How much do you spend on food in a year?

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Mr.BB
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How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Mr.BB » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:31 am

This is the third year I have been tracking our expenses. What I have found is that we spend an average of $15,000 a year on food. About $11,000 a year on groceries and about $4,000 a year at restaurants. I think this is a lot, but I don't know how it compares to everyone else?
There is just two of us My wife is a great cook and like she says "we don't exactly eat sloppy joe every night." I know good healthy food (fish,etc) cost a little more and we really do try to buy what is on sale.

This $15,000 (avg) accounts for 25% of our yearly expenses. I am curious, what do most couples on this board spend on their groceries and eating out a year?
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livesoft
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by livesoft » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:36 am

Do your numbers include alcohol? How many people are eating and drinking all that money? Just two? Or is that a lot of dinner parties?

I think good healthy food is inexpensive because less people have touched it to get it to your table. I eat fish maybe 3 or 4 times a week.
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Dude2
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Dude2 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:38 am

I think it is reasonable that you could get by on half of that ($10 a day per person versus $20). The larger question is how much of it do you waste?

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by jucor » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:45 am

That does seem high. We (2 of us) spend about $6000/yr on groceries. We make our own lunches, so that's 3 meals a day for most of the year. We feel we eat quite well -- members of several farm share CSAs, mostly shop at a co-op. We do not purchase much processed foods -- virtually none.

Our non-vacation restaurant total is about $100/mo, often less. We do not eat out that often, and prefer ethnic restaurants when we do -- they're generally food we do not prepare ourselves, and they're often fairly inexpensive!

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by smitty1515 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 7:58 am

Family of 3 here.

We spend $6000/yr on groceries and $1800 dining out.

Here are some blog posts a buddy and I wrote about these topics.

This accounts for 8% of our take home pay and 12.5% of annual expenses. My advice is make Aldi your friend and find some nicer modest priced places to dine out like chipotle, noodles, panera, etc.

If you are dining out for lunch a lot then make it a mission to cook for leftovers during the weekend. Yesterday I grilled 2 pork tenderloins, 1.5 # of chicken breasts, and 3# of chicken drumsticks. Once I got done with that I pulled 3 bags of frozen veggies (green beans, carrots, peas) out of the freezer and nuked them for 5 mins.

We filled lunch containers and this will serve us lunch and dinners until Thursday. These are healthy meals and total investment is less than 20 bucks.

http://www.getinthegreen.com/blog/grocery
http://www.getinthegreen.com/blog/dining-out
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by BogleMelon » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:02 am

Family of 2:
Groceries: $5000
Dinning out: $400
Dinner Parties with friends: $500
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corysold
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by corysold » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:05 am

Family of 8, we spend around $10,000 on groceries and $1800 eating out.

Mostly shop at Aldi and eat lower end meats, ground turkey, chicken, etc.

Stick to the basics for fruits and vegetables. Nothing exoctic.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Sheepdog » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:11 am

We are an older retired couple. This is our spending history.

Grocery store spending, includes sundries, but no alcohol, from Aldi (about 75%) and Kroger (about 25%)

2016 $6085 (Interesting that I did not realize that grocery inflation was that much in 2016!!)
2015 $5478
2014 $5192
2013 $5209
2012 $5342

Restaurant spending includes alcohol: at least one night a week at a nicer non-fast food restaurant plus other fast food mostly lunches
2016 $3533
2015 $4292
2014 $3896
2013 $3716
2012 $4305
Last edited by Sheepdog on Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by nolesrule » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:16 am

Family of 4. We spend about $7500 on groceries, $4500 on restaurants.

We've found that where you live has an impact on cost. Our grocery costs jumped by $100/month when we relocated from Florida to NJ. In addition, we're buying for some specific dietary needs, which makes the costs more expensive compared to their standard counterparts.

Restaurants are more expensive too. And as the kids grow, their appetites increase. The restaurant number probably does include the occasional glass of wine, and some splurge menu items.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by dsmil » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:32 am

Our family of 2 adults and a toddler spends $7k annually at the grocery store (including toiletries, cleaning supplies, OTC medicine, etc), 3k dining out (including drinks/coffee), and another 1k on vacation. We don't go out for lunch during the week, but we do usually go out for a couple of inexpensive meals on the weekend and enjoy going out for coffee.
Last edited by dsmil on Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

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mattyfu1
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by mattyfu1 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:34 am

Family of 4 - living in NY - $7,200 / year

Find it hard to eat well and not spend a ton of money on food - save that for another forum!

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BTDT
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by BTDT » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:39 am

Two of us- $10k exclusive of dining out and alcohol
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UncleBen
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by UncleBen » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:42 am

Family of 2. Budget $350/month food, $150 eating out.

2016
Groceries = $3515
Eating Out = $2235

So $5750 last year. No alcohol. Mostly vegetarian at home, highly sourced from Aldis, Costco, BJ's, Amazon, and Jet.com. Frequent trips to Popeye's for the 2 piece special M-W, Cracker Barrel F fish fry, and meeting out with friends. FWIW, the Popeye's and Cracker Barrel specials are not because we are cheap, we just like them ;-).

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Volkdancer » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:43 am

I am single, consider myself frugal, have what some would call a minimal diet, and am a pescatarian, i.e., no beef, chicken, pork, lamb. Over the past six years I have averaged for both groceries (which includes everything I buy at the grocery store including items like toothpaste and toilet paper) and eating out (which includes coffee shops) a little more than $5,200 per year.

In my thinking, while I can get good peanut butter at Trader Joe's, and grind one's own at the local supermarket, I will pay more for the grind my own at Whole Foods because I prefer the taste and texture.

Karl V

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by fenyahyhi » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:51 am

About the same as you, including alcohol. $11,500 on groceries plus $3,700 in restaurants. Two of us, plus a college kid for three months during the summer.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:56 am

Sheepdog wrote:We are an older retired couple. This is our spending history.

Grocery store spending, includes sundries, but no alcohol, from Aldi (about 75%) and Kroger (about 25%)

2016 $6085 (Interesting that I did not realize that grocery inflation was that much in 2016!!)
2015 $5478
2014 $5192
2013 $5209
2012 $5342

Restaurant spending includes alcohol: at least one night a week at a nicer non-fast food restaurant plus other fast food mostly lunches
2016 $3533
2015 $4292
2014 $3896
2013 $3716
2012 $4305


Yup, there definitely is grocery inflation, I've been seeing it myself lately. Some of the fresh green vegetables and fruits are definitely more pricier this year than last (2017,2016 v. 2015 and prior), meat has been somewhat stable, chicken is comparable, dry goods found in grocery aisles are up, milk is more or less than same. Even the price of beans is up, but you can get alot of mileage out of a bag of beans.

Family of 4/5 (I have family outside of immediate eat often with us) - spent around $5000 last year.
Restaurants - $500
Alcohol - when the mood strikes for a really good bottle of wine - could spend $50 on just one bottle, but it will be a rare occurrence. The rest is under $25, if that. So let's say $150 for wine.
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livesoft
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by livesoft » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:10 am

We give our off-campus college student $175 a month for all food, clothes, personal items, and entertainment. So that would be $2100 a year per person.
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by lthenderson » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:14 am

Family of 5 most nights but 10 one night a week.

$8000/year groceries
$1600/year eating out (rarely with the other five family members)

We eat a lot of things with rice which is a really cheap filler which is why our food bill it probably lower than some. We also live out in the rural boondocks where cost of living is definitely cheaper than most.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by llcoolln » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:19 am

I spend around 8k for a family of 3 (2 adults, 1 toddler, 1 on the way) and this includes health care and personal items. I tend to buy about 50% organic and eat out maybe 2x a week. (I try to ignore how much we actually spend on eating out because that's considered a splurge for us that we choose to spend our money on.) At our current spending habit, I have more food waste than I would like. Less than your average American, but something I'm working on because it's wasteful.

Mr.BB
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Mr.BB » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:38 am

livesoft wrote:Do your numbers include alcohol? How many people are eating and drinking all that money? Just two? Or is that a lot of dinner parties?

I think good healthy food is inexpensive because less people have touched it to get it to your table. I eat fish maybe 3 or 4 times a week.


We don't drink that much. A little more on vacation.
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HopeRetNow
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by HopeRetNow » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:41 am

I love to cook. Fresh is always best. So, I don't scrimp at the grocery store. There's just the two of us (and 4 cats!!!). We spend $10,400 a year on groceries ($200/week). That includes cat food and alcohol. If she loves to cook, then we are right in line with each other.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Jags4186 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:43 am

Groceries, alcohol, and restaurants 2016: $11,546. 2 adults.

I would say we average about $100/month of alcohol, $300 a month on restaurants, and the balance at the grocery store.

I know we are not efficient but it is what it is. We are trying to cut back on drinking.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by LiterallyIronic » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:44 am

We spend $150 - $170 per month for the two of us. Annually, that turns into $1,800 - $2,040. We try to keep to $1/meal/person. Dinner always comes in a little over, but breakfast and lunch come in under. We do not drink alcohol, or hardly even anything besides water and milk. We keep restaurant-going to once or twice per year.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Mr.BB » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:46 am

Dude2 wrote:I think it is reasonable that you could get by on half of that ($10 a day per person versus $20). The larger question is how much of it do you waste?


Good question. I noticed last year that we were wasting some deli meats. We would buy three quarters to a pound of a couple different types of meats and some of it would be thrown out. So now I just buy up to a pound whenever I go shopping and if we need more , just have to go back again.
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Mr.BB
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Mr.BB » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:48 am

Volkdancer wrote:I am single, consider myself frugal, have what some would call a minimal diet, and am a pescatarian, i.e., no beef, chicken, pork, lamb. Over the past six years I have averaged for both groceries (which includes everything I buy at the grocery store including items like toothpaste and toilet paper) and eating out (which includes coffee shops) a little more than $5,200 per year.

In my thinking, while I can get good peanut butter at Trader Joe's, and grind one's own at the local supermarket, I will pay more for the grind my own at Whole Foods because I prefer the taste and texture.

Karl V


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SimonJester
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by SimonJester » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:53 am

One thing to keep in mind is that grocery costs vary quite a bit from region to region. Also some people lump everything they buy at a grocery store into the grocery category and others do not.

Also feeding a 1 year old is a LOT different then feeding a teenage boy involved in high school sports! :shock:

Buying organic is more expensive then non organic. Brewing a coffee at home costs pennies vs $5+ for a Starbucks coffee..

We are right about the same as you with 13K on everything grocery & school lunch, and $1,500 eating out.

Family of 4 with two teenage boys.
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rocket354
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by rocket354 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:54 am

Single, active male. Last year I was right around $3400 all-in, including groceries, restaurants and additional items (paper towels, glade plug-ins, all toiletries, etc). My budget is $300/mo for all that, so I was a little under budget even though I felt like I was spending way too much (too many $10 lunches). I do cook a lot myself and have a nice variety (fresh salmon last night, bacon-wrapped pork loin tonight). Less than $600 of that was restaurants. I can't imagine spending $7500 on food, and not just from a financial perspective. I don't even know what I'd be buying. Foie gras and caviar every night? Either that or I'd weigh 400lbs.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by KlingKlang » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:04 am

Family of three adults. 2016: $4340 groceries, $1655 dining out.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by barnaclebob » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:20 am

Man, this would be nearly impossible for me to figure out. Does chicken feed count instead of eggs? What about spending on the vegetable garden? Charter fishing trips which provide a significant % of our protein?

I come up with an estimate of 8-10k for a family of 2 including restaurants groceries and the items above. We belong to a CSA and strive to know the exact source of all of our meat and that it is treated much better than average while alive (expensive pastured pigs and chickens).

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by why3not » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:27 am

Family of 4 - $30k/year
15k/year at grocery store
7.5k/year eating out as a family
3k/year date night dinners
0.5k/year alcohol
1k/year party hosting
3k/year travel related in excess of typical week

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Jags4186 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:30 am

rocket354 wrote:Single, active male. Last year I was right around $3400 all-in, including groceries, restaurants and additional items (paper towels, glade plug-ins, all toiletries, etc). My budget is $300/mo for all that, so I was a little under budget even though I felt like I was spending way too much (too many $10 lunches). I do cook a lot myself and have a nice variety (fresh salmon last night, bacon-wrapped pork loin tonight). Less than $600 of that was restaurants. I can't imagine spending $7500 on food, and not just from a financial perspective. I don't even know what I'd be buying. Foie gras and caviar every night? Either that or I'd weigh 400lbs.


I always find it funny when people make these types of comments. You'd be surprised to know those of us who are spendthrifts think all you eat is rice and ketchup.

Reality is what drives up the costs are poor planning, suboptimal dietary choices, and family dynamics.

Family dynamics comes into play a lot. My family likes to get together by going to a restaurant. That restaurant is going to set my wife and I back $75. If we go out to eat with my parents once a month, and wife's parents once a month, that's $1800/yr. Just the way it is. We live in a tiny 600 sqft apartment so we're not interested in hosting people. We also still like to go out to eat every now and then on our own. That's another $1500 or so a year. So right there we are pretty much at your yearly spending.

I'm always surprised when people say they go out to dinner and spend $30 for 2. Do most people consider eating out going to Applebees? I have no interest eating at those types of restaurants.

Kix
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Kix » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:31 am

Family of 7. 6600 on groceries, 1500 on eating out. The grocery number is rising as the kids get older. They currently go through a gallon of milk EVERY DAY. Blows my mind.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by bloom2708 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:36 am

Personal Capital says we spent $7,340 on Groceries and $1,125 on Restaurants in 2016. Family of 5 (3 girls, 16, 13, 9). They are definitely eating more as they grow up.

Groceries might be a bit high as we will go to Costco and buy mostly groceries and some household items and I will categorize that all as Groceries.
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by SQRT » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:47 am

Eating out budget is $60,000 per year and purchased food/liquor about $20,000. We often pay for family and friends when eating out and entertain at home fairly often. No judgemental responses please. Enjoying ourselves.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by yellowgirl » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:47 am

Jags4186 wrote:
rocket354 wrote:Single, active male. Last year I was right around $3400 all-in, including groceries, restaurants and additional items (paper towels, glade plug-ins, all toiletries, etc). My budget is $300/mo for all that, so I was a little under budget even though I felt like I was spending way too much (too many $10 lunches). I do cook a lot myself and have a nice variety (fresh salmon last night, bacon-wrapped pork loin tonight). Less than $600 of that was restaurants. I can't imagine spending $7500 on food, and not just from a financial perspective. I don't even know what I'd be buying. Foie gras and caviar every night? Either that or I'd weigh 400lbs.


I always find it funny when people make these types of comments. You'd be surprised to know those of us who are spendthrifts think all you eat is rice and ketchup.

Reality is what drives up the costs are poor planning, suboptimal dietary choices, and family dynamics.

Family dynamics comes into play a lot. My family likes to get together by going to a restaurant. That restaurant is going to set my wife and I back $75. If we go out to eat with my parents once a month, and wife's parents once a month, that's $1800/yr. Just the way it is. We live in a tiny 600 sqft apartment so we're not interested in hosting people. We also still like to go out to eat every now and then on our own. That's another $1500 or so a year. So right there we are pretty much at your yearly spending.

I'm always surprised when people say they go out to dinner and spend $30 for 2. Do most people consider eating out going to Applebees? I have no interest eating at those types of restaurants.


We love Asian food. We spend less than $35 for a family of 4 in many Asian restaurants. Or salad buffets like Sweet tomatoes at $9 per person kids under 2 are free or $3 for kids over 2.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by remomnyc » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:52 am

Brace yourself. Family of 4.

Groceries: $18k/yr (excludes alcohol)
Delivery/Restaurants: $5k/yr ($40/wk for pizza/sushi and one nice outing/mo)
Lunches for adults: $5k/yr (approx. $10/day pp)

Make breakfast and lunch for kids. Cook dinner six nights/week. Most of the cost is fresh produce, meat and fish. When the kids go away during the summer, our grocery bill is less than half. We compensate by eating out a lot.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by gkaplan » Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:59 am

Last year, I spent $4,758.42 on groceries, but not all of that was on food. Just as a wild guess, I figure my grocery food expenses were about $4,000, but like I said that's just a wild guess. Add to that, I note that I spent just over $200 eating out.

I am single and retired.

(Edited to add last paragraph.)
Last edited by gkaplan on Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by feh » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:02 am

Family of three, for 2016: $7500 for groceries, another $1100 for restaurants.

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Midpack
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Midpack » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:04 am

Just two of us, we're foodies, so higher than average and we could cut back (we could spend a lot more too).

In 2016 we totaled $14.1K.
* Food & liquor - $7.8K
* Dining out - $6.3K (we dine out every Sat & Sun)

We all have our individual hobbies, wants & desires - so I'm not sure what one could conclude comparing certain categories. YMMV
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by barnaclebob » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:25 am

SQRT wrote:Eating out budget is $60,000 per year and purchased food/liquor about $20,000. We often pay for family and friends when eating out and entertain at home fairly often. No judgemental responses please. Enjoying ourselves.


What is a typical dinner cooked at home for you and how much of the 20k is alcohol? I can see spending 60k on dining out but it would take us some effort. That's 300 $200pp meals a year.
Last edited by barnaclebob on Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by RoadHouseFan » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:26 am

Groceries are around $6000. We avoid overpriced, highbrow places like Whole Foods.

Eating out totals around $1000. Cracker Barrel, Chick-fil-A and Dairy Queen meet our needs with occasional visits to fancy restaurants like Olive Garden or Outback.

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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by bloom2708 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:33 am

SQRT wrote:Eating out budget is $60,000 per year and purchased food/liquor about $20,000. We often pay for family and friends when eating out and entertain at home fairly often. No judgemental responses please. Enjoying ourselves.


This is a wonderful food/dining out budget. I am envious of what the rest of your spending budget looks like. :shock: My only problem would be that I would weigh 300+ unless I chose my meals very carefully and exercised like a mad man. Thanks for your post.
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SQRT
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Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by SQRT » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:41 am

barnaclebob wrote:
SQRT wrote:Eating out budget is $60,000 per year and purchased food/liquor about $20,000. We often pay for family and friends when eating out and entertain at home fairly often. No judgemental responses please. Enjoying ourselves.


What is a typical dinner cooked at home for you and how much of the 20k is alcohol? I can see spending 60k on dining out but it would take us some effort. That's 300 $200pp meals a year.

Actually, I apologize. The eating out budget was. $40k I got confused with the "cash" expense budget that includes our food/liquor which is $60k. Food/liquor might be a little more than the $20k I mentioned and good portion of that would be alcohol, we don't track food/liquor separately.

Typical dinner would be well, typical. We obviously don't skimp on the food we cook. We tend to eat out a lot in Arizona and Toronto but eat in at the Lake house where we entertain a lot. Lots of BBQ there. Would probably have 250-300 meals out a year often with others who we often pay for, ie usually family members. Dinners out tend to be fine dinning, while lunches not so much. Have to exercise a lot to keep my weight down.

stoptothink
Posts: 3740
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by stoptothink » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:46 am

We are definitely not typical, and our situation has been discussed here many times, but we spend on average ~$3500/yr total on food...for a family of four (children 5 and 2). That represents about 2% of our gross household income. We have very strict diets, almost never eat out (my wife, maybe 4-5x/yr with her friends, I do it once a year on our anniversary), and I have gotten grocery shopping on the cheap down to a science.

IMO, the OP's spending on food is absolutely insane, but if they can afford it, who am I to judge?

froman118
Posts: 139
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:04 pm

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by froman118 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:05 pm

2016 totals for family of 4 (kids 2 and 4):

Groceries $4,257.49
Restaurants $2,539.84
Lunches $1,311.27
Alcohol & Bars $810.17
Party Food $598.90
Coffee Shops $99.84
Travel Food $250.61

$9,903.12 total. Shouldn't include any significant amount of non-food items as I split everything up in Mint.

michaeljc70
Posts: 1955
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by michaeljc70 » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:10 pm

It depends how often you eat out, where, and what you eat/drink.

I mean, tilapia I can buy for $3 a pound yet Chilean Sea Bass is $16 on sale. If you don't drink vs. drink $5 bottles of wine vs. drink $25 bottles of wine, it is completely different. If you eat out at Applebees vs. a Michelin rated restaurant it is completely different. I don't know that is is really useful to compare things that are not alike. Drinking alcohol makes a huge difference too.

If I shopped at Whole Foods without regard to sales vs. where I typically shop looking for sales, I'm sure I'd spend 2-3x what I spend on groceries.

Last year we spent (2 adults) about $5k on groceries/alcohol and $7k eating out (lunches and dinners). When we eat out dinner it is typically $100 a person.

Triple digit golfer
Posts: 2822
Joined: Mon May 18, 2009 5:57 pm

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Triple digit golfer » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:13 pm

Last year my wife and I spent $13,000 in a category where I lump in groceries (including non-food), restaurant meals, and entertainment (golf, movies, etc.).

If I had to guess, I'd say that food was around $8,000. Working on getting that down this year due to fewer restaurant meals.

N10sive
Posts: 319
Joined: Thu May 05, 2016 6:22 pm

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by N10sive » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:24 pm

Single, before finding bogleheads and not tracking where my money was spent I estimate probably around 15k on restaurants/groceries. The majority of that was restaurants and alcohol since I was pretty much living a bachelor life. Never cooked and ate out twice a day(not a huge breakfast person).

Now 6 months in to tracking my finances, food is estimated to be around 6k still including mostly restaurants. Meal prepping saves me a ton. I still can save a bit more but the transition from eating out for lunch to bringing a meal from home I haven't been on top. My goal is to spend on average $10 a day in the future.

Wellfleet
Posts: 391
Joined: Sun Jan 26, 2014 8:18 pm

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by Wellfleet » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:43 pm

$12,000 last year inclusive of groceries ($9500) restaurants ($2500) for family of 3 including 1 small child. This mostly excludes household products and diapers.

daggerboard
Posts: 94
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2012 2:16 pm

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Post by daggerboard » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:45 pm

I think I got the high score.

Family of 4.
Both parents work full time in demanding careers, so food also includes MIL/nanny etc for most meals. Also host in-laws for large family dinners every 1-2 weeks. We also host play dates w dinner etc.

So on average we feed 3 adults and 2-3 kids daily.

We cook most meals except for lunch at work where we eat out prob 80% of time, and probably one restaurant sit down meal with family once a week, plus meals on vacation. We cook mostly from scratch one the weekend and then freeze/reheat during week. We mostly minimize processed foods, but dont go nuts on buying organic etc.

Most of food is simple - i.e. non-foie gras & caviar - like chicken, pork, lots of veggies and fruit. But do like to buy fish from our local superb fishmonger once a week where I do spend a premium for the high quality.

In 2016, we spent $32k
At grocery stores (including alcohol, toilet paper, diapers, formula toothpaste etc): $23k
At restaurants (excluding week day lunch at work): $5k
At cafeteria, lunch places: $2.5k
At coffee shops: $1k (this is 99% the wife, and raising this does not improve marital bliss)

We know this is a lot. If one or both of would quit work these costs would plummet (no more nanny to feed, more packed lunches, less waste, more cost conscious shopping etc).

We currently shop once a week and estimate what we need for the week. Since the opportunity cost of having to go shop if we run out of food is high given our work and the value we place on spending time with the kids when we dont work, we tend to overbuy and then have non-trivial (and frankly irritating) waste.

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