|Mmmmm.... Palak Paneer.....|
Sunday: We went to the grocery after Crossfit, but not for any food that we consumed today. I had a few spoonfuls of chicken salad for breakfast and Cody had an apple. He bought himself a sandwich at the commissary, and I did end up eating a Larbar on the way home to tide me over. I still have a ton of leftover Tuna&Egg Salad left, and I had a huge bowl of it for lunch. For dinner, Cody had a chicken salad sandwich and some leftover pizza, while I had some roasted vegetables and some chicken salad over lettuce. I have some Paleo muffins in the oven for the next few days- these will be my first Paleo "treat," so I'm really curious to see how they turn out! (Apple Cinnamon Paleo Muffin Recipe)
RESULTS: I'm going to be honest, I don't know if this challenge ended in success or failure. We did stay under $100 in groceries, but we ended up spending extra money eating out, and that was not the plan. On the other hand, I believe there was enough food in the house to cover us for the whole time if we would have stayed in... even if there wasn't, I had figured out that I could buy a 1/2 pound of ground beef from Kauflands and make a burger for each of us, and still stay under the $100 limit.
I think the main lesson here is that it is totally possible to save money on our groceries each month--like a lot of money. It just takes some planning ahead and the willingness on both of our parts to eat our leftovers. Now that I know we could eat for almost two weeks on just about $100, it was really aggravating to leave the grocery having spent over $100 on food that will most likely only last us a week.
I did miss entertaining our friends for meals during these past 12 days, and that is the area I will be fine spending extra money on in the future.
The side lesson to this challenge is that it is more than possible to eat Paleo on a limited budget. After leaving the grocery today, I even talked to Cody about how much money we would save if him and I were both eating completely Paleo. To only visit the produce section of the commissary, and the butcher of Kauflands, is a lot cheaper than going up and down all the aisles and buying a bunch of processed food, as well. There are the occasional extra ingredients needed for some Paleo recipes (canned goods, specialty flours, etc.) but all in all, I would be willing to bet that a family eating entirely Paleo would spend less than a family that doesn't. The one consideration is that it does take more planning and more prep-time to eat this way on a budget, and not everybody has that time to spend.
What do you think? 12 Day Challenge: Success or Failure???