Reader Food Diary: Lindsay’s Food & Spend

This guest post from Lindsay is part of our Reader Diaries Contest series.


Hi! My name is Lindsay. I live in Columbus, Ohio with my husband, Tom, and our three kids, Brody (7), Mia(5) and Ryder(2). We love to travel, visit new states, and go hiking. We eat the majority of our meals at home. Tom and I each pack a lunch for work five days a week and Brody and Mia pack 4 out of 5 days. We started our real food journey a few years ago when I stumbled upon the 100 Days of Real Food blog . We took the pledge and we have been going strong since!
Lindsay Real Food Diary Photo

My Reader Diary submission was selected to be featured so here is a list of everything I ate and spent on food for an entire week!

Day 1

Breakfast: Ricotta scrambled eggs with avocado, grapefruit, English Breakfast tea with honey.Ricotta Scrambled eggs with avocado, grapefruit
Lunch: Vegetable minestrone and an apple with peanut butter.
Snack: Apricot Fruit & Nuts.Fruit and Nuts Trader Joe's
Dinner: Veggie noodle soup and a simple side salad (lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, red wine vinegar and oil).Veggie Noodle Soup
Drinks: Water, Coffee with maple syrup and a splash of milk.
Groceries: $130.44 for family of 5

Day 2

Breakfast: Oatmeal with blueberries and English Breakfast Tea with honey.oatmeal with blueberries

Lunch: Salad from the salad bar (I teach at a middle school).
Snacks: Homemade pickle-flavored popcorn.homemade pickle flavored popcorn
Dinner: Lemon oregano chicken with a cucumber salad and roasted asparagus.Lemon Oregano Chicken with a cucumber salad and roasted asparagus
Lunch spend: $3.25 for lunch salad

Day 3

Breakfast: Bacon, avocado and cheddar omelet, grapefruit and a cup of English Breakfast Tea.grapefruit and omelet real food diary breakfast
Lunch: Salad topped with lemon oregano chicken and pumpkin chili with diced avocado.Salad topped with Lemon Oregano Chicken and pumpkin chili with diced avocado
Snack: Apricot Fruit & Nuts.
Dinner: Build your own taco bar.

Day 4

Breakfast: Oatmeal with warm strawberry and raspberry topping, English Breakfast tea with honey.Oatmeal with warm strawberry and raspberry topping
Lunch: Leftover tacos from dinner the night before.
Snack: Salt and pepper pistachios.Salt and pepper pistachios
Dinner: Apple maple chicken sausage (from a local farm), sautéed zucchini and a twice-baked potato.Apple maple chicken sausage (from a local farm), sautéed zucchini and twice-baked potato

Day 5

Breakfast: Scrambled eggs with ricotta.
Lunch: Leftover zucchini and sausage, leftover twice-baked potato, homemade applesauce. Leftover zucchini and sausage, leftover twice-baked potato, homemade applesauce
Snack: Homemade pickle-flavored popcorn.
Dinner: Roasted pork tenderloin with roasted Brussels sprouts and apples.

Day 6

Breakfast: Ricotta scrambled eggs with blood oranges, English Breakfast Tea with honey.Ricotta scrambled eggs with blood oranges
Lunch: Tortilla stew with blood oranges.
Snack: A handful of salt and pepper pistachios.
Dinner: Sandwiches from a local deli.

Dinner out: $39.67 for sandwiches for five people

Day 7

Breakfast: Buttermilk pancakes (a treat) and blood oranges and coffee with maple syrup and a splash of milk.Buttermilk pancakes (a treat) and blood oranges
Lunch: Leftover sandwiches from dinner the night before.
Snacks: Apricot Fruit & Nuts.
Dinner: Whole wheat spaghetti cacio and a salad with red onion, cucumber and blood orange slices.Whole wheat Spaghetti Cacio and a salad with red onion

Reader Diary: Final Thoughts

For the week, I spent $173.36 which included groceries for my family of 5 and a few meals out.

As I was keeping track, I realized how repetitive my meals and snacks are. When we grocery shop, we typically just shop for dinner items and then eat leftovers for lunch. It makes packing lunch relatively easy. We also make soup once a week and then freeze the leftovers so that we have something quick to throw in our lunches. I got a few different cookbooks for Christmas and I am currently cooking my way through them. Four of the dinner recipes were new to me and they are all keepers. I would also, like to add that we get our meat from a local farm. We receive a delivery of frozen meat once a month. It’s roughly $100/month. I did not include that in my food diary because we are in week 3 of our current meat supply. If I added in the meat that we used it would make our total around $225.

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