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how much do you spend on food per day?

GQgeek

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I'm curious to see what others spend. Don't include restaurants unless they're part of your daily routine. I eat out quite often but I'm not factoring that in to the average, except for my lunch which is eaten at the same place every day.

When I started cooking, I thought I'd end-up spending less, but it hasn't worked-out that way because I typically use expensive ingredients and do everything from scratch. I like to cook good food, not just feed myself.

I usually skip breakfast, but i typically spend $12-13 on lunch at a pasta place and dinner probably costs $10 on avg., which covers my filet mignon or veal (my two favorite meats) and side dishes. I save money by buying the whole filet of beef and butchering it myself.
 

vanity

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Mine is way less than $10/day. I think outside of your food budget, your main concern should be your health. Restaurant foods are notoriously bad for you and if you're eating them for multiple meals, everyday, you're putting a hurt on your body. Pasta for lunch and veal or filet mignon for dinner? You're pushing a thousand calories per meal.
 

GQgeek

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Well I'm only eating out at the pasta place for my regular meals. It's all fresh and they cook it in front of you. You actually order directly from the cook and then he prepares it. Aside from lunch during the week, I cook everything.

My comment in reference to eating out a lot was for "real" restaurants that i take dates to or go to with friends. I didn't want people including that stuff in their average.

How are you spending way less than $10/day? That doesn't even seem possible to me if you're eating decent food.
 

VMan

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Depends. I voted for $10-15 but it is probably more than that. Food costs tend to add up. I do a lot of my own cooking, but also frequent places like the Whole Foods hot food bar, better 'fast food' places like Qdoba/Chipotle, and I also take home food from the deli of this local upscale/health-oriented grocery store. It's easy to spend $10 at those places on one meal alone, though you wouldn't think it prior to going there.
 

vanity

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Originally Posted by GQgeek
Well I'm only eating out at the pasta place for my regular meals. It's all fresh and they cook it in front of you. You actually order directly from the cook and then he prepares it. Aside from lunch during the week, I cook everything.

My comment in reference to eating out a lot was for "real" restaurants that i take dates to or go to with friends. I didn't want people including that stuff in their average.

How are you spending way less than $10/day? That doesn't even seem possible to me if you're eating decent food.


And there ya go, I'm not eating decent food. Lotta sandwhiches, fruits, vegetables, chicken breast and protein shakes. I eat 1-2 'cheat meals' per week which is like a whole pizza or some other mess, but otherwise I don't really care how my food tastes. As long as it's good once or twice a week I'm fine. Kinda like a dog.
 

briancl

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I track all my spending pretty closing in MS Money, and if I add up my spending over the last 12 months on my "Dining Out" and "Groceries" category, it averages out to around $15. Day-to-day, I eat a very simple lunch, no breakfast, and I drink mostly water. My dinners are full meals if I'm eating out or dining in, so that is where I'd estimate most of the expense adds up.
 

Bandwagonesque

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My grocery bill + dining out bill is usually around $200-225/month, and that's in Canadian (aka monopoly) money. I rarely dine out though. I don't see how anybody can spend $20/day on groceries without turning into a fat ass. And I think I eat pretty decent... though nothing wrong with a can of soup and tuna sandwich every now and then.

Oh, and I save money by buying cheap cuts of meat and slow cooking them. Or preparing my own soups and stews in the slow cooker. These things pay off in 6 months easily. The last time I cooked an inside round roast, it cost me $8, and my gf and I got 4 meals each out of it. Mind you, by the 4th meal, you're kinda sick of it...

I'm all about practical, easy to cook, healthy filling meals and saving a buck rather than splurging on gourmet meals.
 

odoreater

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I generally don't eat breakfast, and even if I do it's usually not something that costs more than a couple of dollars. Lunch on the other hand is kind of expensive here in the Brick City. I spend between $9 - $12 for lunch every day. I'd say 3 out of 5 work days I eat dinner here at the office, which is free, but the other 4 days of the week I eat out, which ends up being anywhere between $10 and $50. I then eat some cottage cheese and peanut butter before bed. If I were to average it all out to a daily amount, I would say that it'ss over $20 per day.
 

GQgeek

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Originally Posted by Bandwagonesque
My grocery bill + dining out bill is usually around $200-225/month, and that's in Canadian (aka monopoly) money. I rarely dine out though. I don't see how anybody can spend $20/day on groceries without turning into a fat ass. And I think I eat pretty decent... though nothing wrong with a can of soup and tuna sandwich every now and then.

Oh, and I save money by buying cheap cuts of meat and slow cooking them. Or preparing my own soups and stews in the slow cooker. These things pay off in 6 months easily. The last time I cooked an inside round roast, it cost me $8, and my gf and I got 4 meals each out of it. Mind you, by the 4th meal, you're kinda sick of it...

I'm all about practical, easy to cook, healthy filling meals and saving a buck rather than splurging on gourmet meals.


I'm definitely not turning in to a fat-ass. Better ingredients are simply more expensive. There was an interesting thread on eGullet wherein a guy cooked a five course meal for two out of the French Laundy Cookbook and added up the costs. It was $180 without even factoring in the week it took him to source ingredients and prep his meal, which he spent all day saturday making. Now that's an extreme example, but part of that $180 was a $9 pea soup which is something very simple, but when done right is significantly more expensive than it would be out of a can.

Part of the reason I'm spending so much is that i'm leaning how to cook and making a hobby out of it. For instance, last night I picked 5 recipes out of Bouchon that I'll be making each night this week. It's expensive to cook out of the Keller books every night, but it's worth it because you learn a lot very quickly.
 

Violinist

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I can definately see how you can spend over $20 a day. Just for supper if you want high quality chicken, and good vegetables, it will cost you probably over $10, nevermind if you want to eat good red meat... which I cannot find here in Montreal. At both the major "super" markets (more like food stamp redeaming outlets) near my place, the quality of beef is like Soviet Union style.
 

GQgeek

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You should go to the Jean-Talon market, Violinist. There are some very nice shops there and it's worth taking the time if you enjoy cooking. It took me forever to finally get around to it but I go whenever I can. Generally speaking, if you ask the butcher he can get you whatever you want, prime dry aged beef included.
 

yoyo

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~$10. This includes a couple beers or some whiskey or something.

I could go a lot less if i didn't eat meat or vegetables.

I almost never eat out, hte price is just silly and i would rather eat foods the way i make them.
 

Huntsman

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$14.28/day on average, which does include dish detergent and cleaners and such.

It's the $13/day on lunch that's killing your average -- Ciabatta, Gruyere, real ham, roasted red peppers, watercress, like $2.00. $10/meal for dinner is cheap for good stuff -- that's better than the $20-35 I'd expect to pay around here for a very good veal of filet dish.

~Huntsman
 

GQgeek

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I know Hunstman, it's depressing to think about... I've never gotten the cooking for lunch thing down. I'm not big on sandwiches that sit in the fridge for half the day either.

As for the filet, I pay about $115cdn for the whole beef tenderloin and cut it up myself. Depending on which part we're talking about, I'll cut it anywhere from 1" to 1.75" thick. I think it works out to about $8 per steak with some left over pieces from the end that I use for other things.

It's probably $80 cheaper than it would be from lobel's or some such place, but it strikes a good balance b/c I'm not going to spend a fortune for my nightly meal. When I eat veal, 95% of the time it's milk-fed veal scallops, which will amount to ~7-8 bucks. Again, not from a place like lobel's but unless you're rich, who can afford to spend 18 bucks for for three veal scallops every other night?

I really need to figure out something out for lunch though.
 

Luc-Emmanuel

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I've never counted as it is covered by my wife, but it's probably way over $20 a day. And I don't count the wine.
And I cook everyday using either fresh or frozen vegetables. Meat is expensive as well.

!luc
 

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