Our 17 year old was the first one to shop for his week of food. Since he can drive, he did the shopping solo. We decided to let him share a few items with a sibling to be able to pay decent prices. Those items were: a gallon of milk, a pound of butter and a 24 ounce bottle of vegetable oil. He’ll use only half of each. (Note the Sharpie lines down the middle of these items! 🙂 )
Since some of our own grocery savings comes from our garden, we also decided to let each teen pick one pint and one quart of home-canned food from our pantry. He chose a quart of tomatoes and a pint of grape jelly. His food total ended up being $20.88, which displeased him a bit. (The ground beef ended up costing more than he realized.) But I think he did pretty well for his first solo shopping trip ever.
When he got home, the other kids spent quite a few minutes looking over his items and asking him what he’d paid for each. It was fun to listen to the conversation.
I plugged his food items into a cool calorie counting website and discovered he’d bought enough food to eat 4,000 calories per day. I think that should be adequate, even on the days he exercises for an hour. The site gave his food list a B+ in nutrition overall. In the screen shot you can see that I listed the week’s worth of ingredients and then divided it into 7 servings to get an average calorie count per day. Here’s the breakdown, and a picture of his receipts. I think he did a great job.
His dinner last night was a huge plateful of french fries, which all the kids looked at longingly while they ate their pork and veggie stir-fry. His initial plan had been split peas and rice, but he didn’t start cooking in time for that to work, so he had to fall back on french fries since that was quicker.
The week will definitely be an eye-opener for all the kids when it comes to meal planning and the amount of prep it takes to get food on the table in a timely manner. This morning his breakfast was oatmeal. I made oatmeal for the rest of us too, to be companionable. And this morning he’s already made two loaves of french bread to eat throughout the week. I’d say he’s well on his way to making this work!