Grocery Shopping on a Budget – What do You Spend?

We all do it. Whether it’s the New Year or tax season, there comes a time when we take a step back to look at our finances from the previous year and vow to do better in the future. We want to spend less, save more, and do a better job at paying attention to where our money is going on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis.

Let’s take food costs for example. A large part of everyone’s monthly income is spent on food and grocery shopping on a budget can be challenging. The amount of money you budget for food each week or month can depend on a variety of factors including income and family size. For starters, knowing what the average American spends on food each week and month can help you determine the best budget for you and your family. The Official USDA Food Plans chart below shows average weekly and monthly at-home food costs during February of 2015 for four different cost levels (thrifty plan, low-cost plan, moderate-cost plan and liberal plan).

2015 average food cost

While it’s easy to look at this chart (or other budgeting tools like and commit to a weekly and monthly at-home food budget (i.e. Low-Cost Food Plan for a family of 2 – male & female ages 19-50) and tell yourself you’re only going to spend $115.40/week and $500.10/month, sticking to your goal on a day-to-day basis is the challenging part.

So I wanted to share 5 simple steps to help you stick to your personal weekly and monthly budget by way of my husband’s financial technology application, Tellur!

What's Tellur

Tellur is a financial notification system that allows you to create customer financial email alerts to fit your personal spending and saving needs. Alerts notify you in of financial transactions in real time to help you achieve small financial goals as part of your larger budget resolutions. Their unified platform has the ability to integrate all of your financial accounts (checking, savings, credit cards, and retirement funds) to alert you when you spend and send you encouraging notifications when you save. You can learn more at About Tellur.

Ok back to grocery budgeting…


a basket of vegetables with a calculator

5 Simple Steps to Stick to Your Weekly and Monthly Grocery Budget:

With Tellur’s customized email notification system, you can keep track of your grocery budget and be reminded of how the spending decisions you make each day affect your overall weekly and monthly goals. I’ve created a “Grocery Spending” recipe <- I love that this is what they call each custom-built alert! on Tellur that sends you an email every time your credit card (or debit card) is charged with a grocery purchase. This notification also provides you with an update of how much money you have spent so far this week and this month on groceries. And the best part is, I’ve shared the recipe on so that all of you can use it (and customize it!) for yourself! Here’s how:


1. Go to – specifically this link. Click the ADD button.

healthy eating on a budget


2. The site will prompt you to sign in to your Tellur account. If you don’t have an account, don’t worry – click Not Registered? – which will take you through the simple registration process. Once registered you’ll need to connect your accounts (credit card or debit card) so Tellur knows which accounts and transactions to follow (all of your security questions are answered here). Follow this easy Add Account tutorial to identify the credit or debit card you use to purchase groceries.

healthy eating on a budget


3. Once registered, add the Grocery Spending recipe – if you’ve lost your way in the registration process, here is the Grocery Spending recipe link again. Click ADD.

healthy eating on a budget


4. Click CUSTOMIZE and edit the recipe so that it’s linked to the credit card that you use for purchasing groceries.

healthy eating on a budget

Then you can edit the message to reflect your weekly and monthly goals.

healthy eating on a budget


5. Click save and your done!

healthy eating on a budget


You will now receive an email each time a grocery transaction hits your credit card. It will look something like this:

healthy eating on a budget

Now you can keep track each and every day of your grocery spending without losing site of your overall monthly budget goals! Time to stock your pantry with healthy staples and pick out some winter produce to get cooking!


Create more custom notifications for all of your other financial needs at



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