007 | America’s Food Obsession | How to Crush Your Grocery Bill

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Congratulations America Your Fat and Broke (2)

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ChooseFI Favorite: top rewards card for beginners

Chase Sapphire Preferred Card​

Looking for the best credit card to start earning travel rewards points? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is our pick. With a 50,000 point signup bonus (after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months), the $95 annual fee waived the first year, and ultra-flexible points (transfers to 13 airlines & hotels!), this is our top choice!

Why you need to take a hard look at your Grocery Bill, and Restaurant Budget and how to to crush it

  • America’s food obsession: We’re fat and broke
  • How Brad’s family saves money on food
    • Being smart with ingredients. Buy in season
    • How often does Brad’s family go out to eat?
    • Go out for lunch instead of dinner
    • Emergency meals in extra freezer
    • Being efficient shopping at one store. Cut down on business
    • Plan out the 2-3 meals you want to cook for the week
    • Index of Top 50 recipes (A++ recipes) to cook
    • Getting five nights of dinner out of cooking two meals
  • Jonathan’s plan: cook for multiple nights and don’t waste food
    • The waistline test and the fridge test
    • Food budget programs
    • Making food prep psychologically easy. Simplicity is key
    • The Ultimate Costco Meal Plan and 10 items Jonathan buys
      • 31 loaves of bread from one 25-pound bag of flour, 18 cents per loaf
    • Find out your price per unit on your staple foods
    • Jonathan doesn’t eat out at restaurants where he needs to leave a tip (goes to Chipotle and Panera)
    • Health consequences – don’t overeat
    • To cut down on portions, plan for leftovers
  • Take willpower out of decision-making
  • Small tweaks to make your life better over years
  • Healthy lifestyle saves money on healthcare

Links from the show:

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18 thoughts on “007 | America’s Food Obsession | How to Crush Your Grocery Bill”

  1. Excellent podcast. One further tip for saving. For those trying out a bread machine for the first time – buy one from a thrift store such as Goodwill. That’s where we bought ours – for $5! I’ve seen them at just about every thrift store I’ve visited, selling at less than $10. Many are in excellent condition. I guess people buy them and use them just a few time and then give up .

  2. Great info! You guys should take a look at the Prudenthomemaker.com website. She does an informative blog that that details her ability to feed 7 children from her pantry. Her husband is in Las Vegas real estate and got caught in the bubble that burst. She is a stay home mom and literally had no money to feed her family. She now gardens and is a great example of frugality.

    Keep the conversations coming. I love your podcasts!!

  3. Hey Guys, Just started listening to the PodCast (Amazing job so far by the way!) and had a question about this particular episode. You guys mention using Costco for savings using discounted prices when buying in bulk. However I was wondering if the amount of savings justify the annual membership fee required to shop at Costco? I know part of FI is cutting down the fees so I am assuming the amount saved shopping at Costco are greater then the annual membership fee? Just looking for some clarification and justification on paying that annual membership. My apologies if this is covered in a later episode as I am not that far along yet.

    • I think you can get the system working for you without using Costco specifically – the short answer is when you cut your food bill in half – the fee easily pays for itself. The more nuanced answer is that the principles still work even if you don’t use Costco – but you would need to adapt them to your specific situation (aldi, Walmart Lidl, Kroger) this can be adapted to most stores

  4. Hey guys,

    I just starting this podcast series today, so trying to catch up. I just wanted to comment about something that Jonathan said at around the 41 minute marker.
    “I have issues with food, I’ve always had issues with food. I have a lot of discipline but I do not have a lot of self control… if it is in my house I’m going eat it and then I’m going to tell myself if you eat it now then you don’t have to worry about it later.”
    This last statement is something that really resonated with me and I wanted to thank you for articulating it well. This is also one of the major reasons why I started a Ketogenic diet (i.e. very low carb, high fat). This has allowed me to cut out all temptation by eliminating the purchasing of sweets. I’ve been on and off the diet for about 2 years, and it has allowed me to gain control over my weight and health (about 40 pounds lost). Unfortunately because of the nature of the diet it incurs a decently high cost due to frequent meat and cheese purchases. Hence I like the idea of trying to simply switch to portion control with cheaper ingredients like rice and bread.
    You guys nailed it right on the head with the costs per meal as the key. I believe Brad also mentioned something about decision/planning fatigue and that is definitely something that my spouse and I struggle with on a weekly basis so I like the idea of a 2-meal (with leftover) plan. FYI I am/was one of those people that scowl at the idea of leftovers, however I realize that might be something that I should concede on. Thanks for the tips and I just wanted to let you guys know that you’ve been able to reach the Canadian audiences.
    Sincerely,
    Michael

  5. Hey Guys,

    Just started to listening to the podcast last week and absolutely love it. Do you have a breakdown or sheet that I can follow regarding what you buy at the grocery store? Maybe I am just missing it on your sight. I am married with 2 young children. Your podcast said that you should only spend $300 a month on food. Please explain how? I am embarrassed to say, but we spend about $220 per WEEK!

  6. Use a instant pot to cook dry beans. In addition to Costco look for a restaurant supply store I have found staples like flour, dry beans and oats are noticeably cheaper there than Costco.

  7. I’m so behind the times, and have just started listening to this podcast. I’m an NP and my husband works full time for the national guard and our schedules are hectic to say the least. We are so excited about finding the FI community! Although we both enjoy our jobs (I have no intention of leaving mine anytime in the near future), we are often overwhelmed and stressed and unable to enjoy time with our three awesome kids and just each other. We are actively trying to find ways to cut back so we can achieve FI before we are in our 60’s and our kids want to have nothing to do with us anymore;).

    We rarely eat out because of multiple reasons, 1, time constraints, 2. money, 3.healthy life style 4. tough to drag three kids anywhere. But getting everything coordinated between meal prepping for lunches for the week, meal prepping for daycare for the week and supper planning can also be exhausting!! We LOVE cozi to help with this. It is a free app (you can pay to upgrade, but I don’t). You can download recipes from other websites onto it, add the recipe to your family calendar and to your grocery list all with the click of a couple of buttons. It SAVES me soooo much time. Instead of looking up recipes and then writing down ingredients onto a grocery list I can do it all in one place. It also makes it easy for my husband as he can just look at the calendar on his app and click on the meal for dinner and it brings him straight to the recipe. I’m not sure if you ever mention this app in later episodes as I’m just starting this podcast series, but I really highly recommend it to any busy mom/parent.

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