I eat the same thing for breakfast and lunch every day during the week, so it was relatively simple to figure out how much I was spending. I’ve rounded some of the costs up so that the budget I make from this takes into account inflation over the next few months and if some things increase in price. For instance, I think the Romaine hearts are a 6pk for $5.49 but I’ve rounded it up to $6.
Breakfast in the weekday mornings consists of shredded sautéed Brussels sprouts and par steamed broccoli, topped with a homemade breakfast sausage and a semi fried egg, along with ¼ of an avocado.
I’ve started using local ground game instead of the standard ground pork/turkey from Costco. The sausages taste better (Buffalo is so good!) but it might turn out to be one of the places I can cut my spending.
I made Buffalo Breakfast Sausage this week and my 500g of ground meat ($9) made 6 patties.
The eggs I buy are $7.99 for 18, so each egg works out to be 44cents.
5 Avocado from Costco are normally $5.99 but last week I got them for $4.99, so the ¼ I ate for breakfast weighs in at a whopping 25cents. Since they’re not normally on sale, I’ll calculate the ¼ using the regular price.
I use a half a bag of broccoli ($5/bag) and a half a bag of Brussels sprouts ($4) and divide the total of that into 5 meals. That makes the Broccoli portion 50cents and the Brussels portion 40cents.
For Lunch every day I have one romaine heart (6pk for $6) topped with 3 baked chicken thighs, a handful of cherry tomatoes, 1/5 a jar of homemade Caesar salad dressing and ¼ of an Avocado. Sometimes I have ½ a grapefruit with it.
The chicken thighs are from Costco and come about 26 to a package for about $22. The Caesar Salad dressing costs me $3.25 to make and it lasts for a whole week. The tomatoes come in a small clamshell for $4.49 and the Avocado is another ¼ from the daily Avocado that comes 5 to a bag for $5.99. The grapefruit come 9 to a bag for $8.99… they’re HUGE!
1 Sausage $1.50
1 Egg $0.44
¼ Avocado $0.30
Broccoli Sauté $0.50
Brussels Sauté $0.40
Total Breakfast $3.14
I think if I switched back to ground turkey or ground pork from Costco I could probably save about $0.75 per patty… I don’t know if it’s worth it to switch from grass fed organic ground game to Costco portions of ground meat for a savings of $0.75 a meal.
I don’t know what a standard Paleo Breakfast is supposed to cost though…
1 romaine heart $1
3 chicken thighs $2.53
1/5 jar of Caesar Salad Dressing $0.65
1/5 Clamshell of Cherry Tomatoes $0.89
¼ Avocado $0.30
½ Grapefruit $0.50
Total Lunch $5.87
There are a couple ways I could cut back for lunch. I currently buy the Romaine hearts but I can buy one pound of mixed spring greens that lasts a week for about $3.49. I could also buy less expensive cherry tomatoes (I buy the heirloom multi-colored ones) and hopefully when this produce comes into season at the local farmer market I can really save some money. I think I could also buy oranges or a different type of fruit that might come out to less than $0.50 per serving. Again, I don’t know what a standard lunch costs. It would be reasonable to compare this salad to the Whole Foods salad I used to buy that was essentially the same thing (although with the addition of unapproved cheese, dried cranberries and really nasty (but so tasty!) dressing. Those calculated out to approximately $12-13 per serving and I didn’t get avocado, tomatoes or a grapefruit at that price.
My breakfast and lunch combined daily total is $9.01.
It’ll take me a little longer to figure out the dinner calculation because I make something different each week and there’s usually enough for dinners and then some to freeze, along with a lion’s share of vegetables. I will also have to factor in the can of coconut milk I use per week which is $2.69, and then I’m not sure how I’m going to cost out tea and sparkling water. I hope with everything included I can come in well under $100 for the full 7 days (weekends will be less expensive because I don’t seem to eat as much).
I’d be interested in any thoughts or comments about the general cost of Paleo meals, or ways in which I can make this way of eating less expensive. If I can’t, that’s one outcome of this exercise and I’m okay with that too! Thoughts?