I spent close to $1000 the first W30 I completed last winter. Full disclosure: I have 18yo and 21yo sons at home who were happy to play along! I purchased a lot of organic chicken, grass fed bison, Aidels sausages, compliant sunbutter, different oils, spices, Kerrygold butter, and other high end food products. Had I purchased exclusively grass fed beef I'm sure that number would have been closer to $1200. This was my Christmas present to myself.
This go around, I'm keeping the costs down by purchasing conventional meats/chicken and discarding skin/fat. I simply cannot afford the grassfed/organic options. Also, I'm buying vegetables/fruit in season and relying on hearty/cheaper standbys such cabbage, sweet potatoes, onions, etc. I'd love to eat swiss chard, fresh mustard greens, etc. as I want, however spinach and kale are cheaper and just as nutritious. Frozen vegetables can also be purchased on sale and stocked. For making mayo, I use the Bertolli Light Tasting olive oil. It routinely goes on sale for 50% off and I then purchase 2-3 bottles at a time. I no longer buy salad mixes but purchase the greens and prep them myself. I don't buy expensive nuts, bottled probiotic drinks ($4/bottle), sausages ($6 for 4), etc. So far, my weekly food budget has only increased by about $30. I'm hoping these changes will help me complete another W30 and keep me from the dollar menu at McDonalds.
You guys. Are you ready for the best story ever? ARE YOU?
Tonight boyfriend I went over to a friend's house for dinner. This friend knows I am doing Whole 30 and is bemused by it, but has been supportive. She made a dish served over couscous, but made sure she cooked everything else with nothing I couldn't have, and I just brought cauliflower rice to go on mine.
Friend has a four year old daughter. This is relevant.
So we're all chatting before dinner, and me doing the Whole 30 comes up, and friend's husband is giving me grief about it, and like a million times in the conversation, "whole wheat" comes up with reference to the couscous. He's saying things like "but it's whole wheat," and "whole wheat is good for you," and whole wheat whole wheat whole wheat ad nauseum.
So we sit down to dinner, and the four year old takes one look at the couscous and starts to cry. Husband shoots me this dirty look and I'm like DUDE I didn't say anything to your kid, I would never, and so he says, "Baby, the couscous is so good, it's whole wheat."
Kidlet cries harder. Dad says, "Why don't you want to eat the good whole wheat, is it because Miss Ali isn't eating it?"
"NO," sobs the kidlet, "THAT'S WHAT GOES IN THE KITTY POTTY."
They use this: http://www.swheatscoop.com/our-products/original-formula/