Monthly grocery budget time! Here’s what got purchased at Casa Anglachel last month.
The overall bill is up this month by just over $125.
Produce costs actually edged a little down from May as produce costs dropped overall. I purchased 125 different items of fresh produce this month. Even with a lower cost, produce is still the single most expensive category of groceries. I tend to buy the same core vegetables each month: Apples, arugula, bananas, green beans, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, celery, carrots, corn on the cob, cucumbers, eggplant, garlic, ginger, grapefruit, grapes, kale, limes, mushrooms, onions, scallions, bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, potatoes, radishes, spinach, zucchini, and tomatoes. They are only 33% of my total grocery costs this month, down from 47% in May. This is more due to increased purchases in other categories.
The bulk of that increase comes from the “General” category. I bought olive oil, a bunch of cereal that the Spousal Unit likes to have with his morning yogurt, many boxes of muffin mix for making muffins for a friend’s party, and a case of chicken stock. This accounted for most of the increased cost.The rest was some baking stuff, nuts, sesame oil, a few kinds of olives, peanut butter, and tomato paste.
Dairy and egg purchases also increased, to $61.72. Yogurt was $16.77. We buy the really cheap Kroger brand at 50 cents per cup, so I can hardly imagine what the yogurt bill must look like for people who buy brand names and for more than one person in the family. More expensive, though, was cheese. $20.87 this month, but we got a large and expensive block of Gruyere at Costco. That will last a while. I needed some extra eggs and milk to make muffins.
Meat and fish are the fourth biggest part of our costs @ $57.11, and pretty much due to one item – fresh sockeye salmon. The two filets we purchased came to $36.12. This is a seasonal indulgence. The other costs were ultra pork shoulder and some Trader Joe’s house brand prosciutto. The pork shoulder got turned into pulled pork for July 4th.
Costs drop off considerably after that. Beverages come in next, with two flats of Diet Coke and a bag of coffee beans, and are cheaper than last month. Condiments and sauces went up because of buying a case of chopped green chilies for the muffins, and buying a bottle of Sherry vinegar, which even at the lowest price is ridiculously expensive. Snacks are rice cakes and green tea mints. Baked goods were two different kinds of sandwich rolls from Costco. Pasta, rice and grains was just a bag of red cargo rice, while legumes was a block of tofu.
Groceries cost $7.36 per person per day for the month. This does not include alcohol or dining out. Those came in at $135.47 and $296.47 respectively, giving up monthly food costs of $873.55, an increase of $260.78. A large (almost $100) part of that increase was a fancy anniversary dinner out.
I expect produce to continue to be relatively cheap through the summer, but I also expect to buy more of it. With me starting the new long-term work contract, we may end up eating out more if I’m not here to cook dinner. We’ll eat more meat than in the colder months because of grilling on the weekends.