Yo! How much are ya'll spending a month on average when you eat out?

So, I know for many folks including myself. During the pandemic we ate out more than usual to support small businesses in our city and considered it “doing our part.” Even before the ugliness of 2020, my wife and I ate out quite a bit! This month alone we’ve probably spent right at 300 bucks on eating out! Don’t judge me. We had a discussion about it last week and have decided to cut it back drastically and put more in our savings. We’ll be preparing more meals at home, experimenting with recipes and so forth. I’m actually looking forward to it and it’s long overdue!! Our kids are grown and gone and it just leaves the 2 of us. Good excuse right?? lol! Whatever…But we really have retirement, a new car and home improvements on our list. This will help us achieve all of this quickly. What say you, Penny Hoarders??


i only spend 30 dollars because i only eat out once a month.have to save money some where


Have you always tried to spend as little as possible on meals out? What was your pattern before you decided to spend $30 a month on eating out? I’m curious to know how folks got to where they are now and what they’ve learned. Thanks for sharing!

Hi, I just moved to NYC recently (July 1), and so the below is from July 1 to Sept 17 – not counting previous spending because restaurants were a lot more inaccessible where I was before. Across 2.5 months, it’s about $397/mo in eating out for me. This includes treating other people, paying for groups, etc (i.e. money returned to me isn’t counted on the $994, so the number is pessimistic).

When I first started out in my career, I noticed my eating out spending is one of the most. So I had a period where I almost never went out. But then I saved enough over time and after a few raises/promotions, it’s reasonable for me to go out to eat on the weekends and/or on special occasions.

On weekdays, I follow a strict diet for fitness anyway so it’s a requirement to cook at home (hard to do macros when eating out), and eating out is for cheat days.



Wow! Thanks for sharing your spending for eating out. It’s so interesting to see how folks are approaching this. It seems to me that time is the X factor here. What we choose to do with our time for meal prep seems to be a big part in how much we spend on eating out. If we have a hectic schedule, at some point we’ll have to sacrifice some time to prep/organize our meals. For some of us that can be tricky. Especially, if our time is connected to making income. Tight work schedules are challenging.


I budget my coffee money at 10$ week, so lets say that’s 40$ a month, roughly.

I don’t eat out often with my kids- 2 teen boys gets expensive! Hubs and I generally go out when the kids are at their dads, and we do it once a pay period, so twice a month. We spend about 35$ each time- we are creatures of habit, lol. Mexican, and I get just enchilada a la carte and fill on chips and salsa, and he gets fajitas. so the 35 includes a tip. 70$ ish monthly.

I’d eat out every day if I could! So we spend about $125 a month eating out.


I have two kinds of eating now, fast food and sit down restaurant. For two including tip in Portland OR.

Fast food is rarely over $15. Buy, take home, eat. Have drinks at home unless a combo is less expensive.

Restaurant lunch $50 - $100 for two. Dinner is $70 - $120.


Thanks for sharing. What would you say your total is for one month in terms of frequency?

Breakfast once a week with my son that I pay for.

lunch twice a month with my wife, and dinner twice a month with my wife.

Easy $500/month. Worth every penny for the family life I have. I am always told thank you and that I am loved. And I often get a hug and a kiss.


Wow! Thanks for sharing. Is that a budgeted amount for the month, or is that just what you spend on average? I feel like. If I had an amount that was dedicated to just eating out, then I could better stay within the boundries of my budget. Seeing it on paper, I think would help me stay laser focused.

I just don’t want to go there! That’s a source of some distress on my budget.

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Probably about $200, depends whether I am with someone or not, the usual places are fast food, a favorite bagel spot, sometimes with a group of friends we’ll do a eat-in sit-down lunch, no evening meals to speak of.

Lately due to a health issue, my diet has changed to very little meat & seafood, those 2 items were a BIG attraction to eating out, with them comes increased spending. Since this change in perspective, I look at supermarkets and restaurant menus differently with what they offer and what people are filling their carts and bodies with.

Zero (if I can help it). So, I don’t live in a dense urban setting. I have at least 4 grocery stores within 5 miles of my home. I plan all meals based on what I purchase for the week at the store.

I will eat out in rare cases if: 1) I’m traveling/away from home (although, I have been know to pack food for a day trip); 2) It is a special occasion such as meeting with family or friends.


Thanks for sharing! I appreciate the confirmation concerning packing for a day trip. My wife and I have said that we will adopt this idea as much as we possibly can as well.

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@aj.young.jr posted:

Wow! Thanks for sharing. Is that a budgeted amount for the month, or is that just what you spend on average? I feel like. If I had an amount that was dedicated to just eating out, then I could better stay within the boundries of my budget. Seeing it on paper, I think would help me stay laser focused.

My wife and I spent many years scripting and saving, maxing out our 401k, etc. Now retired with mid seven figure net worth (partly inheritance) so we can afford it and more if desired. At the end of the month there is usually $500-$1000 left in the checking account so we don’t worry about it.

We made a plan for retirement without social security because we had no idea if it would be there because I am retired military, some ***-hole in congress would decide we were double-dipping and there would be some offset or reduction. Well we receive full SS and have never had to touch our retirement accounts, so they just grow and grow (63% so far in 2021). Life is good due to what we did for 40 years.

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That is incredible! Sage advice from folks who are actually doing what most imagine. I’m encouraged. Thanks!