Am I Up to the Challenge? 30 Days Without Restaurants

April 11, 2011

Takeout So y’all know I made it 30 days without shopping….I was able to lower my credit card bill and really avoid lots of silly impulse purchases.  It was a truly challenging challenge, but could I do more?

I pondered a new challenge that would really push me- I came up with the idea to go 30 days without restaurants. The idea made me way uncomfortable so I tabled it several times in my mind…like, I seriously couldn’t even get excited about it, it seemed far too arduous to try.

As if someone were on the same wavelength, I stumbled upon this post on Enemy of Debt on the same type of No-Restaurant Challenge.  I am reconsidering doing this challenge, but it will require me to give up fast food, restaurants, going to bars, everything.    I will have to be better at planning my meals and snacks, even on the most hectic of days.

I get super grumpy when I’m hungry, and I love a good beer on happy hour, so can I do it?  I need to tighten my belt, and the prospect of challenging myself in order to be less financially stressed is exciting…but I LOVE FOOD!  When I did my no-shopping challenge, I derived a great joy from my food purchases…it was my splurge.  This will be quite a stretch for me, I’m still too scared to commit!


Should I quit cold turkey for 30 days, or allow myself only 2 meals out for the entire month?

Does anyone have any tried and true quick recipes that will leave me feeling content and not deprived?

Have you done something like this, or could you get excited about doing it?

I’m thinking of starting on the 15th of April…I guess I just need a push!

7 comments so far.

7 responses to “Am I Up to the Challenge? 30 Days Without Restaurants”

  1. Jessica Gilliam says:

    Yes you can! A good way to do it is find really fun and different recipes, and cook more than you would normally eat. I like trying to do Thai and other fun recipes, and then I will put it in the fridge and save it or even freeze it. It does take a lot of planning, which isn’t too bad if you just plan a week at a time.

    • Ruby says:

      Thai is goooooodd. You’re right Jessica, it’s totally easy to do Thai. If I want to cheat a bit, they have the frozen stir fry I can just throw together if I can’t go out and get fresh stuff. I need to break down my meal planning a week at a time and go to the store more regularly! Thanks for the encouragement!

  2. Kelley says:

    I agree! I operate almost exclusively on food from home in Long Beach. I’ve had a lot of fun getting different sauces and ingredients, and putting leftovers into a bunch of little containers as opposed to one big one allows for easy transport. If you think about it, the time you spend traveling to, ordering, eating, and coming home with your restaurant food is equal to if not less than the time you spend cooking and eating things you already have at home. You just have to make a point of always having some basics (chicken breasts, veggies, cheese… cheese) around to work with.

    Bars are a little harder, but you KNOW it’s cheaper to drink at home! Plus, you don’t get hit on by creepers 😉

    • Ruby says:

      Oh totally! I’m going to have to be a big girl and adapt to my new living situation. We have limited kitchen space having three of us in a small apartment and getting groceries requires a bit of travel time to walk over to the store which is about 10-15 min away and a 40 min each way to go to Target. I’ll have to get over it and make cooking a priority and see it as a way to relax, eat healthy and save money and really incorporate it into my life instead of seeing food as an afterthought and running to Chipotle. As it stands, I only eat out maybe tops, 4 times a month, but it seems to really add up!

  3. Krystal says:

    I think its super doable. its obviously easier to eat out but i totally think u can do it. a really super easy recipe i use a lot.. I cut up broccoli carrots red peppers and little red potatos.. and some mushrooms if u like mushrooms. and then i bought some italian seasoning with rosemary and thyme.. and put rosemary all over it.. and some olive oil and then just bake it in the oven for like 20 minutes.. that with some chicken with rosemary. with a little salad.. and its perfect.. I made that for my boyfriends mom the other day and she was so insanely impressed. and i was like.. i didnt even do anything.. it fed 5 people and it cost me 12 dollars.. not including the chicken. thats just with the veggies i bought. and u can always make it and save it for later..

    • Ruby says:

      Ooh, 5 people for $12? That I can handle! I appreciate the simple recipe- with grad school, a sporadic work sched (I worked from 3-11pm yesterday, and tomorrow I work from 5:30am-3pm then class) and stuff, cooking needs to be as simple as it is affordable! Thanks Krystal!

  4. […] s1.parentNode.insertBefore(s, s1); })(); TweetI am keeping an even keel on my quest to go without dining out for 30 days which started on April 15th.   Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t consider myself to be a […]


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