How do you save money eating out...or staying home and cooking?


Good thread cath!

We went out with friends tonight and excersized restraint by sharing an app, a salad and an entree.

We do need to start implementing the cocktails at home thing. But part of the fun of dining out is the cocktails.

:cocktail: :wine_glass: :sake:


Ahhh @Chowseeker1999 -

Thanks for sharing. I’ve been curious about the money saving habits that enable you to seek, find and share those wonderful meals - as well as the sakes you’ve been getting into.

I also notice (correct me if I’m wrong) you tend to stay away from mid-level (mediocre?) restaurants to save for the big splurge.

But who knew, you cook too.



I would pay $2.5 for an avocado. That, a hunk of baguette, and a lime for 50 cents, is a worthy lunch, worth every penny.


I do like when they have those big grills by the pool and we always get some Ahi grilled rare and marinate some chicken breast and get the big ol’ container of Hawaiian Macaroni salad that has so much Best Foods Mayo that I never have to add any…

We mostly vacation in islands, so all day, we are either in the pool, ocean, golf, hiking, more pool and :tropical_drink:
After all that action with sun, fun, I don’t want to cook too much in the kitchen.
We seem to always get those resort room villas with a full kitchen and it is nice to have, if the moment strikes!

I bet you’re a ‘Great’ cook Cath!


I just paid $2.50 for avocados that are so big and fantastic that my market that I get them at are known for having the best avocado’s and never a bum one in the group…evah!


The avocados I buy at the farmers’ market are worth the extra cost and they’re consistent.


$2.50 for a bag? Do tell where?


Hi @Plumeria -

When are we leaving? :blush:

But seriously, your post reminded me of another money saver travel tip. If we’re going someplace where we’ll be spending more time out doing activities, sightseeing, etc. we usually get a basic room with no bells and whistles (used for sleep and for hubby to get highlights of whatever games played that day :wink:). But if we spend most of our time at the hotel by the pool (like in P.S. or here in L.A.) we like more luxuries.

Now I wanna’ go someplace!


Hi @TheCookie,

I love cooking. :blush: And yes, I’d rather save up and go eat, e.g., great Sushi once in a while (say, $150 - $200), than go to a so-so / OK Sushi spot multiple times (~$40 - $75). :slight_smile:


I hear that!


Love buying avocados at the Farmers Market. It’s where I discovered varieties, tastes and textures. Before that it was just Haas or what I called “The ones with the thin skins”.


Avocados from Mexico. .:notes::musical_note:


Mexico has some damn good avocados, in season. I’m happy our southern neighbors share their avocados with us.


I know. They’re so friggin’ good in Mexico. I eat them with every meal when we’re there.


costco usually has good avocado’s but you sure are right avo’s from a good farm are a cut above. I had a farmstand tell me they let the avo’s hang for a several months before picking to develop the flavor. Have no idea if this is true but the avo’s were darn good


6 Grocery Stores that Beat Target & Walmart

I found this slideshow on MSN. I don’t know where ALDI is, but Kroger is also Ralphs.


Hi @catholiver

[quote=“catholiver, post:54, topic:5453”]
La Boqueria just made me wild
[/quote]Nice pics on CH.


We were in an apartment so it was terrific to be able to buy from there.


Timely topic to run across. I would have saved money by eating out today. (Well, not what we ate, but still…) I stopped by Berkeley Bowl and got a couple of decent size (but not huge) grass fed ribeyes and grilled them quickly over coals, and we also had a couple of small artichokes and other grilled vegetables and tortillas. And it had been a while since I had a good piece of steak. So, while the meat was about $32, it would have been that much + each at a restaurant, and wouldn’t have tasted any better.

When we eat out, we usually share a starter, each get a main course, and then sometimes share a dessert - usually plenty of food for 2.

When we cook dinner at home, we’ll often make enough for me to have a lunch or two during the week.

When we have leftovers, I can usually repurpose them into something good.

Our simple fact, which isn’t particularly money-saving, is that we rarely have extra “fresh food” in the house. There’s very little in the freezer, the places we often shop don’t have regular ads, and we have a cornucopia of fresh everything always available. On the other hand, there’s little waste because we don’t stock up on things that are a good price and will rot before they’re used.


Along those lines, those of you from the Bay Area may be aware of Duarte’s, the old roadhouse in Pescadero that serves a nice cream of green chile soup. I asked for a recipe, and they told me it was Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom and Cream of Chicken, with actual cream and canned green chiles added, plus some simple spices, then all blended. I tried making it and it wasn’t exactly the same, but pretty close. Worked better with 1/3 C of M, 1/3 C of C, and 1/3 Cream of Celery. Subbing fresh Hatch chiles made it great.