Food Stamp Challenge 2011

Welcome to the new edition of the Food Stamp Challenge!

Can you feed your family for $2 per person, per day?  Can you feed them healthy, real food?

I know you can, because I already do.  And I’ll show you how.

SNAP Statistics:

SNAP stands for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.  Most people call it food stamps.

45 million Americans are on food stamps.

That’s 1 in 7.

The average benefit a food stamp recipient in the US received $133.79 per month, or $4.45 per day.

My Food Stamp Budget

I’ll be shopping on half that amount.

My new food budget: $175.00 per week (11 people. $2.25 each. 7 days. I rounded up to make it even.)

My total household budget: $200 per week, and includes food, paper products, diapers, soap, and miscellaneous household goods.  The extra $25/week will go for stocking up and miscellaneous non-food expenses.

I use cash to stay in budget.

I use coupons, but I am not an extreme couponer by any means. I don’t spend hours clipping and matching deals.  If you have the time to do that, you can save even more.

Yes, I’ve done this before, posting 40 weeks of Food Stamp Challenge shopping in 2009.  Food prices are rising every week, I thought I’d tackle the challenge again.

About My Family:

  • My 6 month old is mostly breastfed. This makes her food cheaper, but my food more expensive.
  • My 13 year old is on a special diet. No MSG, no food colors.
  • My husband works at a physically demanding job, often outside.
  • I will be feeding 2 adults, 4 boys (age 13, 12, 9, and 4) and 5 girls (age 10, 7, 5, 2, and 6 months.)
  • I will adhere to my Real Food Manifesto as much as possible.
  • My husband is a grown man and I don’t tell him what to eat.  Expect to see Gatorade on my grocery list.
  • My son is on free lunches at school, but since food stamp recipients automatically qualify, I think that still counts as being within bounds of the challenge- feeding my family on (half) the food stamp budget.
  • I will be using items from my pantry, but this will even out as I purchase items to restock.  In my menu plan, I’ll note pantry items which weren’t purchased with Food Stamp Challenge dollars.
  • We are a busy family.  We have the equivalent two full time jobs and two part time jobs between us plus the time it takes to run a household and be Mom and Dad to nine children.  I don’t bake my own bread anymore and I do use convenience foods.
  • We are not currently on food stamps, but I do have a tiny food stamp budget.  We do receive WIC.

Expect to See:

Meatless meals.

Easy breakfasts. I’m not a morning person.

Luxuries, like coffee, chocolate, and the occasional treat.

Easy scratch cooking recipes.

How to stock a deep pantry on a budget

Are you grocery shopping on a tiny budget?  If you have posts in the spirit of the Food Stamp Challenge, link up your posts in the comments!  And feel free to ask questions.

AUGUST Food Stamp Challenge:

Week 1 $181.08 on food, $1 on household goods.

Week 2 $174.38 on food, $21.89 on household goods.

Week 3: $116.13 on food, $14.45 on household goods.

Week 4: $234.96 on food, $31.49 on household goods.

Total spent: Food, $ 706.55 Household $68.83
Weekly average: Food, $176.64 Household, 17.21

Linking up:

Works for Me Wednesday

I love comments. Tell me what you think!

  • Vegetable Shredder September 25, 2014, 2:34 pm

    Hi i am kavin, its my first occasion to commenting anywhere, when i read this post i thought i
    could also create comment due to this brilliant piece of writing.


About Milehimama

Desperately thrifty mom of 10, sharing my frugal tips, easy shortcuts, recipes, and thoughts on natural living and real food.

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