When the ads for our two local grocery stores come in the mail on Wednesdays I go through and write down all the things I might possibly buy along with their prices. Then, I go through those items with Brando (thanks, honey, for being a coworker on this) and we cull out any unnecessary items like the three desserts I'll more than likely have on there, or the tons of meat that somehow ends up on the list. After my list is pared down I create meals out of the items that are left and throw a few of the basics on the list.
When that's done I total up what the items we're buying is going to cost us and make sure the total cost doesn't equal more than $10 per each individual dinner. If we have lunches, snacks, breakfasts, and other items in there as has been the case the last two times, score!