What average Americans spend on groceries every month in 22 major cities

It's easy to get carried away at the grocery store, especially when it all looks so good.

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It’s easy to get carried away at the grocery store, especially when it all looks so good.
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Jessica Tyler/Business Insider

  • It’s easy to blow your budget on groceries.
  • Because of differences in cost of living, how much people spend on average varies across cities.
  • The average household grocery spend across major US cities ranges from $286 a month in Dallas to nearly $500 a month in Seattle.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

It’s easy to get carried away at the grocery store. She who isn’t tempted fill up a basket or cart with extra chips, produce, ice cream, or frozen meals “just in case” is a hero among us.

Buying in bulk, keeping an eye out for deals, or heading to the grocery store with a detailed meal plan can help reduce that grocery bill.

To find out what the average grocery budget looks like in various cities, we consulted the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Expenditure Surveys. The data covers the most recent period of 2016 to 2017 and reveals average annual expenditures for consumer units 22 major metros in the Northeast, South, West, and Midwest.

A consumer unit, as defined by BLS, is a household ranging in size from one individual to three or more people.

The data show what Americans spend on “food at home,” which includes dairy products, fruits and vegetables, meats, poultry, fish, eggs, cereals and bakery products, annually. We divided the total by 12 to get the monthly cost. The total spent on groceries for the average household ranges from $286 a month in Dallas to nearly $500 a month in Seattle.

Below, find out how much people spend, on average, on groceries in major US cities.


22. Dallas-Fort Worth

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kan_khampanya/Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $286/month

Average total food spend: $547/month


21. Tampa

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Shutterstock / Bonnie Fink

Average grocery spend: $301/month

Average total food spend: $524/month


20. Atlanta

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Getty Images/Justin Sullivan

Average grocery spend: $308/month

Average total food spend: $556/month


19. Phoenix

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Gregory E. Clifford/Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $328/month

Average total food spend: $571/month


18. St. Louis

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Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $336/month

Average total food spend: $608/month


17. Detroit

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Scott Olson/Getty Images

Average grocery spend: $342/month

Average total food spend: $616/month


16. Miami

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Jeffrey Greenberg/Getty Images

Average grocery spend: $343/month

Average total food spend: $586/month


15. New York

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Getty

Average grocery spend: $357/month

Average total food spend: $640/month


14. Baltimore

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Reuters

Average grocery spend: $370/month

Average total food spend: $747/month


13. Los Angeles

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Getty Images

Average grocery spend: $372/month

Average total food spend: $727/month


12 (TIE). Houston

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Trong Nguyen / Shutterstock.com

Average grocery spend: $374/month

Average total food spend: $762/month


11 (TIE). San Francisco

Average grocery spend: $374/month

Average total food spend: $743/month


10. Chicago

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Cavan Images/Getty

Average grocery spend: $376/month

Average total food spend: $680/month


9. Washington, DC

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Anton_Ivanov/Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $392/month

Average total food spend: $765/month


8. Minneapolis-St. Paul

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Tim Roberts Photography/Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $393/month

Average total food spend: $714/month


7. Philadelphia

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Hero Images/Getty

Average grocery spend: $405/month

Average total food spend: $683/month


6. Denver

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Andreas Rentz/Getty

Average grocery spend: $421/month

Average total food spend: $737/month


5. Boston

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f11photo/Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $426/month

Average total food spend: $688/month


4. Anchorage

Average grocery spend: $440/month

Average total food spend: $692/month


3. Honolulu

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Kelly Headrick/Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $430/month

Average total food spend: $836/month


2. San Diego

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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $447/month

Average total food spend: $832/month


1. Seattle

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Shutterstock

Average grocery spend: $498/month

Average total food spend: $913/month