The $400 Budget – 1/7

Last week, Todd and I sat down and created our budget for 2016. Normally, I find our annual budget talk tedious.  Todd does too.  We discuss our finances, though, because we think it is important to be on the same page when it comes to our spending habits.

We were very frugal last year in all of our purchases.  We spent very little on home repairs and remodeling, aside from replacing our central air conditioning.  And our biggest news–we finally managed to pay off both of our cars.  Other than our mortgage, we are officially debt-free.

As a result, there is a little more money in the coffers to spend on groceries this year.  Woo hoo!  Goodbye $350 budget, hello $400 budget.

If you are new to my weekly budget posts, you can see my original piece on our grocery spending here.  Depending on a person’s perspective, this extra $50 a month may not seem like much, or maybe it sounds like a lot.  For me, it is pretty exciting.

To start off my new month and year, I celebrated by buying four Sunday papers.  I forgot to get a picture of them, but I will add them into the weekly total.  The coupons this week were pretty amazing.  I used some to get a few awesome deals already and I have plans for more later in the week.  This week I shopped at CVS, Costco, and two of our local grocery chains.

At the end of the post, you’ll see this week’s menu plan.


extreme couponing families on a budget

  • Dishwasher tabs (80 ct.), $2.70 after coupons
  • Contacts solution (22 oz.), $5.06 after coupons
  • Popcorn (6.75 oz.), Tomato soup (10.7 oz.), Toothbrushes (2), Floss (43.7 yd.), $3.27 after coupons
  • Total: $11.03 after tax & coupons, plus I received $4.00 in Extra Bucks to use on my next purchase


groceries for cheap frugal living

  • Butter (4 lb.), Lactose free milk (1.5 gal.), Shredded cheddar (5 lb.), Skim milk (3 gal.), $37.74
  • Vegetable oil (6 qt.), Coffee (3 lb.), Tortilla chips (3 lb.), Oatmeal (10 lb.), $26.86
  • Veggie straws (25 oz.), Eggs (3 doz.), $7.39 after coupon & Ibotta rebate
  • Total: $71.99

Local Chain #1:

easy couponing menu on a dime

  • Sunday papers (4), $12.00
  • Pasta (5 lb.), Boneless, skinless chicken breast (5.13 lb.), $14.18
  • Oranges (2.58 lb.), Peas (2 lb.), Green beans (2 lb.), $5.12
  • Cheese (2 lb.), Dip (56 oz.), $9.30 after coupons
  • Total: $40.60

Local Chain #2:

feeding a family for less

  • Salad dressing (64 oz.), $3.52 after coupons
  • Baby carrots (1 lb.), Lettuce (2 heads ), $4.69 after Checkout 51 rebate
  • Cottage cheese (22 oz.), Shredded mozzarella (8 oz.), $2.88 after coupon
  • Total: $11.09

Grand Total: $134.71

January Budget Remaining: $265.29


English muffins & yogurt, egg burritos, cereal with milk, eggs & toast, English muffins & cottage cheese, pancakes & eggs


Sandwiches, soup, rice & beans, cheese quesadillas, buttered noodles, burritos, fruits & veggies


Hamburger gravy over potatoes, dinner rolls, green beans

Macaroni & cheese, peas, carrots

Chicken pitas, mixed veggies, lettuce salad

Pizza, lettuce salad

Chicken tortilla soup, lettuce salad

Tacos, French fries

Pepperoni calzones, lettuce salad

How do you keep your grocery budget down?  Email me or leave a comment below!