USDA’s Cost of Food Guide for Feeding your Family

7 03 2012

How much should we spend per month on food costs?  Is there a magic number?  The correct answer is no.  Not one number is ideal for any one family or individual because everyone’s financial situation differs.  However, the USDA has put together an average cost of food for feeding your family (2010).  The figures are based on purchasing nutritious foods using the Food Pyramid.

The chart is broken down into four categories:  thrifty plan, low-cost plan, moderate plan and liberal plan.  Then the chart is separated by weekly and monthly costs within each shopping plan.  For example, a family of two (husband and wife) is estimated to spend $349.90 per month on a thrifty spending plan.  While a family of four with two toddlers is estimated to spend $992.90 per month following a liberal shopping plan.

View the Official USDA Food Plans: Cost of Food at Home at Four Levels chart here:

As an avid saver and planner, we are under budget following the USDAs cost of food chart.  Under budget by $100 per month following a thrifty monthly plan for a married couple.  Do your food costs match the figures on the chart?  Are you a thrifty planner or liberal planner?  Maybe your figures are higher than the suggested values – how can you find ways to lower your bills?  For help on lowering your grocery bills – view my posts on grocery hounding to help with budget envelopes, creating menu plans, shopping with coupons, etc.




2 responses

7 03 2012

We usually spend around $130 when we do our bi-weekly shopping. Informative post. Thanx!

6 10 2013
Rolist Financial Group

Those are great numbers! Thank you for sharing!

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