‘I AM NOT OK’ Mom Feeds Family of 4 at Fazoli’s for $10, Claims It’s Cheaper than Cooking at Home

In a world where grocery prices are rising, dining out at restaurants is becoming more expensive. Once known for their budget-friendly menus, fast food joints are now charging higher prices for even the simplest of meals.

But is it possible that some hidden gems are out there offering meals cheaper than cooking at home? Social media user Jill Castlen seems to think so, and her revelation has sparked quite a discussion.

The Increase Costs of Eating Out

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With the recent increase in grocery prices, it’s no surprise that people are turning to restaurants for a convenient meal. However, they’re finding that dining out is no longer the budget-friendly option it once was.

A $5 footlong at Subway now costs over $10, and a McDouble, once part of McDonald’s Dollar Menu, can set you back over $3 at select locations.

Wendy’s, too, has joined the trend by raising its prices.

Viral Video Post About Eating Out Cheaper

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Amidst the rising costs of eating out, Jill Castlen took to a social media platform to share her secret dining spot: Fazoli’s, an Italian-American restaurant.

What’s the catch? Fazoli’s offers kids’ meals for just $1.99 on Tuesdays, making it an unbeatable deal for families. With the help of an app coupon, Castlen manages to feed her partner and two children for approximately $10.

“You expect me to be going and cooking something when I could just come to eat a whole meal, and everybody gets their stomachs full for $10? Wrong-o,” Castlen declares in her viral video.

The video showcases her family enjoying a meal at Fazoli’s, their satisfied smiles seemingly proof of the cost-saving triumph.

Social Media Users Sparked Curiosity

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Jill Castlen’s revelation sparked a wave of responses from users who shared their own budget dining discoveries. One user confessed to frequenting Costco for hot dogs and pizza, where a mere $6 fills their family’s bellies.

Another boasted about their ability to feed a family of five for less than $10 with leftovers for the next day, courtesy of Aldi.

“I’m in Denver where EVERYWHERE is expensive but you can get a chicken combo with two sides at King Soopers (Kroger) for $5,” one user enthusiastically shared.

However, not everyone was fortunate enough to find such affordable dining options. Some users expressed frustration with rising restaurant costs, claiming to spend $30 or even $60 for a meal with their families.

“Fazolis also SLAPS, used to eat there in college a bunch.”

“I paid $13.38 for a chicken supreme combo with borounds at Bojangles today. I AM NOT OK”

Cheaper Dining, What’s The Benefit?

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The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the typical American household allocates approximately $3,000 annually for dining out. It’s worth noting that even an individual dining solo qualifies as a household in this calculation.

Feeling skeptical about reaching that expenditure? Let’s dig deeper.

Suppose you indulge in restaurant lunches from Monday to Friday throughout the year, with each meal costing you around $10 (a reasonable estimate for most dining spots). In that case, your weekly tab amounts to $50. Similarly, if you opt for dinner outings two to three times weekly or rely on takeout and delivery, it still counts as “dining out.”

Considering the delivery minimums and extra fees, the cost of staying in isn’t significantly lower.

Spending $50 weekly on restaurant meals accumulates to a total of $2,500 per year, which aligns closely with the national average. This expenditure constitutes nearly half of the average American’s annual food budget.

Eating out at restaurants may seem like a series of small expenses, but the little adjustments can yield significant savings.

For instance, if you choose to brew your $2 daily coffee at home from Monday to Friday, you’ll find yourself with an extra $40 in your pocket each month. By contemplating small, easily implementable changes like this, you’re taking the first steps towards breaking the restaurant habit and paving the way for saving towards more substantial goals.

Revealed At Forum: What Others Think About Dining At Costco

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The discussion at Reddit involves an individual sharing their positive experiences with Costco, where they have been a member since 1986. They briefly mention their employment at Costco as an e-commerce project manager and participation in the corporate mentoring program.

Despite their admiration for the company, they express dissatisfaction with its political inclinations.

The discussion also touches on a personal experience related to using Costco’s food court as an affordable lunch option during a financially challenging period, highlighting the convenience and savings it offered compared to eating in the school cafeteria

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Image Credit: Krakenimages.com/DepositPhotos.
  1. bls.gov/opub/reports/consumer-expenditures/2015/pdf/home.pdf
  2. reddit.com/r/Costco/comments/13ssmle/costco_food_court_as_daily_meals/
  3. quora.com/What-do-people-think-about-Costco

This article was produced and syndicated by Viral Chatter. It was inspired by this video:

@notmamajill♬ original sound – Mama Jill after dark

Martha A. Lavallie
Martha A. Lavallie
Author & Editor | + posts

Martha is a journalist with close to a decade of experience in uncovering and reporting on the most compelling stories of our time. Passionate about staying ahead of the curve, she specializes in shedding light on trending topics and captivating global narratives. Her insightful articles have garnered acclaim, making her a trusted voice in today's dynamic media landscape.