Eating Out in September

photo 1 September was an experiment in eating out a little less than we did in August. This doesn’t include our trip to Minneapolis or meals out when someone else paid. Let's see how we did!

  • Sept. 2: Hy-Vee Chinese Express - $14.00 (had a coupon; lots of leftovers)
  • Sept. 7: Panera - $28.35
  • Sept. 8: Buffalo Wild Wings - $36.00
  • Sept. 9: Chipotle - $18.07 (wasn't planned but we both had a stressful day)
  • Sept. 11: Dominos - $11.64
  • Sept. 12: Los Tres Amigos - $22.00
  • Sept. 14: Sam & Louie's Pizza - $11.00 (had a coupon)
  • Sept. 15: Smashburger - $23.90
  • Sept. 17: Panera - $10.51 (had a gift card + MyPanera rewards)
  • Sept. 18: Godfather's Pizza - $14.29 (had a coupon)
  • Sept. 19: Monterrey - $8.97 (my Lunch Bunch at work)
  • Sept. 22: Hy-Vee - $9.89
  • Sept. 23: Jimmy John's - $10.00 (Eric lunch)
  • Sept. 23: Chipotle - $18.07
  • Sept. 24: Applebee's - $40.00 (we got dessert)
  • Sept. 25: Gusto Pizza - $22.79 (new place by our house; we rode bikes)
  • Sept. 26: Noodles & Co. - $19.30
  • Sept. 27: Applebee's - $20.00 (celebrating my birthday with my coworkers)
  • Sept. 27: Wendy's - $6.?? (quick meal on our way to family photos)
  • Sept. 28: Des Moines Farmers' Market - $7.00
  • Sept. 30: The Cheesecake Factory - $4.00

Total: $355.78 (Last month's total: $363.82)

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  • We still ate out a lot (21 times, versus 24 times the month before), and we spent nearly the same amount. We started out great (only two meals out in the first week!), but we didn't have recipes or meals planned, so it wasn't sustainable. We also kind of decided we were challenging ourselves to change something that we don't really want to change. Plus it was my BIRTHMONTH so I wanted to celebrate. :) (Which if you remember has gotten us into trouble before...)
  • The least expensive meal without a gift card was $9.89 at Hy-Vee and the most expensive meal was $40.00 at Applebee's. The average price was $16.94.
  • On Sept. 4 Eric came home from work and wanted to go out to eat. We had previously decided we would eat at home that night. After a half hour discussion we decided we would eat out because it was Wednesday and Wednesday is pizza night (we had leftover pizza in our fridge though). I had a coupon for a free pizza for my birthday, but our printer was out of ink! We took it as a sign that we should eat at home, so we did. Our willpower didn't last through the rest of the month, though.
  • We cut out all trips to Dairy Queen and fro yo :)
  • As of now, I do not plan to keep track of October's meals, but we are going to cut down our Food money from $600 to $500. This is mostly because we need to save up for Rooney's 2nd birthday party and Eric's 30th birthday celebration, and the money needed to come from somewhere!

Did anyone else keep track of their meals out in September?