Eat Well, Spend Less Week #3 Wrap-Up and $50 Grocery Giveaway

Week 3 of the Eat Well, Spend Less series was all about the grocery shopping process from the point of view of your regional area. From Canada to Seattle to Texas, we all threw our experience out on the table to share the ins and outs of our shopping trips with you. Here’s the wrap-up, and don’t miss the grocery giveaway at the end!

I shared our own shopping hurdles here in Minnesota and how the system changes depending on the time of year. As it so happens, now that it’s warming up (or it’s supposed to be warming up) and the market days are drawing near, I’m remembering all the reasons why the long winters are worth it here in Minnesota. I love watching the farmers’ market come to life and see how the changing season brings in new produce and more and more people.

Navigating Four Seasons in Michigan and the Midwest

Katie is in a relatively similar regional area, and she definitely deals with the four seasons just like we do. She breaks down how to find different deals based on the season and how to use her location in Michigan as a benefit because of other things she is close to like raw milk Wisconsin cheese. From you-pick fruits to preserving food with canning, Katie shares exactly what she does to make those seasons less of an obstacle when trying to provide the very best for her family.

A Canadian Shopping Experience

Moving over to the East and into Canadian territory, Aimee shares her idyllic shopping experience in Montreal, where markets are a way of life. She takes you from the market to the warehouse store to specialty shops and health food stores and then out into the farm and her own potager.

The Hills of the Appalachians

Mandi shares her family’s strategy for making sure they have what they need each week without needing an emergency run to the store, as emergency runs to the store are around a 2-hour production when you live out in the hills and country. She utilizes things like Amazon’s Subscribe & Save program and looking for options outside of traditional grocery stores, like purchasing locally from farmers.

Everything’s Bigger in Texas, Except the Grocery Bill

Alyssa shares how her grocery bill doesn’t also have to be Texas-sized in the Lone Star State, with tips like her Top 10 Basic Grocery Shopping Rules and the need to shop intentionally to avoid those impulse buys.

Saving in the Southwest

Katie shares her tips and tricks for purchasing only what you need when you’re in the store, from meal planning to avoiding shopping when you’re ravenously hungry. Plus, the pictures of her grandpa’s grocery store are amazing. I’m a sucker for family history.

Saving in So-Cal

Jessica has the challenge of feeding a family with six kids in California, where the cost of living is definitely not cheap. Read how she manages to do it while sticking to a budget. She shares her strategy for stocking up on loss leaders, as well as sharing the real savings in California: produce.

Shopping at Multiple Stores

Carrie shares her strategy for using coupons and the best deals available to save while shopping at over 10 stores. Now, that doesn’t mean she’s visiting all of those stores in one week, but she is selectively rotating where she shops and when she shops there based on the deals available or what it is she buys at any one given store in Colorado.

Saving Money, Time and Eating Healthy

Tammy shared her strategy for eating in the Pacific Northwest on a budget and with a healthy diet. From menu planning to limiting her shopping to two stores, she goes over the nuts and bolts of finding a deal, working ingredients into the meal plan and eating whole foods.

A $50 Kroger Gift Card Giveaway

I’m so excited to be able to give away a $50 Kroger gift card to one lucky Food for My Family reader (and to one reader at each of the other blogs, too!) as part of the culmination to the Eat Well Spend Less series. Even better, we’re not stopping the series! We’ll be bringing it back once a month, covering more topics on how we feed our families healthy food while staying on a budget!

Note: The Kroger gift card is good at all Kroger-owned stores: Kroger, Ralphs, Dillons, Smith’s, King Soopers, Fry’s, QFC, City Market, Hilander, Owen’s, Jay C, Pay Less, Baker’s, Gerbes, Scott’s Food & Pharmacy, Fred Meyer, Dillons Marketplace, Fry’s Marketplace, Kroger Marketplace, Smith’s Marketplace, Food 4 Less, Foods Co. Don’t have one in your area? I’ll trade you for an Amazon/Target/Walmart gift card.

How to Enter to Win

1. Leave a comment. What would you like to see in the upcoming Eat Well, Spend Less topics?

2. Follow @KrogerCo and @FoodforMyFamily on Twitter and tweet the following, and come back and let me know you did:

Win a $50 @KrogerCo gift card to help you #eatwellspendless from @FoodforMyFamily

3. Join the Kroger community on Facebook. Come back and leave a comment letting me know you did so.

4. Join the Food for My Family community on Facebook. Come back and leave a comment letting me know you did so.


This giveaway will run until Friday, April 29th at 11:59 p.m. EDT and is open to all U.S. and Canadian residents. A winner will be chosen at random using from all eligible entries. Each reader has 5 chances to win by completing the above tasks and leaving a separate comment for each entry method completed. Chosen winner must respond within 48 hours of notification to claim their prize. Good luck!

Now, go enter all the other giveaways from everyone else participating in the Eat Well, Spend Less series!

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  1. I’d love to learn more about preserving local produce when it’s in season and less expensive. (No Krogers or affiliates in my area).

  2. Budget-friendly quick meals. Rather than running through the drive-through, meals that can be fixed quickly at home.

  3. I follow Food for my Family on facebook.

  4. Andrea G says:

    I would like to see Eating well and spending less when dealing with Celiac and food allergies

  5. Andrea G says:

    I follow both on Twitter and tweeted (@organicmommaof4)

  6. Andrea G says:

    I follow Kroger on FB

  7. Andrea G says:

    I follow Food for My Family on FB

  8. Michelle says:

    I do coupon and would love to save even more on veggies and fruits! Not much fresh food coupons:(

  9. Michelle says:

    I like Kroger on FB!

  10. Jessie C. says:

    Quick menu plan would be great to see.

  11. Jessie C. says:
  12. Jessie C. says:

    Joined the Kroger community on Facebook@tcarolinep JessieKatie S

  13. Jessie C. says:

    Joined the Food for My Family community on Facebook@tcarolinep JessieKatie S

  14. I’ve loved the series and am so happy it’s not ending. I’d love to see more posts on quick, healthy meals as well as more ideas for stocking the pantry.

  15. Joined the Food for my family community on facebook

  16. I’d love to learn more about food storage.

  17. I like Kroger on Facebook

  18. I “like” you on facebook

  19. I would like to see info about the best way to prepare healthy food ahead. What freezes well, what can be combined ahead of time, etc. Also, any hints for sneaking more nutrition into foods I already make. Sweet potatoes into pancakes, etc.
    Love this!

  20. I follow Kroger on Facebook!

  21. And I also follow FFMF on Facebook! Whew!

  22. I would love to see some info on dehydrating foods that are in season.

  23. I like Kroger on FB

  24. I like FFMF on FB

  25. More money saving, time saving, practical tips.

  26. Maybe how to freezer cook with fresh foods from the farmers market.

  27. FFF facebook fan.

  28. kroger facebook fan.

  29. I would enjoy more frugal meal ideas & recipes.

  30. Follow @KrogerCo and @FoodforMyFamily on Twitter and tweeted:!/hjkllkjh/status/62892760138649600

  31. ‘Like’ Kroger on Facebook.

  32. ‘Like’ Food for My Family community on Facebook.

  33. i would like ways to be a better harvester – of the natural world around me – or at least a better gardener.

  34. Making large recipes out of a few, fresh ingredients lets me eat well on a small, graduate student’s budget! I survive on leftovers! Thanks for the helpful recipes!

  35. My family is planting a larger garden this year which means I need to learn how to can. How do I get it all done while working? Any strategies???

    No Kroger in my area.

  36. I’ve really enjoyed the series, glad to know its not ending. I too would love to learn more on how you might put away in season produce for later comsumption.

  37. More frugal recipes

  38. I’d love a step by step guide on menu planning. I have really wanted to start doing that this year, but am dragging my feet!

  39. I’d love to see frugal ideas and recipes for having people over.

  40. quick, easy and yummy meals! =)

  41. I liked FFMF on FB!

  42. I loved the series — great tips on shopping and planning. I’d like to see some great tasting frugal recipes. Thanks!

  43. My question: I am a college student living on campus. I have access to a microwave, but that is it. How can I eat real food for less? I do yogurt and instant oatmeal for breakfast, but I’m stuck on everything else.

  44. following you on twitter! 🙂

  45. I love what you do! Right now I’d like ideas of things to take on vacation (airplane, boat, motels) to eat with limited ability to prepare. Snacks enroute. Meals in the room when we only have a fridge and occasional access to a microwave. We have food allergies, so eating out is a stressful challenge. Quizzing the staff, answering their questions, etc. gets tiresome and still doesn’t relieve the worry about whether something “snuck” in or we forgot to mention or ask.

    I love when you emphasize what’s in season now so we can take advantage of what’s fresh (and hopefully less expensive) now.

  46. Lynda Clark says:

    I would like to see more healthy budget recipes and ways to stretch foods out to feed more.

  47. Lynda Clark says:

    I am already following you on Face Book.

  48. Lynda Clark says:

    Liked Kroger on Face Book.

  49. Wendy Welch says:

    I now follow @KrogerCo and @FoodforMyFamily on Twitter and I tweeted the message!

  50. Lynda Clark says:

    I am now following you on Twitter and Tweeted the following:
    lyndacooks Lynda Clark
    @FoodforMyFamily Win a $50 @KrogerCo gift card to help you #eatwellspendless from @FoodforMyFamily

  51. Lynda Clark says:

    I am also following Kroger on Twitter and Tweeted about the Giveaway!

  52. I gave up on coupons. Nine times out of ten, if there’s a coupon for it, you shouldn’t be eating it anyway. After a while of making the rounds, I’ve memorized who has what cheapest, and I try to hit whatever store is on my way back from whatever errand I’m running, and then stock up on the things that are cheapest there. As a result, I go to the grocery store about seven times a week, and yet, I never make a special trip there, so I’m not burning any more gas in the process.

    That’s one thing people don’t factor in: your time and gas. If you burned a gallon going there, then you had better have “saved” $4.00 in the process or it’s a net loss.

    Same with coupons. The average home printer cost about 27¢ to print a page, so if you printed a 25¢ coupon, you just lost two cents. Print more than one per page, or even shrink them down to print 8 or more, if you can.


  53. I would love to see ways to feed my family using more whole foods, eliminating convenience-type foods (love Tammy’s recipes!) for less money.

  54. I’m now following Food For My Family and Kroger on facebook.

  55. I’m just getting into vegetable gardening and I can use all the advice I can get on organic gardening!

  56. Following both @krogerco and @foodformyfamily on Twitter, sent a tweet about the giveaway.

  57. I like Kroger on Facebook

  58. I now also like Food for My Family on Facebook.

  59. I’m in an apartment, in suburbia and looking for ideas to eat well and save money

  60. I’m loving this series. I would love to see more information on raw milk and grass fed meats. I’m really interested in learning more about that.

  61. I’ve really enjoyed this series, especially yours as I am in the midwest! Like the fan above, I am interested in learning how to save (and where to find) grass fed meats. I recently watched Food Inc and am feeling a tad paranoid 🙂

  62. I “like” the food for my family on Facebook

  63. I would love more ideas for using a pressure cooker and learning how to preserve foods (purchased on sale or grown at home). Thanks!

  64. I loved the frugal recipes…would like to see more of those!

  65. I ‘liked’ Kroger on Facebook.

  66. Follow you both on twitter @familyfocusblog

  67. I would love to see more on shopping organic in your next features. Thanks!

  68. I would like to learn more about organic meat and eggs.

  69. Kristi F. says:

    I would love to see more on gardening and canning, and on ideas for finding local sources of food.

  70. I’d like to see more about making the most of gardening for food.

  71. Just Coupons says:

    I’d like to see more tips on organic shopping on a budget

  72. Just Coupons says:

    I like the Kroger community on Facebook
    (fb name Just Coupons)

  73. Just Coupons says:

    I joined the Food for My Family community on Facebook
    (fb name Just Coupons)

  74. Just Coupons says:

    I follow @KrogerCo and @FoodforMyFamily on Twitter @Just_Coupons

  75. I would love to see some entries on eating to lose weight on a budget! 😉 We have been trying to eat healthier and lose some weight at the same time, but it seems like most “diets” are quite expensive.

  76. Liked Kroger previously!

  77. I just liked Food for My Family on fb!

  78. I’ve enjoyed all the Eat Well, Spend Less articles. I would like to see more articles on gardening.

  79. I liked Food for my Family on FB

  80. Mami2jcn says:

    I’d like to see info about dealing with kids who are picky eaters.

  81. Mami2jcn says:

    I like Kroger on Facebook with my username Mary Happymommy.

  82. Mami2jcn says:

    I like Food For My Family on Facebook with my username Mary Happymommy.

  83. Definately recipes on whole foods – CSA season starting next week!

  84. More creative meals made with beans? 🙂

  85. More cheap recipes. 🙂


  86. Liz Meyer says:

    I would like to continue seeing more frugal recipe ideas. Thank you!

  87. Liz Meyer says:

    I like Kroger on Facebook.

  88. Liz Meyer says:

    I liked Food For My Family on Facebook.

  89. I love this series – I love all the posts with everyone’s favorite frugal meals. That could be an ongoing “eat well; spend less” topic. A monthly frugal recipe to match the season??

  90. Kelly H. says:

    Learning how to can/preserve food when it’s in season! And recipes!

  91. I’d love to see more on local eating and organic eating. Thanks!

  92. I like the idea of canning. I think this is something everyone should learn how to do.

  93. I am a fan of Food for my Family on FB.

  94. Nicole Greene says:

    More Frugal recipes and meal ideas!!!!

  95. I’d love to see some tips on canning and freezing fresh fruits and vegetables. And preserving herbs, too!

  96. I like Kroger on facebook.

  97. I have enjoyed this series on Eat Well. Live Well. I would like to see more on your garden and what you grow and how you use it to plan meals around what you grow.

  98. Nicole Greene says:

    I follow both on twitter @pittsy82 and tweeted!/pittsy82/status/62963542839660544

  99. Nicole Greene says:

    I “LIKE” Kroger on FB (Nicole Pitts)

  100. Nicole Greene says:

    I “LIKE” you on FB (Nicole Pitts)

  101. In the future, I would love to see Eat Well, Spend Less cover the idea of frozen vs. fresh fruits/ veggies. Does frozen cost less? Is it as nutritious?

  102. I joined you on Facebook!

  103. I would like to learn more about whole food cooking and weight loss cooking as well.

  104. Angela Sim-Laramee says:

    I would like to hear about whole foods – but simple quick meals – maybe ones that you can freeze.

  105. I would love to see some recipes for seasonal foods. The quicker the recipe is to make the easier it is for me to accomplish.

  106. Charlotte VanderBent says:

    Hello! I’d like to learn how to make baby foods from scratch.

  107. Sara Dickinson says:

    Low carb cooking would be awesome. I am already a fan of Krogers on FB

  108. I would love to see more big-batch cooking recipes (for freezing for later).

  109. More tips for freezing a variety of food.

  110. I am interested in cooking with seasonal items and specifically a variety of recipes to handle a “boat load” (aka. what to do with a wealth of tomatoes). It helps to have a few ideas up your sleeve, so the family doesn’t rebel.

  111. Just keep it coming with healthy, frugal food ideas!

  112. I plan a menu religiously, and we don’t eat a lot of meat, so I make sure to cook delicious meatless meals.

  113. simple, healthy meals that are a hit with picky kids!

  114. I think more meals as well as preserving, canning and freezer meals would be a great help. Especially using products that are in season.

    – Megan

  115. I would like to learn about making your own baby food.

  116. like Kroger on facebook

  117. like you on facebook

  118. Freezer cooking as well here…I need to get started on that with baby #4 due next month.

  119. I like Kroger on FB.

  120. I like Food for my Family on FB.

  121. To save money on REAL Food I always look for the Kroger Manager Specials on meats and veggies!!–FB Friend!!

  122. I would love to learn more about cooking with everyday ingredients that are cost effective, but I would already have at home

  123. I would love to see more about simple/quick and healthy options for busy families!

  124. I think it’s fantastic to use quality ingredients and shop for deals on organics etc, but I can’t afford to make some of the budget recipes that were posted… I would love to see a more intense focus on the “spend less” portion 🙂

  125. Also, I like Kroger on facebook

  126. And I like Food for my Family on facebook 🙂

  127. I would like more vegetable recipes and how to season/spice things up since I’m not very creative with veggie cooking.

  128. hmmmm… a topic to cover? maybe transitioning to buying less from a chain store and more directly from farmers? this is my ideal but I’m barely halfway there! Thanks for the giveaway!

  129. yes – recipes and canning/preserving!!!

  130. I follow you both and tweeted!

  131. I like you on FB!

  132. I like Kroger, too!

  133. Allison C says:

    I would love to see more meatless budget friendly recipes. Meals that are quick to prepare and healthy are also appreaciated.

  134. I would like to see more menu plans…i.e. two or three recipes (some to be frozen) using similar ingredients to avoid waste.

  135. Would love great recipes that kids will eat. Menu planning.

  136. I want to see some recipes for soups

  137. I’d love to see recipes that mix things up…especially when it comes to chicken!!

  138. I’d like to see homemade substitutes for ready made stuff–salad dressings, and such.

  139. I’d love to see more healthy meal planning ideas.

  140. Janet Krugel says:

    I have caught the end of this Eat Well, Spend Less, but I am so excited to get caught up!! My husband and I have been on a weight loss journey for the past year. I have lost 90 lbs and he has lost 160 lbs!!! We both have quite a way to go, but it’s been fun so far. We have just discovered the power of coupons and I have been trying to find the right network of blogs for me. I wondered when we began looking at coupons if we would be able to keep up our good eating habits with the coupons and this series is PERFECT!!

    How we save money (prior to discovering coupons): My husband works in the meat market at Brookshires and my stepmom is a Dept. Manager at Kroger. We find out about deals at both stores through those inside connections!! The trick is we have to have money when the special happens and that is not always easy for us. We have bought a LOT of markdown, almost out of date, meat over the past couple of years and it feels like we are at the mercy of people not buying something before it goes bad. Just in the past three weeks, we are getting better at the coupons and are having so much fun!!

    I am following all of the bloggers on this series now through email and when our computer gets out of the pawn shop (ugh!!) I will be following everyone on Facebook as well.

    God Bless You All!!!

  141. Recipes for freezer friendly meals and meals that keep when taking them to sick friends or new moms.

  142. I totally agree with the big-batch and freezer-friendly food topics! My freezer has become my best friend in the kitchen but I can always find new ways to stock pile! 🙂

  143. I would like to see tips about growing your own food 🙂 *Thanks* for the giveaway!

  144. Following @KrogerCo and @FoodforMyFamily on Twitter and Tweeted the giveaway

  145. I Like Kroger on Facebook

  146. I Like Food for My Family on Facebook

  147. Canning… soups, sauces, etc!

  148. More recipes!

  149. I just love all the info…keep it coming!

  150. D Wieland-Collett says:

    More of the same, please!

  151. Maybe more on eating (and preserving/canning) seasonally?

  152. Canning and bread making!!!

  153. Well, I just found your blog today, so I’m loving everything so far!

  154. I now follow both @krogerco and @foodformyfamily on twitter and I tweeted about your giveaway.

  155. I follow kroger on facebook

  156. Joined on facebook Food for My Family community on Facebook.

  157. I like to see some information about canning.

  158. I like Kroger on facebook.

  159. I like you on facebook.

  160. I would love more on gardening and canning. Thanks!

  161. Yay! I love free money, especially for food : )

  162. Jennifer P says:

    I would like to see healthy foods that make great leftovers.

  163. I’d like to learn how to can vegetables!

  164. def canning

  165. like Kroger on FB (gala ya)

  166. like you on FB (gala ya)

  167. Katherine says:

    I would love to see more info on year around or container gardening

  168. Rebecca R says:

    I would like to see more info on growing herbs indoors and canning/preserving tips.

  169. Now a fan on Facebook! Would love more ideas about cooking meals ahead and freezing so they actually still taste good!

  170. I need to learn canning, but I’m scared of it and could use all the help I could get!


    follow you and kroger on twitter (achrissmile)

  172. like” you on facebook (hannah knit)

  173. like” kroger on facebook (hannah knit)

  174. I love what you all are doing.. this is exactly the kind of info I need!

  175. I like your categories.
    The site is well rounded.

  176. Kroger Fb fan-Mary jaco

  177. I like you on FB-Mary Jaco

  178. How about how to eat well and spend less on organic foods and ingredients?

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