August was a mixed month. Mostly a quiet time at home, except for most of a week spent in Colorado.
The averages for this month:
- Lunch prepared at home $2.72 ($2.41 in July)
- Lunch eaten or purchased outside the home: $11.80 ($10.29)
- Dinner eaten at home: $4.98 ($5.29)
- Dinner eaten out: $13.28 if averaged with the $5 pizza, otherwise $19.48 ($12.01)
These averages are proving to be fairly consistent month to month. Eating away from home for one week gives a much more accurate average cost of evening meals out.
Our most expensive meals were some lunches in Colorado: a steak lunch and elk on the way back
Lunches out tend to be 4-5 times more expensive than those prepared at home, while evening meals run about 3x meals at home.
Had we purchased every lunch and prepared none it would have cost us $365.80 per person in August. We actually spent $43.52 for lunches at home plus $165.15 for lunches purchased or eaten out: $208.67.
Had we purchased every evening meal out and prepared none at home, it would have cost us $411.68. We actually spent $124.49 for dinners at home and $66.40 for dinners out: $190.89.
We saved $377.92 by preparing and eating most meals at home, plus we have better control over what we eat. That’s more than our mortgage insurance!
Over the month we prepared 19 different recipes for evening meals, because we ate out more in Colorado.