grocery game monthly challenge

30 Keto Diet Staples You Will Find In Our Kitchen : The Grocery Game Challenge #5 Aug 28-Sept 3



You may have noticed over the past 2 years that our grocery shopping list has changed quite a bit since we’ve moved over to a keto diet.

You might also have taken note that our many of our Sunday frugal recipes are low carb as well and this is because we no longer just eat what we want or classify as “healthy“.

We have taken control of our eating habits and put more effort into what fuels our bodies and how we energize it each day.

Related: Are you eating too much food?

I’m not exclusively on a keto diet however I do follow it as much as possible as my dietary needs are different from Mrs. CBB.

Coffee is a great start to the day for keto diet lovers. Many of you might be familiar with Bullet Proof Coffee and for those of you who aren’t let me tell you it’s packed full of fat!

Some people have asked if the keto diet has interrupted our lean grocery budget of $265 a month for 2 adults and a toddler and it depends. Some months might be great and other month like August we went over by $18 although having the $25 stockpile comes in handy from time to time.

Another factor to consider is price and sales. You may run out of almond flour and it just so happens to be on sale, you’re in luck.

Cutting back on non-essentials really has helped our grocery budget forcing us to cook more, meal prep like pros (even though they don’t always work perfectly) and shop with a super-charged frugal mindset.


Bullet Proof Coffee Recipe:


pumpkin spice bullet proof coffeeWe make our perfect cup of morning java the keto way but for many of you this coffee might seem overwhelming but trust me it is delicious and not in any funky, weird, kind or way.

Bullet proof coffee is frothy and creamy comparable to a Tim Hortons hot English toffee or Vanilla Cappuccino.

Just in time for Autumn you can start to enjoy Pumpkin Spiced Bullet Proof Coffee which I’m sharing from The Banting Blondes.

  • 2 cups of black coffee *instant or brewed
  • 1 tablespoon Butter grass-fed is best but can be costly Kerrigold is popular and a Natural Irish Butter.

1 tablespoon Nutiva Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, 444 ml or Premium MCT Oil derived only from Organic Coconuts - 32oz BPA free bottle | The only MCT oil certified Paleo Safe and registered by the Vegan Society. Non-GMO and Gluten Free. (Affiliate)

Instructions how to make Bullet Proof Coffee

Make your 2 cups of black coffee then put all the ingredients into a blender or use a hand frother and blend it up until creamy and frothy. We like the blender better as it really does a good job with frothing. The electric milk or coffee frother is great if you’re in a rush for work or having to get out the door quick.


What is the Keto Diet?


The Ketogenic diet also known as Keto or a low-carb, high-fat diet following suit with Atkins and other low carb diets and meal plans. What we love about low carb eating or the keto diet is the amount of experimenting we do with the products we purchase.

The hardest part for newbies into the keto diet way of eating is having to eat high amounts of fat. To some it may be shocking that Mrs. CBB eats bacon more than the average person BUT it’s the fat content she needs. Reducing your carb intake and increasing fat puts your body into a state called, “ketosis” or that happy place for many low carb lovers.

When we think of the Keto Diet we consider it a way of life not a diet to lose weight although that was what it started out as for Mrs. CBB. After having our first child and gaining 50lbs or so she knew she had to get back on track to where she was pre-pregnancy.  Although running 5k every day hasn’t become part of her daily routine what she has incorporated is a new way of eating.


Keto Diet Plan


The Keto diet plan needs to send your body into a state of ketosis where you are using the fat you have stored for energy as opposed to carbohydrates. If you fail to do this you won’t lose the weight and could gain so cheating on the keto diet is a BIG NO. If you do cheat start over the next day with even more motivation. You will get away with eating zero carb only if you stick to the same meals every day which would be limited but not impossible.

Last year Mrs. CBB bought keto sticks from the pharmacy that test the amount of ketones in your urine. You may be familiar with these if you’ve been pregnant as most doctors ask pregnant women to check their ketone levels during doctor’s visits. You can buy a bottle of 200 strips for under $10 at Shoppers Drug Mart behind the counter.

It’s not 100% accurate but it will give you a damn good estimate whether you have reached ketosis or not. All you need is a bit of colour change in the stick to be in ketosis. Sometimes people think the darker the urine stick colour the further into ketosis you may be.

Unfortunately it could be the other way around and you are dehydrated. It’s very important to keep hydrated on a low carb keto diet because of all the fiber you eat. The last thing you want happening is getting constipated which is another issue that is hard to deal with (no pun intended).


Our Keto Diet Meal Plan


Mrs. CBB didn’t start with much of a meal plan for the keto diet however we did experiment with different recipes and then added our own touch.  What we’ve learned is that if you stock all the main staples of a keto diet in your pantry and refrigerator you need it.

What we do is then purchase produce, meats and dairy and we’re all set.

Some of our more popular low carb keto diet recipes on the blog have been favourites we’ve been enjoying.

All of these recipes are gluten-free, sugar-free and  low carb perfect for keto diet maintenance.

Lots more Low Carb Keto Diet Recipes available…. just read our Free Recipe Index.


Keto Diet Food List


30 KETO DIET STAPLES YOU WILL FIND IN OUR KITCHEN INFOGRAPHICYour keto grocery list may differ from someone else depending on food allergies, grocery budget and availability.

What I find interesting about the Low Carb Keto Diet is that it encourages people to cook otherwise you will fail. The Keto Diet is a masterpiece of dishes that will satisfy your tummy for hours.

The idea is to keep full so you’re not snacking in between unless necessary or over-eating which most people do. When we eat the wrong foods that spike our insulin levels, look out. It can be hard to beat the carbohydrate giant.

Most often we find that not all stores care keto diet foods so opting to purchase online is the next best option for keto foodies.

Not all keto diet foods and supplements are purchased at the grocery store unless they have an Organic/Health section where they may be available.

Most times we end up at the Bulk Barn, Costco and Popeye’s supplements for the little extras.

You can also order tonnes of stuff from Amazon Canada with free 2 day shipping if you’re a PRIME Member on Prime products.

Almost everything that is Keto or low carb is gluten-free so talk to your doctor if you think you’d like to try this way of eating healthy.

I plan to do a master keto grocery shopping list to share prices and tell you why we buy what we do, where we do in an upcoming blog post.

Keep an eye on the blog or better yet, subscribe so you get an email when I publish a new post.

You can also download our 30 keto staples list printable and put it on your refrigerator for reference and motivation.

Keep in mind that our Keto Diet/Low Carb pantry staples list is not inclusive as we have many other items that add to our meal plan.

These are the essentials that are great to start out with when you are new to the Keto Diet lifestyle.

Eat Eggs, Eat Bacon and Eat your Fat!!! Eat Fat Get Thin!!

Discussion Question: What are some of your favourite low-carb keto diet staples that I haven’t listed and the best place to buy or order in Canada?


August Grocery Game Challenge


Join in the 2017 Grocery Game Challenge (GGC) fun and post your grocery shop in the comment section of each GGC blog post. Here are The Grocery Game Challenge rules to get you started and where you’ll also find a link for the 2017 GGC schedule. Please feel free to download, save and even print the schedule.

Post your shop and you can be next.

New monthly prize: See the Grocery Game Rules


Free Money Saving Tools 2017


Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

This is the budget that brought us to debt freedom back in 2013 and now I’m offering to all of you for FREE. We still use this budget every month as it helps us to see our overall financial picture.

2014 Free Money Saving ToolsDon’t pay someone for these services, I’ve done the work for you along with some help from other amazing bloggers.

You can download the FREE Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel It’s FREE! We use it to budget and in large part a reason we could pay our mortgage off in 5 years, check it out!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE.

CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet. So many free resources at your fingertips.


Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide 2017


the ultimate grocery shopping guide cbbEverything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is packed into this amazing FREE grocery shopping guide that has taken 5 years to create.

The Ultimate Grocery Shopping guide is ongoing with new informative money-saving posts added every month.

Even if you don’t live in Canada there are some amazing budget saving tips that will help put you on the path to more savings at the supermarket.

Share this guide with your friends and tell them about Canadian Budget Binder especially if they are struggling with their grocery budget.

The time is NOW to get started saving money on groceries so please enjoy the  many money-saving posts in the The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.


2017 Grocery Shop Results


Yearly grocery budget for two + 1 Toddler 2017: $3180 or $265/month (The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $300/year or $25/month.Points Overview (add any other sections you need to show us your savings)

  • Total Grocery Budget for this Month: $265
  • Total Grocery Budget with any carry-overs $265
  • Total Gift Cards used to date: $0
  • Total Rewards Points redeemed this week: $0
  • Total Rewards Points used to date: $0
  • PC Points Plus Earned to date: 632,000
  • Scanning Code of Practice (SCOP) to date $0
  • Shoppers Optimum: 983,000 O.M.G

Coupon Apps (add any other apps you use to save money)

  • Zweet to cash out : $18.25… no idea where the money went but it seems we have $0.
  • Checkout51 to cash out : $24.50 we cashed out so we’re back at O.


Our Grocery Shop This Week



  • 3 x 10% Cream $2.09 each
  • 2 dozen extra large eggs $5.09
  • 1 4l Sealtest Milk $4.25
  • Whipping Cream $4.39
  • Almond Flour $19.99
  • 2lbs strawberries $5.99

Total Out-of-pocket $45.98

All totals below already have tax factored into them.

  • Total to spend this month : $265
  • Stockpile budget 2016 : $25.00/month
  • Stockpile budget used this month: $25
  • Total coupons used this week: $0
  • Total coupons used to date: $1
  • Total in-store discounts this week: $0
  • Total in-store discounts to date: $652.80
  • Total spent this week: $45.98
  • Total spent so far this month: $283.51
  • Total over/Under spend this shop: over $18.51
  • Total over/Under spend for the month: $18.51 to carry to September
  • Total left to spend for the month: -$18.5
  • Total Spent To Date 2017: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $231.06+Feb $255.16+March ($5 budget increase) $263.60 + April $273.83+ May $257.15 + June $65.43+July $226.84+August $283.51

Weekly Overview (your final thoughts)

We didn’t need too much since we had a load of vegetables and fruits dumped on us from the in-laws the past few days. We’ll be eating very good this next week or two. Looks like we went over in August but still great considering it was a 5 week grocery shopping month. Free produce did help though I have to admit.


Coupons and Coupon Apps


Here are some great places you can find Canadian Coupons! These are your latest Checkout 51 offers which you can use to help save money. We’re finding less and less coupons in the stores these days. What are your thoughts? Are coupon apps taking over the paper coupons?

If you notice I’m missing a valuable link please message me and I’ll get it added to the savings list below.

Sign up for the Nielsen Canada Home Scan Program and you can earn rewards points fast to redeem for awesome products or gift cards. I did this in the UK and loved it!!

Where can I find Canadian Coupons 2017?

Plus check out these other hidden areas online to get more coupons!!

If any of the links below don’t open properly please report them to my email address or use comment form.

  • Healthy Essentials Printable Coupons (Johnson and Johnson)
  • Danone Coupons Get up to $25 in coupons
  • Clorox Coupons Sign up to print coupons in the Clorox family which include Greenworks, Glad etc.
  • Kraft Canada Sign up and receive recipes and coupons by email
  • Printable Smart Source Coupons
  • Walmart Canada Printable Coupons
  • Proctor and Gamble PandG Sign up for printable coupons
  • Hidden Coupon Portals You Should know about – I found this over at Save a Loonie and you’ll want to sign up for notifications and check out the site so you get notified every time a hidden coupon is available from, Brandsaver, Smart Source etc.


Grocery Game Challenge 2017 FAQ’s


  • Grocery Game Challenge RULES: Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible. The rules have been updated to reflect changes for the 2017 challenge year.
  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?: No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.
  • What is the monthly prize and who can claim it?- The monthly prize is a $10-$20-$50 PC Loblaws Gift Card and for our out of country friends it’s $CDN via PayPal.  Please see GGC rules.
  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?: The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month but you will still get a ballot when you post your shops even if they are late but I encourage you to stay on schedule. If you choose to post monthly or bi-weekly you will only get 1 ballot for that shop. It’s a proven fact the minute we stop doing something scheduled that we end up forgetting to do it altogether. Don’t let that be you! You can post your shops all month-long.
  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?: No, our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. As of 2014-2015 we no longer include such items in our grocery budget so we can see actual food numbers at the end of the year in order to plan accordingly our budget.
  • Do you stockpile food? We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any longer as we found we weren’t eating it fast enough. Stockpiling is still great and just one way to help cut your budget to save money if you do find items that you can buy in bulk at a sale price.
  • Canadian Coupons:Where can I find Canadian Coupons?: Here are your latest  Checkout 51 offers that you can use to help you save money in the Grocery Game Challenge. There are many great Canadian Couponing websites online that share weekly coupon match-ups so you can plan your grocery list.
  • Best Coupon Apps: Coupons are slowly fading with mobile coupon apps being the big rave these days. Just recently the popular coupon site that mailed coupons to households has gotten involved with the addition of a new mobile app joining forces with the many other coupon apps available. If you find an app that I don’t talk about please let me know as they are always being added and I’d like to review them.
  • What is the Best Flyer App- We use Flipp on our Iphone so if you wan to have all your flyers in one spot download Flipp from the Apple Store or get it on Google Play.
  • What is an FPC?: An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.
  • What is GGC?– The Grocery Game Challenge of course!
  • How Do I Know what stores accept coupons?:  If you are not sure it’s always best to call the store and ask.
  • How Do I Grocery Shop?: I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do. This is why The Grocery Game Challenge is one of the most popular hang out spots for people who want to save money on groceries.

If you’ve just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2017 get ready to look at your grocery budget by learning;

  • Where you are spending money
  • How much money you are spending
  • How much money you are saving every month

If you want to learn everything I know about grocery shopping in Canada check out my Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide! It’s FREE!

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email. If I use your topic I will put your name in a draw for a prize at the end of the year.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge 2017!


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  1. I’ve heard of Keto Diet before. Thanks to your post I’ve finally learned more about it, as well as how to be healthy without going out of budget.

  2. Week 33 – Sept 1 – 7, 2017
    Name Your Store: No Frills
    Total Coupons Used: $
    Total Points =
    Total Out Of Pocket: $0.00

    4 L 2% Milk = $4.27
    2 – 750 g Frozen Carrots & Peas = $3.94

    No Shop

    Grocery Game Challenge Results
    Total Grocery Budget for the 2 Adults ($1820.00, for the pay period – $70.00)
    Total Human (Adults) this Week Period: $0.00
    Left for the Month: $0
    Total Human (Adults) to Date: $1,041.81 (minus Debt pymt & Gift Cards) = $907.15

    Total Grocery Budget for the 3 Cats ($364, for the pay period – $14.00)
    Total Cats this Week Period: $
    Total Cats to Date: $227.25

    Total Grocery Budget for Stockpile ($507.69)
    Total Stockpile this Week Period: $
    Total Stockpile to Date: $163.05

    Total Grocery Budget for the Personal Hygiene ($182)
    Total Personal Hygiene this Week Period: $
    Total Personal Hygiene to Date: $180.13

    Total Grocery Budget for Meat ($499.98)
    Total Meat this Week Period: $
    Total Meat to Date: $315.53

    Total Coupons Used this Week Period: $
    Total Coupons Used To Date: $17.99

    Total Grocery Savings for this Week Period: $
    Total Grocery Savings to Date: $69.15

    Total Price Match for this Week Period: $
    Total Price Match to Date: $48.67

    Total PC Points Received this Week Period:
    Total PC Rewards Points Used this Week Period:
    Total PC Rewards To Date: 2,174

    Overview: Needed very little this week.

  3. The GGC Savings will be for “splurge” items when we re-stock. For example fresh lobsters for us or possibly a prime rib for my hubby. There are a lot of things that add up quickly in the condiments, spices, pickles that we could afford with the extra funds. The re-stocking reserve will handle the rest. 🙂

    No the Ramen Soup is made with Rice Vermicelli noodles instead of wheat so I can have the soup too. We use No Salt Chicken Stock and hit it with some spices or tobasco or whatever we are in the mood for in terms of heat, a handful of sliced green onions & finish it with a poached egg.

    What I like about the Olive Garden salads is the dressing, the fact that they are all-you-can-eat plus they will give me my own bowl that I customize to suit my health issues…extra tomatoes & black olives, no pickled peppers, no croutons & definitely no fresh grated parmesan cheese. 🙂 It’s a twice a year get-together with our girlfriend that we do. The bridge tolls to get there add up to $7.50 so we only do it a couple times a year. Olive Garden also makes an awesome virgin Caesar drink so we sit, chat & catch up on the last 6 months over lunch.

    Mr CBB, my chili has 2 different types of ground chili pepper (regular & hot), onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, black pepper, worscestershire, Splenda brown sugar and beef boullion powder. The best part, other than browning my ground beef in a pan…the whole thing cooks in my crockpot. 🙂

  4. AUGUST – Week #4 of 4- Aug 28-Sept 3, 2017


    •Total Grocery Budgeted For Year: $190.00 x 12 = $2,280.00 for 2 adults



    Hubby and I were talking the other day about our grocery shopping habits… you know the drill. We’re all trying to buy less, shop less, spend less, waste less & sometimes what we are doing just isn’t working the way we hoped it would.

    The new rule at our house is…there will be NO SHOPPING until we have used up EVERYTHING we have on hand with a few notable exceptions – milk, bread, eggs, onions, carrots & celery will be re-stocked as needed! I still need to make soups!

    I’m sure this method will save us boatloads of money PLUS I won’t have to penny pinch every week pouring over the flyers and devoting my energy to pounding the pavement in a ton of different stores.

    So, with the start of this new system…I will create a new reserve that is called the GGC Savings Reserve. It’s where I will stash the money that we don’t spend…and we can easily see how much we have saved as a result of this clean-out! I also plan to make large monthly transfer to the re-stocking reserve so that when the stock is depleted…we have lots of cash on hand to re-stock as sales become available. This month we kick off the GGC Savings Reserve with $34.47!


    I expect our meals will get really interesting with this new approach, the longer we are at it. It’s going to be all about shopping our pantry and the freezer until they are completely empty.

    What I will do is report what I managed to make with what I had on hand in the house. How much food do you have on hand…want to join me in what I am affectionately calling, “the great grocery clean-out”? (Did you notice that’s also GGC?) LOL

    So, the GGC at our house has begun!

    I will show you the meal plan for the week using the groceries on hand. This week is:

    Monday – Lunch – Ham Sandwiches & an apple

    Monday – Dinner – Chicken & fries


    Tuesday – Lunch – Egg Salad Sandwich & potato salad

    Tuesday – Dinner – use dining card for $20 at Milestones


    Wednesday – Lunch – Tuna Sandwiches, bread & butter pickles & iced tea

    Wednesday – Dinner – Triple Bean Bake with Bacon


    Thursday – Lunch – Leftover fried chicken, Onion Bagels with cheese & tomato

    Thursday – Dinner – Slow Roasted Onion Blade Roast with roasted nugget potatoes, celery & carrots


    Friday – Lunch – Chili with buttered Onion Buns & Blueberries

    Friday – Dinner – Cashew Rice Bowl with mushrooms, roasted red peppers & snap peas


    Saturday – Lunch – Vegetable Soup, Cheese & Crackers

    Saturday – Dinner – Leftover Triple Bean Bake with Bacon and Garlic Toast


    Sunday – Lunch – Birthday lunch with a friend at Olive Garden << mmm green salad!

    Sunday – Dinner – Chicken Ramen Soup



    RCSS – Pitt Meadows –

    2 x 3lb bag Yellow Onions @ $1.77 ea = $3.54

    Total Regular Grocery OOP: $3.54
    Total Stocking Up Budget OOP: $0.00
    Total Summer Reserve OOP:

    ** Earned 0 PC.Plus Points on this shop **
    ** SAVED $0.00 in Rain Check/ Coupons **
    ** SAVED $0.00 Loyalty Savings on this shop **






    •Total Loyalty Card Price Reductions This Year: $141.70

    •Total Coupons/Rain Checks Used This Year: $0.00

    •Total Price Match Savings Used This Year: $0.00

    •Total More Points Earned This Year: 308 Points

    •Total Air Miles Earned This Year: 22 Air Miles

    •Total PC PLUS Points Earned This Year: 20,000 Points

    •Total Optimum Points Earned This Year: 4,100 Points



    $ 1,520.00 Grocery Budget JAN-AUG

    ($ 208.13) NET RESERVE SAVINGS

    ($1,311.87) Actual CASH SPENT



    $ 234.84 Re-Stocking Fund
    $ 140.70 Holiday Season Fund + $200 RCSS POINTS + $10 Dream Air Miles.
    $ 619.59 Summer Season Fund
    $ 453.37 US Shopping Reserve
    $ 34.47 GGC Savings Reserve
    $ 0.00 Points Redeemed Reserve

    OUR CURRENT TOTAL UNUSED RESERVES ARE $1,482.97. This means the $1,274.44 that we carried forward from 2016 PLUS AN ADDITIONAL $958.85 that we have added in 2017, LESS $750.32 that we have drawn out for use in 2017.


    • Hi Mary,
      Funny you both should mention this because Mrs. CBB and I have talked about this way of grocery shopping before but it is tough. I am thrilled to hear both Larry and yourself are committed to this and can’t wait to see the results every week. I love how you are so diligent with tracking numbers and finding the best savings for your family. It’s interesting to see the numbers and I often wonder why so many other people don’t take the time to do the same.
      What will you do with your GGC reserve?
      Chili and buttered onion buns… YUM!! When you make your chili what spices do you put in? I’m not a fan of heat BUT I don’t want chili to taste like pasta sauce, if you know what I mean.
      How do you make the Ramen soup or is that those packets? I have never been to the Olive garden before. What do you love about their salads?
      Looking forward to this twist in the road for your GGC journey!! Smart going! You get ballot #11. MR.CBB

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