Wednesday, October 15, 2014

SNAP Challenge - Day Three

Last day of the SNAP Challenge and I went into today just hoping to not skip meals and not try to substitute snacks for meals. It has been much, much harder than I expected to be able to eat a complete diet on such a low food budget for the day. It really would be a heck of a lot easier to just microwave some EasyMac and call it a day, but I'm pretty sure that stuff gives you Ebola.

Too soon for Ebola jokes?  Noted.

Ahem.'s how things went on the last day of the challenge! (Please don't write me nasty comments for my poor taste in humor. I'm well aware that I'm not all that funny and sometimes horribly inappropriate.)

Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs, Avocado, English Muffin: $0.75
  • 2 scrambled eggs: 0.25
  • 1/2 avocado: 0.25
  • spoonful of salsa: 0.05
  • Whole wheat English muffin: 0.20 

This breakfast was delicious. I chopped up the other 1/2 of the avocado from Day 2 and paired it with a low-cal wheat English muffin.  Of course, I had to eat it cold because Day 3 happened to fall on a school morning when I was trying to get all three kids' lunches packed, pants on, shoes tied, backpacks stuffed, breakfasts eaten, syrup scrubbed off faces, and coats zipped. I'm not sure if I actually remember tasting any of my breakfast, but at least I remembered to take a photo of it! 

Lunch: Honey Crisp Apple with peanut butter: 0.80

  • Apple: 0.50
  • 2 tablespoons of peanut butter: 0.30

Not a huge lunch, I realize. But I got in some protein, so I'm going to call it good!

Dinner: Turkey Leftovers Sandwich: $1.25

  • Deli Turkey: 0.40
  • 1/2 roasted red bell pepper: 0.25
  • 1/2 avocado: 0.25
  • Baby Spinach: 0.15
  • 2 sliced wheat bread: 0.20

I used the leftover roasted red bell pepper from last night's chicken sandwich and the rest of the avocado from breakfast to make a really delicious grilled sandwich for dinner. I used the lean turkey I bought on my little grocery shopping trip along with the fresh baby spinach and used the mashed avocado as the glue to hold it all together. I grilled it in a skillet on the stove-top and I was really pleased with the result. 

Snacks and Beverages: $0.30

Since I came in a full $1 under budget after my meals, I splurged a bit and helped myself to a can of Diet Pepsi and a little air popped popcorn with sea salt for a snack. That added about another $0.30 to my total because the last time we bought soda we scored a sweet deal at Target of four 12-packs for $9.  

Total for Day 3: $3.10

Thus ends the SNAP Challenge. What have we learned? More than anything, I found out the hard way that it was practically impossible to eat full MEALS and stay under budget. I really had to stick to small plates, sandwiches, and snacks in order to pull it off. It was especially hard to incorporate filling proteins like chicken breast and I didn't even attempt to use fish - way too expensive!

I can't even imagine how tough it would have been to try to do this for my entire family.

Big thank you to Abby for encouraging me to give this a try and to blog about the process. It was definitely eye-opening and even a little bit of fun. Not gonna lie though, I was really excited to splurge on coffee and ice cream the following day!

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