Just started the last 3 months of 2019 and I wanted to do an update on this lifestyle change. I planned on spending only £260 on food this year so £5 a week.

I started this as a way to save money and in the end be able to make great progress on my life plan. This is a success so far and I am that much closer to buying my own place. My corner of paradise.

So far, I should have spent £190 and I only spent £121.97 but the full cost of my meals so far would be £156.94.
This year, a secondary goal was to empty my cupboards to the max. They are still full of food but I would say that I only have a third of the stock I used to have.

In the beginning, it was tricky to find cheap alternatives to what I use to buy.
The issue was that I wasn’t looking for the right things and was expecting to find cheaper versions of the ready-to-eat meals I was used to or cheaper products that would replace the things I would usually eat.

Through this experience, I realised that I gave up on cooking and baking because I “didn’t have the time” when I wasn’t planning my meals. Managing a weekly minimal shopping time during the weekend saves time on shopping and cooking and saves a lot of money.
I used to spend 20 minutes in a store just thinking about what to have for dinner and would end up buying something at least half-prepared to save time on the preparation.

After 3 months, I started creating recipes in my head even before thinking about what to buy. My brain just adapted to this new way of managing food and I would have my grocery list already done in my head in the middle of the week for the following week.

I’m enjoying this way of managing meals and food in general.
I reduced drastically my food wastage to the point where I don’t think I waste food anymore.
I might just have to compost moving forward to avoid garbage!

I think I will keep on managing food that way while adding a bit more to my weekly budget next year to add products that I miss eating such as:
– proper ramen noodles, buckwheat noodles, granola, risotto rice
– seaweed, watermelon, grapefruit, prunes, lime, more fresh herbs
– tofu and halloumi
– fish and seafood

It won’t be a massive change in my daily life but it will allow me to be more creative in my meal planning and diversify a little bit more.
I might choose to spend £7 a week for that reason.

Link to my grocery spend details.

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