Grocery Shopping on a Budget: For 2-3

Sample grocery list for penny pinchers and money savers.

Over the next few weeks we’ll look at how Des Plaines residents have been cutting back on spending, and we’ll show you three grocery budgets that can help save a few dollars every month.

George Hernandez, 34, of Des Plaines, does the majority of the grocery shopping in his home. His family is small, but busy. His wife works in downtown Chicago, his son attends Iroquois Community School and Hernandez works from home in contract computer support.

Hernandez said having an in-home office has given him an opportunity to take on more of the household tasks, which included developing a bi-weekly budget.


Hernandez said he paid more attention to what the family was eating so that items weren’t continually going to waste.

“If you spend $200 every two weeks on food, and you notice that at least 25 percent of that food is only feeding your trash can, somewhere along the line you overspent,” Hernandez said.

Hernandez is not alone. Feeding America, a non-profit, hunger relief organization, reports much food and groceries go to waste.

Plan Ahead Grocery List

If you plan your list in advance you can stick to a set budget and avoid making wasteful purchases. This sample grocery list for two or three people for under $60 a week is an example of products that can be prepared or frozen and make the most of your money.

Share your money-saving tips for grocery shopping in the comments below.

Sample grocery list for 2-3 people:

  • Loaf of bread/$2
  • Two cartons of eggs/$3
  • Pound of strawberries/$2
  • Pound of apples/$2
  • Pound of oranges/$2
  • Frozen blueberries or fruit medley/$3
  • Oatmeal/$2
  • Two pounds of potatoes/$3
  • Two stalks of broccoli/$2
  • Pound of tomatoes/$1.50
  • Frozen peas/$1
  • Frozen corn/$1
  • Frozen onions/$1
  • Frozen carrots/$1
  • Flour tortillas/$1
  • Box of spaghetti/$1
  • Two pounds of chicken breasts/$5
  • Pound of flour/$2
  • Pound of sugar/$2
  • Two pounds of hamburger/$4
  • Mozzarella cheese/$3
  • Plain yogurt/$2
  • Two gallons of milk/$5
  • Margarine/$1.50
  • Box of elbow macaroni/$1.50
  • Five cans of tomato sauce/$4

Total: $59.50

There are a number of recipes you can whip up using items from this list, mixed with a things you already have around the house. Here’s one example of a full-day menu:


Tortilla Wrap: A healthy breakfast snack that can be paired with some fresh fruit and taken on the go!


Chicken Breast Sandwich: You can grab a salad for a side and enjoy a meal that's healthy and thrifty!


Macaroni Casserole: Whether you decide to make this with meat or not, this can be a filling dish, great to eat with corn, carrots or peas. 

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