My SNAP Challenge

After Gwyneth Paltrow’s spectacular fail last week, I decided to try a virtual SNAP challenge of my own. Could I buy enough groceries to eat nutritiously for a week on $29?

Paltrow’s grocery haul was perfectly respectable in terms of nutrition. The problem was that it didn’t contain nearly enough calories to sustain an adult for a week.

I’m not saying that the following rations would win any gourmet awards. But it would supply 2,000 calories per day and meet 100% of almost all of your dietary requirements…for just over $4/day.  (Prices were sourced from my local grocery store, using their online shopping tool.)

  • 1SNAP Challenge loaf  whole wheat bread:  $1.99
  • 8 eggs: $1.50
  • 12 ounces peanut butter: $1.44
  • 1 5-ounce can tuna: $0.90
  • 14 ounces dry pasta: $0.84
  • 1 quart spaghetti sauce: $1.62
  • 12 ounces  rice: $ .92
  • 1 pound dried beans:  $1.25
  • 3/4 cup olive oil: $0.90
  • 2 quarts whole milk: $2.39
  • 1 quart whole yogurt: $2.19
  • 2 pounds frozen vegetables: $1.98
  • 2 heads lettuce: $3.60
  • 1 pound carrots $1.99
  • 7 apples: $3.50
  • 7 bananas $1.75

Grand Total: $28.76 or $4.11 per day

And here’s how your daily nutrition would average out. (I know a lot of people who spend a whole lot more on food and get a whole lot less nutrition for it.)

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