Only NOK 1,500 per month on food

Only NOK 1,500 per month on food

ØRising food prices and rising costs have prompted many of us to try to make smart choices and downsize where we can. But in practice, it is difficult to achieve clear and lasting results.

However, there is one woman who has already achieved this, Linda Wedding Reitan (51) from Skane. She has a food budget that would make most people roll their eyes.

-We were living on food stamps


– Some months, I spend only NOK 500 on food, but as a general rule, I spend between NOK 1,500 and NOK 3,000 a month on food for myself and my 19-year-old son, who is with me from time to time, she tells KK.

Planning purchases: - When I shop, I think about the distant future.  If I find a good deal, I shop often and freeze it, says Linda.  Photo: private

Planning purchases: – When I shop, I think about the distant future. If I find a good deal, I shop often and freeze it, says Linda. Photo: private
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– He had to take cost-saving measures

Linda’s story began 20 years ago, when she became the sole breadwinner for two young children. She had a completely normal income and had to take some drastic measures to get her finances moving. The hard way, I learned strategies for saving, planning, and acting smart.

– It was difficult, and I had to take measures to save money. But I always had proper food on the table, despite the limited budget. I’m not afraid of dates, and I’ve been eating expired yogurt for five months. She advises that you just have to smell and taste if they are edible.

He had NOK 500 a week for food

He had NOK 500 a week for food


Linda saves a lot by thinking differently and planning her purchases. She’s against throwing away food, and has learned some clever tricks that can definitely help many.

Linda uses the money she saves to travel, and has already taken three trips abroad this year.

Search for offers: - Linda says: - I am not afraid of dates, and I ate yogurt that expired five months ago.  Photo: private

Search for offers: – Linda says: – I am not afraid of dates, and I ate yogurt that expired five months ago. Photo: private
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You won’t waste food

Linda has a strong commitment to food waste and economics, so she started sharing tips with others on social media some time ago. This has resulted in over 32,000 followers for Her TikTok account is @frkreitan.

– She says: – I receive a lot of inquiries from people who are suffering, who say they have saved thousands of kroner by following my advice.

Here Linda shares her best saving tips:

1. Go to the grocery store in the evening

-I go to the store on Friday and Saturday evenings. It is possible to find ribs and ground beef for half the price because of the dates. “I break it into small portions and freeze it, so it lasts a long time,” she explains.

2. Control

Many people don’t check what they have in their cupboards before shopping, and there is a lot to be saved by having an overview.

Christmas table: - Drop it

Christmas table: – Drop it


-When I shop, I think about the distant future. If I find a good deal, I shop often and freeze them. Last week, for example, I bought ten packages of pie dough that were on sale, Linda says.

Therefore, there is a lot to be saved through long-term thinking and planning.

3. Buy cheaper brands

– Don’t be suspicious of store brands, they’re often just as good as more expensive foods, says Linda.

4. Use online shopping

Imagine that if you shop four times a week and buy two bags each time, you will spend more than NOK 1,700 per year on plastic bags.

“I have used online shopping for years, and I recommend it to everyone,” she says.

A good offer: “Last week, for example, I bought ten packages of pie dough that were on sale,” Linda says.  Photo: private

A good offer: “Last week, for example, I bought ten packages of pie dough that were on sale,” Linda says. Photo: private
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Many people want to save more

In November 2023, Respons Analysis conducted a survey among 1,040 people on behalf of Sparebank 1, to find out whether people were planning to take money-saving measures at Christmas.

The survey shows that:

  • 25% will buy less expensive Christmas gifts this year.
  • 16% would buy fewer Christmas gifts.
  • 15 percent would spend nothing or less money on an advent calendar.
  • 19% will spend nothing or less on clothing and shoes.
  • 18 percent will shop for cheaper food and drink at Christmas.

-The clothes you wore last Christmas will be just as beautiful this year. You don’t need to buy anything new. These are all good measures that do not affect the Christmas rest, Magne Gundersen, a consumer economist at Sparebank1 and well-known from Luksusfallen, tells KK.

A party with gifts and food can still be a little less expensive.

Selling clothes from

Selling clothes from “The Crown”


Christmas dinner can be made cheaply

-The Christmas dinner most people eat in Norway is pork ribs. It’s a very affordable Christmas dinner, especially if you buy it frozen and on sale. Then you can get it for less than NOK 50 per kilo. “I don’t think people will taste the difference if it’s frozen or not,” Gundersen says.

Accessories such as sauerkraut and ready-made cream of rice are also cheap and often on sale before Christmas.

– Then, all that’s left is potatoes and sauce, so ribs can simply be a very cheap dinner, Gundersen says.

Food Bargains: Linda often buys from the store's discount counter, where many items are half price due to the date.  Image: private.

Food Bargains: Linda often buys from the store’s discount counter, where many items are half price due to the date. Image: private.
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Research in advance

It is a good idea to read Christmas food tests in newspapers, because price and quality are often evaluated there. It then becomes easier to compare and make smarter choices.

At Christmas time, we often spend a lot of money on foods such as cold cuts, sweets and snacks, so it can be a good idea to look out for good deals. Chains also have their own cheap brands that cost less than more popular brands. Few people might notice the difference.

-I myself participated in the blind auditions and missed a lot. Treat everyone to the food they love at Christmas, but it’s possible to cut your food budget without even noticing, Gundersen says.

Regardless of whether you serve pork chops, lutefisk, turkey or cod, the most money you save is substituting the drink.

– Non-alcoholic drinks are much cheaper than drinks containing alcohol. Non-alcoholic drinks are also very kid-friendly, and can at least taste as good, Gundersen says.

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Dalila Awolowo

Dalila Awolowo

"Explorer. Unapologetic entrepreneur. Alcohol fanatic. Certified writer. Wannabe tv evangelist. Twitter fanatic. Student. Web scholar. Travel buff."

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