How Much Your Monthly Grocery Budget Should Be

If you're trying to save money on food, then one of the best ways to do that is to create a budget.

Mint, a budget tracking app, has come up with a food budget calculator to help you gauge how much you should be spending on groceries.

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Try This Free Grocery Budget Calculator

For guidance, Mint used the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) monthly food plan, which outlines nutritious meals at different cost levels based on dietary recommendations.

The calculator will prompt you to enter the following data:

  • Number of members in your household
  • Age of each household member
  • Gluten-free or meatless dietary needs for each household member
  • Number of meals each household member eats out (or orders from takeout) each week
After you enter the information, you’ll be shown two amounts that make up a moderate grocery budget:
  • A weekly grocery cost
  • A monthly grocery cost
To see other cost outcomes, Mint’s grocery budget calculator allows you to choose different lifestyles including “Thrifty,” “Cost-Conscious” and “Generous.”

How Much Should Your Monthly Grocery Budget Be?

Here is a chart from Mint that shows the monthly grocery budget it suggests. Compare the chart below to the total you got using the grocery budget calculator.

Family Size Suggested Monthly Budget
1 Person $251
2 People $553
3 People $722
4 People $892
When I put my information into the calculator, it said that my household should spend around $522 a month on food. That’s pretty good, considering that it’s a little cheaper than what the table suggests for a two people.

What about you? Is the monthly grocery budget for your family size higher than the amount listed above? If so, here are some ways you can save:

  1. Look for promotions on daily deals and coupon code sites.
  2. Choose store brand items over name brands.
  3. Download grocery apps that offer cash back on purchases.

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