November 7, 2012

Eating at Whole Foods for $100 a Week & Grocery Giveaway {Naptime Everyday}

Whole Foods Fairfield

Feeding my family from Whole Foods Market for $100 a week was not easy but we managed to do it. After my tour of our local store I learned all the ways to save while shopping and devised a menu plan to fit the deals that were available that week. I also had to make a few assumptions in order to make the budget work. I did not buy basic staples like olive oil, salt, pepper, basic spices, and flour since we already had them on hand. I generally don’t shop for them weekly anyway. I did not include lots of beverages in our budget since we usually drink water, iced tea (made from scratch), milk, and hot tea. My daughter does not like juice therefore I rarely, if ever, buy it. Finally, my husband eats his lunches at work and was on a business trip one night so I did not include his meal costs on the nights he didn’t eat with us.

WFM Fairfield

To ensure a healthy organic menu for the week I did my best to buy vegetables in bulk, pay attention to deals and coupons, and use the bulk foods section in order to make it work. The menu I devised was definitely different than our usual weekly eats because I stretched our limited grocery haul to the very limit – forgoing variety in favor for frugality. While I normally might be inclined to freeze leftover chicken or let extra onions languish in the crisper, this week I used every little bit I bought. I also skipped my favorite impulse purchases like delicious cheeses, containers of marcona almonds, or jars of fancy looking pasta sauces and salad dressings. Keeping everything simple and cooked from scratch was definitely the name of the game and, you know what, it was delicious.  Here is what I made:


Breakfast: Overnight Steel Cut Oat Loaf with maple syrup, hot tea.

Lunch: Peanut Butter Jelly Sandwich for my daughter, 365 Everyday Value Pretzels, Omelet with Sharp Cheddar for me.

Dinner: Chef’s Prepared Meatballs with Spaghetti with 365 Everyday Value Marinara Sauce, Broccoli (two heads for $5 in the the madness sale).

Snack: Popcorn popped in the microwave in a brown bag with a pinch of salt, 2 apples


Breakfast: Steel Cut Oat Loaf with a sprinkle of turbinado sugar, hot tea.

Lunch: Yogurt, Toast with Cream Cheese & Homemade Apricot Jam365 Everyday Value Mac & Cheese for my daughter (only 99-cents per box!)

Dinner: Rotisserie Chicken #1 with Butternut Squash Risotto (made from box mix on sale), Pre-Sliced Squash tossed with olive oil and salt

Snack: More Yogurt (they were 5 for $5 on sale), Cinnamon Toast


Breakfast: Final morning of Overnight Steel Cut Oat Loaf, hot tea.

Lunch: Scrambled Eggs on Toast with drizzle of olive oil and pinch of sea salt, rest of 365 Everyday Value Mac & Cheese for my daughter

Dinner: Rotisserie chicken #2, 365 Everyday Value Egg Noodles, second head of Broccoli prepared with a pinch of kosher salt, red pepper, and olive oil.

Snack: Homemade Microwave Popcorn, Handfuls of granola (a small bag bought in bulk section)


Breakfast: Oven Baked Frittata with frozen chopped baby spinach (thawed), hot tea, 365 Everyday Value Cereal with Milk

Lunch: Daughter eats lunch at a playdate, I grab the sandwich deal at Whole Foods Market – 1 sandwich, chips, drink for $7.99.

Dinner: Slow Cooker Herbs de Provence Chicken & Rice Soup to use up the last of the rotisserie chickens.

Snack: Last Yogurt containers


Breakfast: 365 Everyday Cereal, Bananas (which have finally ripened)

Lunch:  Peanut Butter Sandwiches, Pretzels

Dinner: Shrimp (bought on Madness sale) with the rest of Spaghetti in a simple white wine butter sauce, remaining Pre-Sliced Squash

Snack: Apple Slices with Peanut Butter


Breakfast: Pancakes using my homemade pancake mix, banana

Lunch:  A very basic French Onion Soup made with remaining Sharp Cheddar broiled on toast.

Dinner: Date night! Leave a Frozen Pizza and pre-made tossed salad for the babysitter and my daughter.

Snack: Homemade Banana Bread


Breakfast: Eggs with Soldiers, Hot Tea

Lunch: Leftover Slow Cooker Herbs de Provence Chicken & Rice Soup

Dinner: Not in the mood to cook, prepare an oven-ready Eggplant Parmesan from the prepared foods section, side of Acorn Squash (on sale all week)

Snack: Rest of Homemade Banana Bread

Whole Foods Temptation at Checkout

Temptation at the register!

For a chance to feed your family from Whole Foods Market enter to win at $100 Whole Foods Gift Card:

1) Leave a comment sharing your favorite way to budget when shopping at Whole Foods Market for your family.

2) Subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

3) Subscribe to The Naptime Chef Newsletter on the upper left side of the screen.

4) Contest runs from November 7th at 7am through November 14th at 7am. Winner will be announced in the November 16th newsletter.

  • Jennifer

    I find their 365 brand to be really affordable. I also watch my local store’s Twitter feed for special deals. Their circular also helps to shape my shopping list each week!

  • I watch for store specials.

  • I subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

  • I already subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

  • I always look for their sale items and buy their store brand, 365 products.


  • I Subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook (Kelly D)

  • I subscribe to your newsletter under kellywcuATyahooDOTcom

  • I love to shop from the bulk bins for grains and beans. it really can be easy to shop Whole Foods on a budget.

  • Jenn B.

    I plan out meals in advance to a degree, make my list, but leave room for whatever meats, fruits, and veggies are on sale. I also buy one rotisserie chicken there per week which I use for several meals. I try to make one thing on the weekend in a large quantity (soup, stew, or chili) that we can enjoy for one meal and freeze for two more. Their 365 brand is also key to my savings success, and the quality is excellent!

  • Meighan

    i subscribe. and i don’t buy any prepacked products-overpriced!

  • Melinda Ott

    I find that the 365 store brand at Whole foods is usually a great buy.

  • Melinda Ott

    I’ve already subscribed to you on Facebook.

  • Melinda Ott

    I’ve already subscribed to your newsletter

  • vaishali

    I tend to buy a lot of 365 stuff!

  • Laura M.

    Always look for what’s on sale!! 🙂

  • Laura M.

    I’m already following you on Facebook.

  • Laura M.

    Already subscribed to your newsletter. 🙂

  • Nicole-Lynn

    My favorite way to stay within budget while grocery shopping is shopping the sales!

  • Nicole-Lynn

    I subscribe via email

  • Sarah H.P.

    I subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook!

  • Sarah H.P.

    I subscribe to The Naptime Chef Newsletter!

  • Susan

    Well, we’re still waiting for a WF here in Albany….will go right down the street from TJ’s apparently.

  • I subscribe to their newsletter so I get emails when they meat & fish goes on sale at my local store!

  • And I already subscribe to your email newsletter! (

  • Ilona t

    Love using the coupons!

  • Blissmamaof3

    My favorite way to budget at whole foods is avoid the prepared foods in the deli and the hot bar and stear clear of prepared dairy items like ricotta cheese, creme fraiche, ice cream and even yogurt that I can easily make myself. The gallons of milk are much cheaper.

  • meredith

    Whole foods has coupons! I try to save on my favorites and avoid the really pricy stuff I dont need.

  • meredith

    Im a facebook subscriber!

  • meredith

    I subscribed to your newsletter

  • Adelaide

    I keep my pantry stocked with essentials as well as my crisper – we always have chicken stock, canned tomatoes, pasta, onions, garlic, carrots, ginger, rice, cheese, tortillas, etc. on hand for quick soups, fried rice, stir frys and pasta dishes. Very affordable on a night when I can’t make it to the store – and less expensive!

  • dlhaley

    The way I budget is to not go food shopping hungry. I also look for sale items and use coupons.

  • dlhaley

    I like Kelsey Banfield on FB. Donna Haley

  • dlhaley

    Email subscriber

  • Sara

    I don’t get sucked in by the packaged convenience food. I stick to my list and buy the staples we need so I can make delicious food at home.

  • Heather Hicks

    I like to shop in the bulk section for beans, nuts, flours, and spices so I can only buy what we need. There’s only 2 of us at home so big packages usually get wasted,

  • Sheila K.

    I make a list and stick to it!

  • Pat

    I use the $10 off of $50 coupon that comes in our neighborhood newspaper.

  • Corky

    I always look for sales and have a menu idea planned for the week..I try to buy bulk, and make enough something(rice, noodles etc..) to carry over to another meal!..

  • Corky

    I am already a this!

    • Corky

      I am Corinne Kurzmann on FB

  • stephanie Hules

    I love whole foods. I get their emails and check the weekly ad when putting together my meal plan so I can budget and get more for my family. Healthy eating and organic foods are very important for me.
    I would love to win! Thank you

    Stephanie @

  • Corky

    I am an email subscriber already!

  • stephanie Hules

    I am subscribed on facebook!

  • Corky

    seems my first post didn’t post..sorry..I try to buy in bulk and I also cook enough to use for another meal..rice, pasta, etc..great for nacho night or burritos…stretch as far as I can!!

  • stephanie Hules

    I am subscribed to your newsletter!

  • Heather

    Store brand all the way! They also have great coupons and deals most weeks.

  • Heather

    Already following on FB.

  • Heather

    Already a newsletter subscriber as well.

  • I’m subscribed on Facebook.

  • I’m subscribed to the newsletter.

  • Nancy L

    Already a newsletter subscriber.

  • Nancy L

    I try to buy what’s on sale for what I am going to use that week. Store brands also save money.

  • Nancy L

    I follow you on Facebook.

  • Kara Silanskis

    I start with sale items in produce, then bulk, and fill in the rest from there! I’m already a newsletter and Facebook subscriber. 🙂

  • Laura scott

    Shopping for sale items!

  • I budget shop at Whole Foods by buying sale items and store brands.

  • I am a newsletter subscriber.

  • I follow you on Facebook.

  • Leesy

    the 365 brand is often cheaper than similar products at the regular grocery store!

  • Leesy

    i am a newsletter subscriber!

  • I lack the time and energy for active coupon clipping, but I do tend to look through available offers, when I have the time. I tend to look for a protein on sale, and build meals around that throughout the week, using pantry staples for the cheaper carbs, with seasonal vegetables from the produce aisle. One of my favourite sides is a warm couscous salad scattered with colourful vegetables, that goes down well at our house. It works really well with salmon or chicken breast, or with a pre-planned use of legumes, can provide a complete protein on its own, and it’s all dependent on affordable seasonal produce.

  • Kristin Terrill

    When I shop at Whole Foods I try to plan my family’s meals around what is on sale, then splurge on 1 or 2 big ticket items that I can use in many of the weeks recipes. I also try to make at least 1 meal a week that will feed us for 2 nights. I will admit, I spend more than $100 a week on groceries. Healthy, organic foods are something I feel is worth spending the money on, esp. when it comes to feeding my children.

  • Kristin

    I meal plan around what is on sale and buy only from list. Also try to do a meat free meal as least once a week as beans and eggs are much cheaper source of protein.

  • Monique S.

    I plan with what is on sale and what is in the fridge, in hopes that nothing goes to waste. Eggs are a staple in the house.

  • Jennifer

    I love the 365 products. They are good quality and affordable. Stick to those and the specials and WF is a super cost-friendly store.

  • cynthia

    I love Whole Foods, but as you stated, it’s not easy, so meal planning ahead is essential!

  • cyndi

    I buy the 365 WF products, and watch for sales, it’s imperative that you work off your pantry
    and staples with your meal planning. Get organized if you want to save $$

  • cyndi

    i get your newsletter

  • allegra

    I find that going on the web and finding economical recipes and meal planning is the way to go. Check out sales for staples.

  • allegra

    I love your newsletter

  • JennyWhite

    I go to Whole Foods when I visit my parents in Raleigh, don’t have one in my town. Would love to go more often and love this blog post. I have had to cut down on my grocery budget to $100 a week. Some weeks even less. There’s no way I could do it if I didn’t do as much homecooking and pre-planning as I do. It’s hard to eat healthy and organic/unprocessed with so little $$! Thanks for all your tips and ideas.

  • hipchic2

    I like to stock up on the frozen meat and fish when on sale. Having those available whenever I need them allows me to finish off fresh stuff in the fridge and make meals with good meats.

  • Stacy Schuck

    Vegetables and fruits on sale and the bulk section! (I’m already a newsletter n two email addresses and FB subscriber.)

  • Risa

    I make sure I am we’ll aware of what I have in the way of staples, then shop with my mind open in regards to menu so I can maximize what’s on sale or reasonably priced.

  • Definitely by shopping specials and whats in season – knowing what’s on special before you go in allows you to plan you whole week around what cheap, organic and local.

  • I subscribe to your newsletter

  • I subscribed to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

  • Jacqui

    My favorite way to budget is buying their 365 brand! I have never been disappointed with the products!

  • Jacqui

    I am subscribed to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook

  • Jacqui

    I am subscribed to the Naptime Chef newsletter already

  • I buy seasonal fruits and veggies because they are cheaper.

  • I subscribe to your newsletter

  • I like you on Facebook

  • Julie

    Buying 365 brands, bulk section, bring my price book to know what it a good deal

  • Julie

    I like you on Facebook

  • Julie

    I get the newsletter

  • Sam

    Love using coupons and sticking to my shopping list.

  • i always stick to my list when shopping

  • newsletter subscriber

  • Kim R

    I use a list of staples needed but I don’t formulate meals until I am there and I can see what is good as a deal as well as looking in good shape, too. I don’t buy pre made anything but I do buy my staples there. We are a whole foods, organic family and I couldn’t imagine trying to do it without WholeFoods. Get to know the store. Like any grocery store, the more familiar you are the more mentally organized you are.

  • LinDCR

    I shop from sale to sale, filling in special ingredients when necessary.

    I always try to cook from my stored items and from current sales.

  • get their 365 brand items and check yourself if you really need something

  • sent friend request to Kelsey Banfielf

  • email subscriber already

  • Christina C

    I shop at Whole Foods all the time because there is one across the street from my home. I save money using WF coupons from their website, buying 365 brand, and buying on sale.

  • Christina C

    I’m your fan on FB (christina cosman)

  • Alice

    I love using the weekly sales to help budget, plus I like to eat seasonally, so it really jives with how I shop and feed my family 🙂

  • Alice

    I Subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

  • Alice

    I Subscribe to The Naptime Chef Newsletter

  • I save money by crafting my meal plans around their specials! Also by buying in bulk (grains, nuts, honey…) 🙂

  • And I subscribe on Facebook!

  • And I’m on your mailing list!

  • Barbara Ann

    I subscribe to the Naptime Chef newsletter.

  • Barb

    I subscribe on Facebook.

  • Barb

    I buy what’s on sale.

  • Jane

    I subscribed on Facebook!

  • Jane

    I subscribe to the newsletter already!

  • Jane

    I budget shop by buying in bulk, sales, and make a list/plan before I shop.

  • Cajun Gourmet

    I dont always go to Whole Foods to grocery shop because I find it a little pricey for me, but when I go there its usually for a specific item that I cant find anywhere else. BUT.. I would love to be able to afford going there occasionally & with that $100, I know I would be in heaven…
    I love just browsing & looking at all the variety of products..

  • latanya

    buy when things are on sale

  • latanya

    I Subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

  • latanya

    newsletter subscriber

  • Rochelle

    I use their online coupons before I shop. Thanks!

  • Rochelle

    Current email subscriber

    romapup at gmail dot com

  • Rochelle

    Subscriber to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook under Rochelle Martin

  • Erin Cochrane

    I subscribe via google reader!

  • Erin Cochrane

    I am a facebook fan!

  • Erin Cochrane

    budgeting for me works best if I plan ahead for the weeks meals and then stick to the plan. this ensures nothing goes to waste as well!

  • amy

    My favorite way to save money at Whole Foods is to buy from the bulk section.

  • amy

    I’m also subscribed to your newsletter!

  • lindseh

    My fiance and I don’t have a car, so we shop at Whole Foods because of convenience (it’s across the street). I buy produce as I use it (and get what’s on sale/in season) to reduce waste. I also buy bulk dry goods and make from scratch when possible (ie hummus).

  • I shop the sales! Always look at the circular before I go in, and create my meals around whatever is on sale.

  • Also subscribed!

  • I get the newsletter too 🙂

  • My favorite way to budget when shopping at Whole Foods Market is to shop the bulk grains and beans section.

  • I plan my meals around what is on sale or in season.

  • I subscribe on Facebook. (Marcia Goss)

  • I subscribe to the newsletter.

  • Tiffany

    I shop the sales but also buy a lot of the 365 Everyday Values, which really are a good deal!

  • Emily

    Coupons and Sale items

  • Miranda

    I make a flexbile meal plan, then see what’s on sale.

  • Miranda

    FB follower

  • Miranda


  • Marita Perez

    Coupons and sale items

  • Kathleen Conner

    I buy what’s on sale and build our menu around that. I’m spending a little more time now thinking about cooking with dry beans, as it seems we could save some money there!

  • Kathleen Conner

    Subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

  • Kathleen Conner

    Subscribed to The Naptime Chef Newsletter

  • John Billiris

    We shop the sales, and use coupons. When there’s a really good deal, we stock up a bit!

  • John Billiris

    Subscribe to Kelsey Banfield on Facebook.

  • John Billiris

    already Subscribe to The Naptime Chef Newsletter

  • Whenever I am in a pinch, I check out the WF Value Meals. You get an entree and salad for $14.99 and, even after feeding my family of 5, still have leftovers for lunch the next day! Truly a bargain when feeding 3 hungry boys (4 including Jim).

    • alissa

      wow, where do you live? in seattle it’s $19.99 (or on some days $17.99 for sale)

  • Rose Marie

    Wow – your Whole Foods is huge – I’ve been asking my local Whole Foods to add a 2nd floor! My FAV way to budget when shopping at Whole Foods is to watch the sales, to use their great coupons, and also comparison shop. Many items are cheaper there than at the grocery store, if you get savvy about prices & quality.

  • Jennifer

    I use coupons and buy in bulk!

  • Stephanie

    Love to use the 365 brand for staples and look out for sales!

  • april v

    coupons, coupons, coupons!

  • april v


  • Rose Marie

    I like to eat “low on the foodchain.” It is healthy, and often very inexpensive. Load up on beans (make your own), grains (luv experimenting), starchy vegetables such as various potatoes inc sweet potato. I like to make my own tortillas with masa harina. I buy many different whole flours and seeds and make my own crackers (adding a small amount of herbs or other interesting but not expensive ingredients). I have found consuming quality carbohydrates is very satisfying and filling and I don’t feel hungry again in a couple of hours.

  • TaraO

    I definitely take advantage of the bulk bins at Whole Foods!