How to Feed a Family of 3 for $80

I am always striving to eat healthier, for me and for my family. Our budget doesn’t always allow for the money it seems to take to buy random ingredients I haven’t always heard of for one tiny meal. Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for those awesome people who are up for finding new and obscure ingredients. I just don’t happen to be one of them, and my daughter is too picky about the food she eats for me to experiment too much with our meals. And in the interest of full disclosure, do I really have the time to spend hours in the kitchen? Nope.

So in an effort to manage my time and money well and not sacrifice our health in the process, I have implemented a few principles as well as a few staple meals to feed our family of three for just over $80. My tips are below along with my recipes and a full grocery list and meal planner that you can download!


1. Use coupons!

We shop primarily at Kroger (mainly because they have ClickList and, call me lazy, but I save tons of money by being able to compare prices online and save a lot of hissy fits when I’ve got my daughter with me). They offer coupons both digitally and in the mail as well as tons of savings in store. Take advantage of these! There are some awesome sites like and that will pull the best deals in your area for you. Even if you only save $5 using coupons, that’s $260 a year!!!

How to Feed a Family of 3 for $80: Coupons

2. Buy ingredients you can use over again.

We have a love affair with guacamole in this house. (You can check out my recipe here.)  Rather than waste an entire bunch of cilantro on one recipe of guac, I’ll be sure one or more of my lunch meals uses the remaining cilantro.  This applies to all of the foods you can’t buy just one of that won’t last more than a week or so.  If you are having tortillas for taco night, use the rest for wraps at lunch or quesadillas.  I know it seems obvious, but it really will save you money.


3.  Use online list tools.

As I mentioned before, we use Kroger’s ClickList to buy our groceries.  Another awesome feature Kroger offers is an online shopping list.  I save so much money when I don’t impulse buy, and using a digital list tool allows me to check things off my list as I go through the store.  There are plenty of apps out there to allow you to do this, or you could just use a paper list.  Either way, if you go in knowing exactly what you need, you won’t be as tempted by other things as you’re scanning the shelves (or just order online and there’s no temptation at all!).

So using the tips above, here is the breakdown of how I feed my family of three for $75.

How to Feed Your Family for $80: Online List Tools

Grocery List

  • 100% whole wheat tortillas ($1.19)
  • 1 pound local lean ground beef ($5.99)
  • 1 pound deli chicken breast ($9.99)
  • 3/4 pound deli colby cheese ($4.00)
  • 6 pounds organic frozen chicken ($13.98)
  • 3 organic sweet potatoes ($3.26)
  • 32 oz. organic vanilla yogurt ($2.79)
  • 8 oz shredded cheese ($2.29)
  • 12 large brown cage-free eggs ($3.69)
  • Traditional bacon ($3.28)
  • Instant oats ($1.99)
  • 3 pounds organic potatoes ($1.99)
  • 8 oz lightly salted cashews ($3.99)
  • 12 oz string cheese ($3.50)
  • 6 peaches ($3.54)
  • 1/2 gallon organic milk ($3.39)
  • 8 oz 1/3 less fat cream cheese ($1.50)
  • 12 oz frozen broccoli florets ($1.99)
  • Teriyaki sauce ($1.19)
  • 8 oz 90 second whole grain rice ($1.79)
  • Panko bread crumbs ($1.59)
  • Organic strawberries ($3.00)
  • 3 yellow corn on the cob ($1.00)
  • 4 organic bananas ($1.34)



I already had some items on hand that I needed, as well as veggies from our backyard garden, plus I used digital and paper coupons on a few items.

Salt & Life Blog Grocery ListTo download my free printable shopping list, click here.

Now that you have your groceries (and more money in your pocket), here are some of the recipes I use and our meal planner for the week.  To download the free meal planner, click here.

Weekly Meal Planner


Crockpot Chicken 3

Chicken, Potatoes & Zucchini

Chicken & Beef Taco Lettuce Wraps

  • brown beef or chicken in saute pan and add taco seasoning
  • fill lettuce leaf with meat, shredded cheese and any other toppings desired


Cream Cheese & Broccoli Stuffed Chicken {instead of ranch dressing and bacon, I use cream cheese}

Teriyaki Chicken

  • pan sear chicken in pan with teriyaki sauce, onion powder, salt and pepper to taste
  • add veggies on hand {we use zucchini most of the time, but frozen stirfry works great, too}
  • serve with minute rice




  • pour 1 tbsp olive oil in a pan
  • add 1 soft tortilla shell/wrap and top with shredded cheese and meat of choice
  • fold tortilla in half and heat for three minutes, flipping once
  • serve with sour cream and salsa


Zucchini Fries - Damn Delicious

Zucchini Fries

If you’d like more recipe ideas, we shared some here for those evenings when you have 15 minutes or less to prepare dinner!




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