleo



6 responses to “It’s too expensive

  1. Wendeth

    December 8, 2010 at 6:33 am

    I concur, it is quite easy to cook “bulk” to freeze and eat later. I remember a fellow CBUer of ours told me once it was cheaper for her and her husband to eat out than to cook. There was some truth to that, as you mentioned, depending on how you shop. It is hard, though, when it’s just a couple of people (or a person and child) to buy (say) a whole loaf of bread knowing half of it will go bad…..but then it dawned on me to just throw half of it in a freezer bag. I hate frozen bread, but I hate waste even more. Which for me was the big thing…the amount of waste. I also decided I was more willing to stop by the store almost daily in order to buy fresh fruits and veggies rather than hope they don’t go bad before I use them within a day or so.

    And…let’s not forget to mention the calorie, salt and preservative intake one has when eating fast food all the time. ugh.

    Well done my friend….I think you should develop this as an article and it should be published. Seriously! This is better than a lot of articles I’ve read online these days.

    • jalzen

      December 8, 2010 at 8:12 pm

      I’m with you. We used to shop one or two times a month and just didn’t have fresh produce very often. I don’t like going to the store as often, but that’s what people in other countries do. I just decided it was worth it to me to be healthier. Thanks for the kudos by the way. Also, I’ve seen mini loaves of bread at Trader Joe’s. I don’t know if that’s an option where you are, but it might solve your not as appetizing frozen bread situation.

      • wendeth

        December 10, 2010 at 7:41 am

        You’re right, we used to get half loaves at the intl farmers market in GA….and now we’re in Arkansas…ha ha ha ha, which is pretty much my response to a lot of things now days (even in my own mind). And, I also don’t like going to the store so frequent, I do miss the veggie stands on the side of the road in Pakistan!!!! So much easier to pull up and grab a bunch than park, walk through the store and stand behind lady with crazy kids at check out for two tomatoes! 🙂

  2. Josh Morgan

    December 8, 2010 at 10:53 am

    Nice! Maybe we need to talk to you about shopping.

    • jalzen

      December 8, 2010 at 8:12 pm


  3. Miss Teacha

    December 12, 2010 at 5:27 am

    I find Paleo to be cheaper than when I was eating out all the time. I buy meat–two to three times a month (a total of abt $100) and spend about $15 or less at the farmer market. Now, that the winter has set in my bill has gone up about $25 to visit the veggie store. The thing that bothers me the most about the veggie store is that I know the stuff isn’t organic. But I know I’m getting my nutrients and I’m still dropping weight.


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