how we grocery shop+ a trifle recipe

I've had a quite a few questions lately asking how we work grocery shopping so I thought I'd write out a few notes on how we go about it.

First things first.

I try to keep our shelves stocked with the essentials. We always have sugar, flour, bread yeast, canned and dry beans, oats, cold cereal, rice, and things available.
In our freezer we have meat, some frozen soups, veggies, and lots of tomato sauce and blended tomatoes.

On shopping day (which I usually do on a Friday afternoon or a Saturday morning) I take stock of what of the above needs to be replenished and what we need for the fridge.
Personally I find it easier to NOT make a list of meals we are going to have for the week and then the ingredients we need to make said meals (although this is how we did it growing up and I do think it works best for large families). Instead I check the cupboards and then write down what I know we use during the week that we are running low on. Milk, eggs, cheese, meat, veggies, etc.

For shopping we usually have a budget of $50.00 for food and $20.00 for the household stuff (household as in toilet paper, shampoo, dish soap, clean supplies, and diapers).

When I arrive at the store the first thing I get are my veggies (if there are any on sale I grab those). I try to stick to seasonal things with the produce and most of the time in the summer/fall I buy them locally from nearby farms and farm stands.

Next I move to the dairy and then to the meat. For meat I look for good deals on sale (to stick in the freezer for later). Oh, and I usually buy cold cuts for Adam to make sandwiches for lunches at work.

I find that unless I'm shopping at a discount grocery store most dry ingredients are cheaper (and the same quality) at the Dollar Store, so I go there to buy canned stuff; olives, tomatoes, mayo, ketchup and such.

Of course because I never buy the same groceries and we tend to shop at different stores that $50.00 budget is never quite on. Sometimes it's a bit more and sometimes it's a bit less, however it's what seems to work well for us right now.

We tend to not really eat out that much and I make (most) of our food from scratch so I like to think that helps keep the cost down.

If you go here you can find more of what I have said in the past about what we eat most of the time, and some of our favorite meals/recipes.

As always I love to hear advice, tip, hints and suggestions. If you have any of those please leave me a comment! 

The trifle above is one of our family's favorite desserts. Not only is it quick and easy to toss together but also rather stunning when you get done making it!

You will need:

5 cups of pudding (vanilla, chocolate or both)
2 nine inch cakes, crumbled into large chunks. We like fudge brownies but you can use any cake you would like.
1 pint of heavy cream, whipped.

make sure pudding and cakes are completely cooled.

Candy, nuts, or chocolate shavings for the top.

To make:

Layer a third of the cake on the bottom of your trifle dish (or you can also use a deep bowl if you don't have the dish).

Spread a layer of pudding.

Then a layer of whipped cream.

Repeat layering until you use everything up.

If the top layer did not end with whipped cream then top with it and sprinkle with the topping of your choice.

Cover and let sit in the fridge a few hours or overnight.

This recipe serves approx. 12 people.


  1. Hi Rosie,
    Thank you for talking about your grocery budget. I am always interested in hearing how others budget for groceries. When you say $ this per week? I am thinking it is. Do you ever use coupons to help with your grocery budget? Thanks for taking our questions a while back and answering them.
    Hugs to you all and blessings,

    1. Hi Cathy,
      Yes, it $50.00 a week. I don't coupon, but I do always look for item on sale at whatever store I am shopping at and then I'll grab that and incorporate it into the meals for the week.
      You are most welcome for the question answering :)

  2. Mmmm...yum! :) I shop 2x a month and I'm feeding 8 people from scratch mainly also, so I do menu plan, but I switch meals around all the time. I just know then that I have all the ingredients in the cupboard for x number of meals. I stock up on bulk stuff mainly from a small local Amish store. I keep a running list if staples get low and add that to my list for the next shopping trip. I like hearing how you do it! I never coupon because I almost exclusively by store/generic brands. ??? :)

  3. Hi Amy,
    It sounds like we pretty much shop the same way :) Pretty much we eat about the same 14 (two weeks worth) of meals and I just make sure we always have on hand what we need for a weeks worth of those. Sometimes we switch it up when we get tired/want to try something new, but for the most part it's kinda the same meals.
    And the same thing for me with the coupons. I find that if a use coupons I tend to end up getting a lot of stuff we really wouldn't/don't use.


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