Are you looking to save money on groceries? If so, you’re in the right place. Let’s face it, grocery shopping is a part of everyone’s life whether they like it or not. It used to be fun saving money on groceries when I was purchasing foods that had coupons available all the time. But, that’s not the case anymore.
Over the last few years, we’ve changed our eating habits. We don’t eat as much processed food as we used to. Because of this, I’ve had to find other ways to save money on groceries.
Saving money on groceries is one of my biggest budget struggles. I budget a certain amount of money every month for groceries and sometimes I really struggle with meeting my budget goal.
It’s even more frustrating when I see other bloggers posting that they spend $70 a week on their groceries. Maybe they do and maybe they don’t. My goal is to give you a realistic view of saving money on groceries.
I currently have our grocery budget set to $150 a week. We are a family of five and we are not overeaters. My daughters are 13 years old (they’re twins) and my son is 10 years old. We also challenge ourselves to eat at home 7 days a week. So my grocery budget covers food for an entire week.
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I don’t have time to run to the grocery store multiple times a week. I homeschool my kids so most of my time is tied up. I create a meal plan each week which helps me stick to my grocery budget. This allows me to take one trip to the grocery store each week.
I’m excited to share with you how I save money on groceries. It’s something I’ve been working on for a long time. It has really benefited our family. Saving money on groceries has allowed us to use the money we saved to do other things.
How to Save Money on Groceries
1. Make a grocery list
Making a grocery list is so important. If I went into the grocery store without a list, I wouldn’t know what I really needed. I have a pretty good idea of what I have in my pantry but I would probably forget something or buy something I didn’t really need.
2. Eat with the seasons
Sometimes during the winter, I get a strawberry craving. Strawberries are out of season in the winter and if they are in the store they will be top dollar. Produce that’s in season is usually cheaper. We usually eat lots of nectarines in the summer because they are much cheaper. Satisfy your craving while produce is in season.
3. Plan your meals around the “sale ad”
The grocery store usually puts out a “sale ad” once a week. I try really hard to plan my meals around the food on sale. There’s nothing more annoying than planning a meal and then going to the grocery store and the items are full price.
4. Make a meal plan
I love making meal plans. It takes me about an hour a week to make it but it makes my week easier. I don’t have to “think up” something to make for dinner every day. I’m at a very busy stage of life and I’m exhausted by the time dinner rolls around. It also helps me buy only what I need for dinners.
5. Use coupons
Learning how to coupon has saved us so much money. I use a handful of coupons and I use my grocery store shopping app. My grocery store shopping app has a lot of great offers. Make sure to check with your store to see if they have a shopping app. Most stores do nowadays. If they do, make sure to use it.
6. Stop buying name brands
Most of the time name brands are more expensive. With a name brand, you are usually getting the same product as a generic brand. Make sure to check the ingredients and if they are the same, go with the generic brand.
7. Stop buying toiletry items
Toiletry items are usually overpriced at the grocery store. You should have a good idea of what you are willing to pay for toiletries. Drugs stores usually run pretty good sales on toiletry items.
8. Start using “rain checks”
Did you know that you can request a “rain check” if an item is advertised “on sale” and is out of stock? This is a great way to get that item the next time you are at the store for the “sale” price.
9. Don’t go to the store hungry
Have you ever gone grocery shopping when you were hungry? I did and it was a huge mistake. I learned my lesson pretty quick. I ended up buying things that I wouldn’t normally eat.
10. Try to leave your children at home
It’s very rare that I take my kids to the grocery store. Thankfully, they are old enough to stay home alone now. When they were little I’d wait for my husband to come home from work and then I’d head to the store. It’s easier for me to concentrate when my kids are not at the store with me.
11. Shred your own cheese and cut your own vegetables
I used to buy packaged cheese and bagged lettuce. I never realized that I was getting less for my money. Now I buy a block of cheese and shred it myself. It tastes so much better than bagged cheese. The same goes for lettuce and vegetables. I actually enjoy cutting them now and they don’t go bad as quickly as the bagged vegetables.
12. Know your “bottom line”
You’ve probably been grocery shopping long enough to know your “bottom line”. That basically means you know the least you will pay for something. If you haven’t figured this out yet, grab a notebook and write down the items you buy. Keep track of the lowest price you’ve purchased the item for. Eventually, you will know the “bottom line” for the items you purchase.
Those are my tips for saving money on groceries. I use every one of these tips myself. Hopefully, some of these tips can help you with your grocery budget.
Do you have any tips to share about saving money on groceries? I’d love to hear them.