The One With Frugality & Dieting Under HKD250 A Week

Yes, you have read the post title correctly. I have been wanting to write this post for some time now, and have been making notes over the weeks to make it useful to you.

This is for you who, like me, wants to be on a diet (in order to lose weight) and to live frugally (i.e. to spend only where necessary, when it comes to food) especially during the working week.

This is how you, my friend, can plan your meals for a week of five working days and spend less than HK$250. Yes, that’s two hundred and fifty Hong Kong dollars.

Breakfast – choose and eat wisely.

My favourite breakfast for the month.

As the first meal of the day, you need that kick start your day right. We all know how important the first cup of coffee is, and what’s more wonderful than to hit up the nearest Starbucks or Pacific Coffee? But, be warned; each of those lovely grande-sized coffee sets you back at least HK$30 a piece. Doing that daily, even if only on working days, can make a sizable dent in your budget.

My solution; stretch that “latte factor” to the maximum. I will have that brewed coffee only twice a week, and make my own coffee using house brand coffee and skimmed milk for the rest. A medium-sized bottle of home-brand coffee powder lasted me at least two weeks (tried-and-tested), and I need only a small pack of skimmed milk as sweetener (I don’t take sugar with coffee).

For that power punch, go for some sweet pastries in the morning. It is the only carb I take for the day, and usually I will go for my favourite; egg tart!

Breakfast at Luk Yu Teahouse

Checkpoint #1
Grande-sized Americano with extra shot * 2 – HK$62
Daily sweet pastry – HK$5 average * 5 = HK25
Half bottle of medium-sized home brand coffee powder – HK$12
One small pack of skimmed milk – HK5
Sub total – HK104

Lunch – cook and pack your meals.

My daily lunch

Every Sunday I will do one week worth of grocery shopping, with a conscious effort to keep my spending under HK$100. It is a wonder how restrained you can become in making purchase decision when you have a budget in mind.

As a rule, I stick to my no-carb diet for lunch, so I get one whole lot of mixed vegetables (variety is king) and two large packs of chicken fillets. Cook them in olive oil and split into five containers. Freeze them. Thaw it in the office during lunch time.

The downside of this, of course, is that you eat the same thing over five consecutive lunches. So the key, then, is to really make sure you can whip up some pretty delicious treats for yourself, and that each week you vary your ingredient selection based on the same vegetables and meat food groups.


Checkpoint #2
A variety of vegetables (greens, baby corns, mushrooms) – HK$45
Two large packs of chicken fillets – HK$42
Sub total – HK87

Dinner – ration and eat sparingly.

Peking Duck Wrap

As the last meal of the day, I usually eat in very small portions, and for these I will go for a bit of prepacked stuff (afterall, truth to be told, my own cooking isn’t that great). For the past two weeks I have been alternating between Best Buy’s chives and meat dumplings (over thirty pieces, good for at least four meals), and Circle K’s delicious Peking Duck Wrap (which is the highlight of the week for me, and I can split the portion into two).

I also add on some soya bean milk (two large packs from Park n’ Shop, good for a week) and energy bars whenever I have a gym session, which is twice a week.

Checkpoint #3
Best Buy’s chives and meat dumplings – HK$18 per pack
Circle K’s Peking Duck Wrap – HK$17
Vitasoy Large Pack * 2 – HK$14
Energy Bar * 2 – HK$10
Sub total – HK$59

The Conclusion

There you have it, three meals a day, five days a week, all for HK$250 a week. Sure, to some of you it might sound a little extreme, but trust me, it is something that can be done. You may give yourself some buffer – like 10% for the occassional peanuts indulgence or vices of the beer-y variety – and still you would be eating healthier than 80% of the population (some random figures to make this sentence sounds good).

So what is in it for you? If you are, like me previously, use at least HK$100 a day (that’s on the low side for me, actually), in a week you would be spending your way through HK$700 a week, weekends included. And that’s if your eating pattern on weekends remains the same as weekdays. Chances are you eat out more on weekends, perhaps with some seafood lunch, or some tasty sweet treats, or some real dinner in a proper restaurant, you would, say, spend an extra HK$300.

That rounds you up to HK$1000 a week.

So if you stick to this meal plan for your working days, you will have HK$750 left for the weekend. Can you imagine the amount of fine better dining and shopping and other random vices you can partake in with that extra money over two days?!

Of course, if you are like me, you will put some of that savings aside for rainy days. Heh.

And yes on another note. When you are this well-planned on meals for the week, you’ll appreciate your meals out very much more. Every morsels, every dish, every bite, then, become blogworthy.

I feel so loved that you read till the end of this lengthy post! This is what keep me blogging, my friends. Please spread the love by “Like”-ing this post, and get more out of You Got Me Blogging by subscribing to our RSS feed, or the weekly email newsletter.

2 Thoughts on “The One With Frugality & Dieting Under HKD250 A Week

  1. Pingback: The One With Ngau Kee Food Cafe At Central (牛記茶室) on You Got Me Blogging

  2. This is cool! And so interested! Are u have more
    posts like this? Please tell me, thanks

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