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Hi there. I am on Day 1 with my boyfriend. And I was feeling really confident about all the prepping and meal planning I have done for our Whole30. But he just texted me on his break and said that the food I prepped isn't hardly enough to satisfy his hunger. And we spent quite a bit on groceries but I don't think it's even going to last us until the end of the week. To give an idea of what i prepped: Breakfast was a piece of an egg bake packed with veggies. And homemade turkey apple sausages. Lunch was two small baked potatoes with a "sloppy joe" ground beef mixture on top. Snacks were a jerky stick, chia seed pudding and a Lara bar. Does anyone have any pointers on how to make meals that are affordable yet satisfying for a 26 year old guy? I'm feeling overwhelmed at how to keep us both fed.
I'm on Day 17 of my first Whole30 and the only one in my home doing it. I'm wondering about affordability for life after Whole30 (and during). Wondering what some of your monthly food budgets and expenses look like. We were eating what I thought was pretty well when I began this, but now I know better and my husband is basically finishing off what's left of the "bad" foods. We were spending about $500/month for myself, my husband, and our (almost) 10 month old who is mostly exclusively breast fed, so he doesn't count very much yet still. I just finished our budget this month from spending and we spent OVER A THOUSAND DOLLARS on food this month! Please give me some ideas of what it costs to live a Paleo lifestyle. Wondering what next month will be like, cannot BELIEVE how much I spent this month on FOOD. If there's a better section of the forum I should post this to, please let me know! I wasn't sure where to post. Thanks in advanced!
As some of you know, I'm working in Wyoming over the winter. It's a very rural area. I've done several "theme" Whole30's (see links in my signature below) and I got to thinking I'd like to do one that addresses some of the specific issues that can crop up for small town folks. Unique features of this Whole30: Around here it's pretty common for families to live far outside of town on ranches, and they shop in bulk when they come in to town since it's just not feasible or economical to make frequent trips to the store. So that set me up for the first big quirk of this "little house on the prairie" edition of my Whole30 --- a SINGLE SHOPPING TRIP FOR THE ENTIRE 30 DAYS! I'll be cooking and eating breakfast every day. Yes, I, the vocal intermittent fasting proponent will be eating regular breakfast per W30 recommendations. I start work at 7, and I usually wake up around 6, so this should still fit in with my schedule. I will be eating the same breakfast each day. So this breakfast feature accomplishes a few things: addresses concerns about repetitive meals, especially eggs, addresses the time/convenience concern of a "real" breakfast for a early morning worker, and satisfies the W30 rec of breakfast within an hour of waking as a test of lifestyle change for someone who hasn't regularly eaten breakfast in many years due to IF. Menu will be repeated on a weekly basis. I've always like the idea of "Tuesday is pot roast night", for example, and this is a great opportunity to see how that plays out. The weekly menu will help make the single shopping trip more feasible, it will alleviate any concern of "what's for dinner" for a busy working person, it will make batch cooking easy to plan for, it will make to-go lunches easy, it will utilize leftovers fully, it will help "ladder" food across meals: roast chicken to cold chicken to chicken soup (not sure what this process is actually called? Seems like it's a separate concept from just "using leftovers") Kitchen gadgets and utensils will be kept to a simple minimum. Part of the Little House theme ... I'll be using a cast iron dutch oven and skillet and probably not much else. Might do a crock pot but I'm not 100% decided yet. No Instapot, no stick blender, no microwave. Food will be simple and scratch made. Related to the single shopping trip, and also related to the limited availability of specialty items that rural areas often experience, even in the age of Amazon. No Tessamae's, no coconut aminos, no Larabars, no avocados, no Sunbutter, etc etc. Price will also be considered and I'm sure I'll end up at similar pricing to my budget-friendly Cheapskate W30. I'll be starting this Sunday, January 7th. Doing my big shopping trip on Saturday, and yes I'll take pictures of all the food and the receipt. I'll update this thread with my menus and of course will keep up with photos, issues that arise, funny stories, etc.
After going to Trader Joe's, Whole Foods, PCC, QFC, Fred Meyer, and Costco, I've found the promised land for Whole30 groceries at an amazing value: the Korean supermarket H Mart. Years ago, I worked in DC where everyone was doing paleo and eating really boring meals. Except one colleague who made Moroccan spiced carrots, ginger lime stir-fry dishes, grilled meats with exotic spice rubs. That dude was eating WELL. So when I decided to do Whole30, I wanted to be more like that guy and less like the folks who brought salads with boiled chicken breast and lemon wedges. When I lived in LA, my parents often drove to K-Town for groceries, even though they live by tons of large Chinese supermarkets because the Korean market's quality in produce and meats are really high. When I moved to Seattle years ago, I started going to H Mart in Lynnwood because they're large, the produce is cheap, and their meats are very high quality without being crazy expensive. I'm Chinese, but I've never liked the Chinese markets in Seattle (cheap, but generally low quality meats and produce) and I have no patience for the chaos of Vietnamese markets in the international district, although they have super fresh produce at great prices (still not so sure about the meats though). After stocking up my first Whole30 week grocery shopping at all the typical super markets, going to H Mart was a huge game changer for value when I am having to buy as much fresh produce and meat as I do now. Plus, the wide and interesting variety of produce and meat blows a typical supermarket out of the water - I am craving variety when I'm on Whole30. Subbing out Yukon potatoes for purple yams and adding never-loses-its-crunch lotus root in my breakfast hash. Making Korean galibi tang (spare rib soup) with daikon instead of normal bone broth, so I am eating foods with flavors I'm more familiar with. Fresh cheap produce: cilantro, onions, shallots, apples, lotus root, green veggies, green onion, pre-peeled taro, citrus, daikon, napa cabbage, Chinese hollow-vegetable, Korean cucumber (so cute!), whole peeled garlic cloves, purple potato, white sweet potato, Asian pear, all types of hot peppers, huge array of garnishes, etc. The cost of produce is around 50-75% less and for doubling your recipes and stuff you're going to cook right away, this is the place to be to get anything non-organic. Asian potato and sweet potato varieties are usually more dense so they spiralize extremely well, and have a naturally more sweet, nutty flavor than a Yukon or sweet potato. You'll have to dig around the produce because the quality is less consistent, and their cheap fruit is imperfect, but otherwise tastes great (and mad cheap). Most of all, Koreans don't play around with their meats - the meat section has an insane array of different cuts of all animals. Hello thinly sliced pork belly for bacon lovers, bones galore for bone broth, sliced and chunks of meat perfect for stir fry and soups, and Wagyu style beef that look like art. Coconut milk and coconut cream (read the labels) are cheap and good quality. I've never understood why coconut milk is so expensive at typical markets. Their home good section has some cheap and very useful tools like a super fine mesh strainer for $5 for my bone broths, colanders with bowls attached for all the veggie washing, lots of air tight snap containers usually for making kimchi, and all sorts of gadgets. Things I don't/can't get: Organic - stick to your typical supermarket for organic produce without skins and meat, if that's your vibe. Jicama, whole taro, and garlic - just doesn't look that great to me Any leafy veggie that has a lot of dirt - I'm too lazy to wash it off. This is mostly their spinach but I don't like their broccoli, either. Jar kimchi - only one type without sugar and it is enormous None of the market-made korean side dishes (ingredients aren't marked) Coconut aminos - so much coconut everything, except aminos There are still a lot of things I must get from Trader Joe's, QFC, and Whole Foods, like butternut squash, bananas, bulk bin stuff, nuts, dried fruit, etc. So be that dude with the tasty af meal by just subbing out a few of your basics with Asian varieties.