THE COSTCO DIET
There's little doubt that food shopping at Costco saves money, and it's convenient for stocking up in a single trip. But can a budget-conscious family eat for an entire month without shopping anywhere else? We drew up a Costco meal plan with four weeks' worth of breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks for a family of four, including two young children. The total cost came to about $508 (prices may vary by store). That's about 10 percent less than the "thrifty" grocery budget of $563.40 prescribed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (for a two-parent household with two preschool-age children, based on food costs in August 2018). Because ingredients are sold in bulk, the total was calculated based on unit prices for the food used during the month. Many items are frozen or non-perishable, so any excess provides a foundation for next month.
Saundra Latham contributed to this report.