£20 Grocery Challenge | Planning

Categories Featured, Food
£20 grocery challenge

Hi guys, those of you who have been with me for a while will recall that I’ve already done one £20 grocery challenge. That was back in January, can you believe that?! It was a success, it seemed to go down well and I stuck within my budget. However, like anything, you do something again and you improve.  

I’ve had an idea to repeat the experience for a while but I was a little put off by some trends this year. There was that awful living off a £1 video and then a wash of ridiculous challenges on YouTube such as ‘Living off the cheapest food for 24 hours’. That isn’t a challenge, it’s a very real life for a lot of people and I want to be considerate of that. Those videos all offended a lot of people, and I was nervous to do something of a similar nature. But this is different. Not everything I’m eating is the absolute cheapest thing you can buy, I’m doing this with health in mind. I’m trying to live healthily and affordably and as close to how I would normally eat as possible.  

My grocery list post will be itemised with everything I bought as well as an explanation. I thought it was better to explain why I got certain things than to just list them. 

Why now? 

As I said, the last time I did this was back in January. I chose to do it in January because a lot of people try to tighten their purse strings after Christmas. However, a lot of people also live on a tighter budget running up to Christmas, got to have money to buy those gifts after all. And I know a lot of you are still students and I’m guessing that September loan is pretty much gone now. If not, it was gone a while ago. That’s why I’m choosing to do this one now rather than a January repeat.  


Last time, I’m going to be honest, I think I did it the wrong way. I tried to eat as close to how I normally would, badly. I’ve mentioned before that I don’t have a huge appetite. I prefer to snack on smaller things like handfuls of nuts here and there throughout the day rather than eating three square meals. So, last time I bought things like nuts and bars. That took up a huge chunk of my budget. I follow a vegan and mainly gluten free diet and last time in order to have my snacks, I could only afford to get gluten containing products. Looking back, I have no idea why I did it like that.  

This time, it’s going to be all vegan and gluten free and I’m going to make actual meals and sacrifice my snacks. At the end of the day, I can still eat smaller amounts at a time if I don’t have an appetite. It’s not like I can’t reheat things if I have to.  

Meal planning 

I feel like I’m cheating writing this now because I have already bought my groceries for the week. Last time, when I was planning my meals I simply sat down and thought of dishes I could make with cheap ingredients. Nutritionally, this wasn’t the best plan. It wasn’t the best plan economically either. This time, I made a list of cheap protein sources, like lentils and chickpeas. Then I made a list of potential meals I could make from those. I planned my shopping online, so it was easy to keep track of my running total. Once I’d settled on my protein options, I added whatever vegetables I could afford. My vegetable choices were a little plain as I wanted to get more versatile options that could go in a few dishes. But we’ll soon see how that goes. 

My next post is going to be my full grocery list. It also includes a rough idea of the meals I’m planning on making with my ingredients. Before then, I don’t think I’m giving too much away when I say my food for the week was £19.95. And I’m pretty sure I have more than enough. Are you excited to see what I got? You can see my grocery list post on Thursday. 

Until next time,  


29 thoughts on “£20 Grocery Challenge | Planning

  1. I can’t wait to see what you got! This seems like it took a lot of planning but honestly you’ll help so many people, like you said living off £1 a day can be reality for some and it sickened me to hear about all those Youtube videos (I didn’t even watch one because I knew I’d get angry). The food shopping bill always shocks me when I go with my Mom so with us planning to get our own place soon it’ll be good to see the best things to get on a budget!

    Jess // foundationsandfairytales.wordpress.com

  2. can’t wait to see what you got! the way you explained it sounds like a good way for those on a budget to learn from. and i don’t mean that in the way those youtube videos came across. but more so help teach those how to spend efficiently instead of just going in and grabbing whatever they feel off the shelf or just enough food for one day when they can actually afford to shop for the whole week. that’s something I need to get better on. can’t wait to come back thursday! xx

    mich / simplymich.com

  3. This sounds like it will be a really helpful challenge to encourage people to eat healthy in an affordable way. I know I sometimes struggle to make the right choices when I am out food shopping. I’m really looking forward to seeing what you have brought and what dishes you make! <3 xx

    Bexa | http://www.hellobexa.com

  4. Looking forward to seeing how it goes and to see what you got. It’s really good how you planned it out and make sure that you were able to still get the nutrients you need like your proteins. It would be really good as well if you did a few recipes for the meals you do for this. It would be really good to read and try something new too!

  5. This is such a great ‘challenge’ to do and super interesting! considering that your vegan and gluten free I’m interested to see what you bought/what your making because i know, at least where i live, that anything gluten free is crazily expensive. Excited to see you do this! xx

  6. I’m looking forward to seeing what you got, I remember seeing all those YouTube videos about living on a £1 for a day, and it was such a silly idea! I always plan my meals now, every week I’ll write down my meals and all the ingredients I need and then put in the online order, it always saves me money because otherwise I’m just ordering whatever I like the look of online and when it all gets delivered I think, so what meals have I actually got aha. Interested to hear about your meal plans!!

    Chloe xx

  7. oo would love to see your next post, this sounds like an interesting challenge! I don’t go looking for gluten free items but as far as I know, they are quite pricey in my supermarket!

  8. I’m also a huge fan of smaller meals throughout the day, so I’m super interested in how you’ll make it work with standard meal sizes and on this budget as well!

  9. I’m really looking forward to seeing the grocery list and whether you are able to achieve your goal. This is such a great idea and you’re definitely right, those YouTube videos did offend so many people! Thanks for sharing.

  10. This is such an interesting challenge, and I can’t wait to see what your grocery shopping list looks like tomorrow. You can tell you’ve gone into it having done you research, and having thought enough about the people it might help, which is what I feel a lot of those controversial videos are missing. I know I’d definitely be guilty of doing what you did in January if I were to try this challenge, so I really admire you for being able to try and shop while sticking to your diet and budget at the same time. I think people have always perceived vegan diets to be expensive so I can’t wait to see how you’ve worked around this.

    Rebekah Gillian | https://rebekahgillian.co.uk/

  11. The way you planned this is great! I’m actually going to give that a try in my weekly shop this week. It’s kind of like working backwards in a way. Can’t wait to see your next post on this!

    Hannah | hannahslifediaries.com

  12. I can’t believe it was in JANUARY!? Almost an entire year, that’s bloody mental. I really enjoyed your last challenge so I’m definitely looking forward to this and how you manage to do it. I’m definitely going to need things like this for when I move out as we’re going to be poor as hell, haha!
    Alice Xx

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