Friday, October 7, 2016

Our Eating Out and Take Out Review

I track my grocery spending in a notebook and I have never tracked my take out and eating out budget!!!  LIKE EVER!!!  I decided to go back and figure out how the numbers looked for eating out this year after realizing that we went a little overboard in August!  I was worried that it was going to upset me but I was looking to find out anyway...better to know and get a handle on it.

I had some gift cards from my students and my husband had a few from his so we did enjoy some that cost us nothing out of pocket but that still doesn't mean that money wasn't spent.  I try to keep our eating out spending under $40 per month.  The take out budget I thought it was going well but check out my review below:


$5.30 Little Caesars 
$9.54 Little Caesars
$4.23 Dominos Pizza
$5.30 Little Caesars
$9.53 Paisanos Steak and Cheese

Total $33.90


$2.00 Red Robin (above gift card)
$3.58 Wendy's 
$10.59 Little Caesars
$14.85 Tony's Pizza
$13.50 Dairy Barn Ice Cream
$10.98 Chuck E Cheese
$12.16 Cheesecake Factory (above gift card)
$46.48 Chinese food
$15.68 Wendy's

Total $129.82


$19.78 Grottos
$7.50 Thrashers fries
$5.00 Kohr's Ice Cream 
$6.91 Wendy's
Total $38.94


$5.30 Little Caesars
$9.53 Paisano's Steak and Cheese
$5.30 Little Caesars
$8.54 Wendy's
$9.00 Little Caesars
$23.97 Green Turtle

Total $61.64


$9.53 Paisanos Steak and Cheese
$5.30 Little Caesars
$2.00 Delia's tip (my mom paid rest)
$9.35 Wendy's
$5.30 Little Caesars

Total $31.48


$42.55 Chinese
$5.30 Little Caesars
Total $47.85


 $5.30 Little Caesars
$2.11 Wendy's

Total $7.41


$5.30 Little Caesars
$5.30 Little Caesars
Total $10.60


$4.01 Wendy's
$24.37 Little Caesars
$4.00 Mike's (above gift card)
Total $ 32.38

Total Take Out for the Year $394.02

Monthly Average $43.78

Only a little over in April with Chinese food for the family but either my mother or mother in law was visiting so we were hosting a special meal.  June and July included our vacation so I think that I did really well with eating out only being $22 over budget  in June because it was just one meal that we had on the beach.  We were also crossing over into July so it was nice to have it spread over two months and make so many great memories even though not the greatest sand castle because they spent so much time in the water instead.

August was a mess and I don't have any reason except we were trying to fit in everything at the end of summer.  We promised my son a trip to Chuck E. Cheese buffet which didn't happen until August. We had fun and he used tokens that we already have to play all summer and this was the only expense for that enjoyment.

We ended up picking up the tab for everyone to get ice cream since they picked us up before.  We love this place and got to enjoy it and make lots of memories this summer.

We went a little crazy at Cheesecake Factory after using the gift card because we eat a great meal and then got cheese cake!!!  Umm, it was great and my son's first cheese cake which he shared with us....lots of chocolate.  Another great memory!!

Then we bought Chinese food again when my mom was visiting and picked up the tab which is one of her favorites.  I know that we went a little crazy in August but we had a great end to the summer.  

After going over everything, I was so excited that the monthly total was only a few dollars over what I wanted to spend.  I am sure that we can figure out a way to even it over for the year!!  The best part is that I am sure that I am under on my grocery budget normally in a year about that much so it might even itself out to a total food budget being good.  The worst part is when the money is going out and you don't know where it is going so I am happy that I got this all tracked and I am going to continue for the year.

Do you tracking your take out and eating out spending??


  1. I love the look on your son's face as he eats the cheesecake, lol!

    You're right, keeping track of all your expenses and then totally them up is a wake-up call, but you did great overall. $5 at Little Caesar's... I wish! You obviously aren't feeding any teenagers, LOL.

    Great job, Alison, as usual :)

    1. He wasn't posing for the picture but just waiting for the bite. Love the look and he enjoyed the very chocolate dessert which would not have been our choice of cheesecake but it was good.

      We try to stick to one pizza and then add anything else at home to make it a meal if we can. $5 is a great deal for a pizza and we can totally eat lunch on it easily without much effort so it often a go to because it is cheaper then frozen or other take out. Sadly, super sick of pizza but we get it over and over because it is my son's favorite and when I don't feel like cooking, it is easy to bend when it is only $5 :) I am surprised how good the numbers are when I wasn't really tracking them including our beach vacation and one or two trips to family so eating out on the drive. It is good that there is a Little Caesars in the middle of PA that we can drive right up to and get a pizza so we don't have a huge eating out expense when stopping there and feeding all three of us :)

  2. Like your grocery budget, I am amazed at how little you pay for take-out meals. We do not have an eating out budget because we so rarely do that, except when vacationing. Then the money for restaurant meals is part of our holiday budget. Socially, I will go for a cup of tea somewhere or a light lunch to keep the costs down, but that money comes from my household budget usually.

    1. We didn't used to have a budget for take out which is why I didn't really track it but I did try to limit it...especially when we spent a lot of money on other things like vacation, holidays and groceries but going to try to track going forward. We needed to make sure that going out or getting take out was treated like a treat and not like something that is a given. It is partially successful but I don't frequently get to pick what we get :)

  3. That is great that you stayed close to what you wanted to spend per month, even without keeping track! I budget $25 per month for eating out/take out; I usually spend all of it when my daughter comes down to visit; when it is just myself, I spend maybe $10 to $15.

    1. I think that it worked out okay!! I wanted to budget $25 but my husband told me that was unrealistic and I need to calm down. I am happy that only August went crazy but having visitors does make the budget go crazy!!


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