Before You Go:
You can’t just walk into the grocery store and go all willy nilly. You need a plan if you are gonna save money.
PLAN YOUR MEALS.
Write a list of 7 meals that you want to eat this week, and write down all of the ingredients you need to make those meals on your shopping list. This way, you will have no excuse to not eat at home. You will have everything you need to make dinner each night.
Go through your refrigerator and pantry and write down what needs to be replaced. Don’t write any junk on the list – just write down what needs to be replaced. Organize the list into sections – write all of the produce, cold stuff, canned goods together to make the trip go faster.
Get a Sunday paper, or print out some coupons online. You can get Sunday paper delivery for a few bucks a month, and the coupons in there will save you a ton of money! You will also get flyers for local grocery stores that will tell you what items are on sale for the week. Take advantage of those sales and write them down on your list.
Ok, we are ready for the store now. Wait, you need to eat. Eat something before heading to the store. Grocery shopping on an empty stomach leads to disaster.
Produce is what is expensive. You can buy a lot of fresh produce, but there are ways to save money doing it.
- Stay away from packaged produce. Yes lettuce shreds and packaged up pineapple are easy, but they cost so much more because of convenience. Buy a whole pineapple and a whole head of lettuce. Make your own salad instead of buying the bagged kind. Not only will you get more, but it’s cheaper.
- Buy the kind on sale. My family eats a different kind of apple each week because I buy the type that is on sale that week.
- When something is on super-sale, like 10 lemons for $1, buy them up! Use lemons all through the week. Make lemonade, add lemon to some chicken, or make a lemon desert!
Just stay away from the bakery. You want a cake? Bake one yourself from scratch! Tastes so much better, and only costs a couple of dollars. You’re paying for convenience with the bakery.
- Buy in bulk. Be the person getting that huge package of chicken or steaks. It is so much cheaper.
- Buy different kinds for variety. Pork chops and ground beef are so inexpensive.
This is where you can save yourself a lot of money.
- Store coupons – every week I buy a different kind of K-Cup, not cause I care about trying new coffee, but I buy the one with the $2 off store coupon attached to it. Store coupons will save you a lot of money and grocery stores rotate which brands they are on.
- Buy the store brand. Things like flour, paper plates, canned goods…usually so much cheaper in the store brand, and taste the same.
- Stock up. Got a coupon for $2 off 3 cereals? Buy em! They won’t go bad, and you won’t have to buy cereal for a couple of weeks. Anytime you see a great deal, buy in multiples.
WHEN YOU GET HOME
I know, you’re tired. Grocery shopping is hard work and now you get to put everything away. But we have some work to do.
Take all of your produce out and wash it. Yes, you heard me. Wash all of that fruit up and put it in Tupperware. Slice all of the stems off of the strawberries, cut up the pineapple, and wash the grapes. This way, I guarantee that none of your produce will go to waste. How could it? It will be all nice and ready to eat! It won’t be crammed into the crisper drawer and forgotten about.
Remember those huge packages of meat we bought? Divide and conquer the meats. Separate the meat into meal portions and wrap up in foil. Use a permanent marker to write what each type of meat is. This will make it easy to thaw something out and nothing will go to waste!
Here are some more tips to save money.
Don’t eat out. Go through your bank account and see how much you are spending on food. You will be shocked. You could be saving that money! Try to limit eating out to once a week brunch on Sunday or dinner on Friday.
Bring your lunch. My husband keeps a mini refrigerator underneath his desk at work filled with things to make sandwiches, and he also brings leftovers. This will save you money from going out to lunch or to the cafeteria.
Have one fun meal each week. Taco Tuesday I know is a popular one, to make a different type of taco each Tuesday. Or have pizza night every Saturday. It will give you something to look forward to, and you won’t have to think of a meal for that night.
Get your kids involved. If you have kids, they will love to help you in the kitchen. Instead of grabbing Pizza Hut, make your own personal pizzas! It will save you money, it’s healthier, and the kids have so much fun doing it. My girls also love to help me make desserts during the day.
Utilize the Crockpot.
Not only are crockpots easy (throw in ingredients, out comes a meal), but they make a lot! You can make a crockpot of soup and freeze half of it, or make a pot roast with veggies that will feed everyone for a couple of days. There are a ton of easy crockpot recipes online.
I hope these tips help you to save money! I know they do for my family. Let me know if you want more of these money-saving posts!
Thanks for reading 🙂