Well when I was first starting out on my own in NYC my combo was something like this.1 bag dried lentils, 1 bag dried red kidney beans, 1 bag of long grain rice (not instant), 5 lb bag chicken breasts (w/skin& bones I did my own deboning), some fresh fruit&veggies, eggs, tub Irish oatmeal, assorted bones (free from the butcher), 2u20133 cans of milk, 1u20132 boxes of various pasta, loaf of marked-down bread, 1 can of tomatoes, 2 cans of tuna and maybe a 1u20132 lbs of ground beef (if I could afford it). All this coupled with whatever leftovers were available and whatever might be available in my fridge and/or pantry. That was more than enough for 2 people at the time.I bought everything in NJ on my day off after Iu2019d drop my Husband off at work. He worked in NJ and had a old 1974 Plymouth Valiant that he used for the commute to work. Iu2019d also do all the laundry that day too. Then Iu2019d pick him up after he got out of work, we filled the car up with gas, paid the toll and came back home and unloaded the car. The food and gas were much cheaper in NJ at that time. The next day Iu2019d stay in all day and cook everything for the week, portion out our meals and then freeze everything I wasnu2019t using.I also clipped every coupon that I could find, tried patronizing stores that doubled or tripled my coupons, bought the store brands, the dented cans, sale items and marked down items. Sometimes Iu2019d even go to different supermarkets if they both had what I needed on sale. And if non perishable items were on sale Iu2019d try and stock up on it, especially when toiletries went on sale. I used to always be able to buy toothpaste and cereal for pennies, sometimes they were even free. I didnu2019t do the Costco or BJu2019s thing either. Thereu2019s only so much ketchup and gigantic cans that I can used before it goes bad.We worked different shifts, he had regular days and hours, my shifts and days rotated.off S/S. We rarely seen each other, in the beginning. But he always had a hot dinner, even if it was heated up in the oven or microwave. We rarely ate out and always packed our lunches too.Itu2019s amazing how far you can stretch a food budget, when itu2019s done out of necessity as opposed to entertainment. We ate food at home. Going out didnu2019t include eating at restaurants. Soups and casseroles can be an amazing, hearty, cheap meals and you use up all your leftovers that way too. We had minimal bills, no loans, no cable, no cellphone, no credit cards and 35% of what we made covered all our bills, everything, not just rent.In 5 years we managed to amass enough money to be able to buy our first apartment, in NYC no less and before we were thirty. Try that now. It can be done but itu2019s not easy, you have to follow a strict budget. Itu2019s also might take awhile longer than 5 years.Edit: I forgot coffee, cheap red wine and the occasional bottle of booze too. It also helped that my Husband used to receive a huge amounts of great, French wine, free at work. They were tips. That really helped out too.