PP Week 2: Where our money went.

The cost of change: an initial look at how the plant paradox has stacked up to our regular food shopping.

We have officially embarked on Phase II of The Plant Paradox* Program (AKA The Program).

This week marked our first in Phase II of The Program. As a result, we had a few items that we needed to get to stock our kitchen, as well as a few things we wanted to try (AKA dark chocolate that is 72% or higher and does not contain heavy metals).

We did manage to use a lot of the greens from Phase I this week because I totally overbought. I was hoping that would impact our spending for the week, but it turns out it didn’t. Bummer.

We also ordered our very first Butcher Box*! We were so excited to finally find a cost-effective source for grass fed and finished beef and pastured chicken. We’ve already had one of the steaks and OMG is it good. Looking forward to trying some of the chicken next. (If you click on the link for Butcher Box, you’ll get $10 off your first order!)

Menu for the week:


  • Hard boiled egg and mixed greens
  • Eggs and sweet potatoes
  • Eggs and roasted broccoli + cauliflower
  • PP Green Smoothie

  • Coconut Almond Flour Muffin in a Mug (p. 325) + greens
  • Cinnamon Flaxseed Muffin (p. 327) + greens
  • Salads (with walnuts and figs, with shredded carrots and chicken, with mushrooms and blue cheese for The Husband)

Here’s what we got.

From Butcher Box:

Beef + Chicken Box (we’re getting it every other month). Contents included

  • 2 10-oz New York Strip
  • 4 6-oz Top Sirloin
  • 2lb Ground Beef
  • 3lb Chicken Drumsticks
  • 3lbs Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • Bacon

Total cost: $119

From Trader Joe’s:

  • Pint of Organic Strawberries
  • Just Beets Beet Chips
  • Blanched Almond Flour
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Toasted Sesame Oil
  • Macadamia Nuts
  • Pistachios
  • Trimmed Leeks
  • Organic Blackberries
  • Organic Baby Carrots
  • Organic Broccoli Florets
  • Artichokes – 4
  • Riced Cauliflower
  • 1lb bag of lemons x2
  • Plantain Chips
  • Bananas
  • Organic Romaine Hearts x2
  • Hass Avocados x3
  • Sliced White Mushrooms
  • Organic Cauliflower x2
  • Madame Chevre Goat Cheese
  • Goat Cheese Crumbles
  • French Brie
  • Asparagus
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Dozen Omega-3 Eggs x2

Total cost: $109.14

From Fresh Market: 

  • Barney Butter Blanched Almond Butter
  • Madecasse Pure Vanilla Extract
  • Swerve Granulated Sweetener
  • Alter Eco Blackout Dark Chocolate
  • Theo 85% Dark Chocolate
  • TFM Bittersweet 72% Dark Chocolate

Total Cost: $45.64

Grand Total: $273.78

A few things to note:

  1. We plan to get a Butcher Box* order every OTHER month, making that purchase average out to $15/week for amazing quality beef and chicken. I am extremely hopeful that this will cause our next few weeks to be super low because all we need are a few bags of lettuce and some other veggies.
  2. Holy fuck is almond butter expensive. That jar set us back $15.99. I plan to make that thing last for an entire year.
  3. Real vanilla extract is also expensive ($9.99). I seriously need to head to Penzey’s to stock up, because mama was NOT happy about spending that much on a tiny jar of extract.
  4. Those sugar alternatives are wild. $8.49 for a small bag of Swerve.
  5. This doesn’t include anything we purchased for our 3-year-old. Her stuff amounted to an extra $10.05. I didn’t include it because it isn’t PP compliant and that’s what I’m looking to track.
  6. Our normal spending at the store is anywhere from $115-150 for 2 adults and a child. So the shopping at Trader Joe’s and Fresh Market wasn’t too much higher than what we would have spent otherwise, but that does include meat and chicken.

I am hopeful that I can keep our shopping for Week 3 under $100 to help balance out some of this spending. Fingers crossed that’s possible.


*This is an affiliate link

Looking to create change in your life?

Enter your name and email below to get access to my free library of e-books, worksheets, and resources to help you embrace change, inspire creativity, and feel a deep sense of satisfaction with your life.

Written by

Emily Levenson is learning to trust her gut all over again. She is committed to listening to AND following the nuggets of wisdom her gut has been dishing out for decades. You can follow Emily's journey here on the blog, through the Nourish + Flourish podcast, and through her posts on Instagram.

1 comment / Add your comment below

  1. 2 things:
    1) holy what?! There’s a Fresh Market in Pittsburgh?!
    2) almond butter is silly expensive but also Barney Butter is among the most expensive options in my experience. Depending on the specs you need for this protocol, there might be more economical options. We make our own which is still somewhat pricey because the expensive part of the whole equation is almonds

Leave a Reply