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13 AWESOME TIPS TO SAVE MONEY ON GROCERIES WITHOUT MUCH EFFORT…
I love food, and every time I enter a grocery store I want to buy everything!
Food is such an important part of everyone’s life, but if you are not careful about planning you can easily end up spending far too much on your food bill. The average family in the US spends around 6% to 10% of their monthly budget on food, which is quite a significant amount!
You have absolute control over your grocery bills, and by following these simple steps you will be able to reduce the waste and cut your monthly food budget by as much as half, and still eat delicious and healthy meals!
I know because I managed to save so much on food in the last year, and these tips definitely work!
By following these simple tips, you’ll learn how to shop on a budget doesn’t have to be hard, and can help you to save so much money at the end of the month!
Learn how to save money on groceries
1. Plan your meals
Although I love cooking before I discovered meal planning I always had the wrong veggies in the fridge and I ended up throwing away and wasting food without reason. With meal planning, life gets much simpler and you only buy what you will use. Think about what you need in advance and check what you have left in your kitchen.
This is a great way to eat healthy food while saving money on meals and reducing food waste.
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2. Write a food shopping list and stick to it
Once you have planned your meals, come up with a list of all the missing ingredients and quantities required.
Think about everything you need, and when you go to the shops stick to the list! If an item is not on the list, you don’t need it so don’t buy it! By writing a list, you will save money shopping!
A very good example is the list I put together for 7-Day Easy and Delicious Vegan Dinner Meal Plan.
Check it out here (at the bottom of the post).
3. Shop less often
I used to go food shopping 3-4 times a week, just passing by the supermarket on the way home after work.
You end up buying unnecessary stuff. Reduce the number of times you go shopping. I suggest a big shop once a week.
Not only will this save you time, but money too as you won’t be tempted over and over again by overspending on extra food.
4. Get money back every time you shop
Did you know you can get up to 10% cashback on your grocery shopping? That’s a lot of money! If you spend $4,000 every year on food shopping you can save a whopping $400 by using some free cashback apps!
I don’t know about you, but I think that’s amazing!
There are 2 ways to get money back on your grocery shopping:
- You can earn cashback by shopping online
- You can get money back by uploading your grocery receipts on your phone!
If you want to save money while grocery shopping, get these apps:
Rakuten: With Rakuten, you’ll be able to earn up to 10% cashback on online purchases for things you are going to buy anyway. And it’s completely free! The grocery stores on this app include Safeway, Sam’s Club, and Walmart.
To earn money you just need to download the app, sign up, select the store you need to shop from, and earn money! You’ll also get a $10 free sign up bonus! You’ll be able to see how much cashback you can make on each different store when you select it.
Ibotta: This app is a bit different! You need to take a picture of your grocery receipts with your phone and upload them to the app. You will then receive between $0.25 to a few dollars per receipt as cashback for buying certain products. It’s so easy I can’t believe they actually give you cash for that. And you also get a free $10 sign up bonus! You can check it out here!
5. Eat before you go grocery shopping
If you are hungry, you’ll be tempted to buy more snacks, sweets, and food you don’t really need.
Your stomach will drive you and to avoid that, make sure you only go food shopping after a healthy and filling meal. I swear this will help you stick to your list and save money!
6. Buy seasonal
If you want to stay healthy, you need to eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables.
To keep the costs down, try to only pick products that are in season.
Seasonal food is always the best choice for many reasons. It’s cheaper, it’s healthier and it tastes better.
For example, asparagus is in season during the spring and less expensive. If you want to make a great spring salad with asparagus, make sure you buy them in March and April.
7. Buy store brands
Supermarkets and marketing campaigns trick us into buying more expensive options, but often what you get is the same product with nicer packaging.
As we care about what’s inside the box and not about how pretty it looks, always try store brands and find out if you like them as much (or even more) than branded products. They are often even produced by the same company as the most expensive options!
My favorite options to buy from generic brands:
- Basic ingredients like flour and sugar.
- Cereals: they might not have the fancy packaging than branded cereals, but store brand cereals can be a healthier version. Check the ingredients: many times they will have less added sugar and additives!
- Canned produce like chickpeas, beans, and lentils.
- Frozen produce like peas: branded frozen produce can cost twice as much as the store brand!
8. Eat less meat
Eating too much meat isn’t good for you, but it’s also really expensive.
If you love meat, try to have a meatless day a week, and increase it to a meatless meal a day. You will see a massive difference in your grocery bill and I promise you, you will feel much healthier too.
Substitute meat for beans and lentils as they are a great alternative in casseroles and pasta dishes.
RELATED ARTICLE: 15 QUICK AND EASY LOW-CARB SPIRALIZER RECIPES YOU NEED TO TRY
9. Go homemade
Cook as much as possible from scratch.
It helps for three reasons:
- It’s much healthier as you avoid ready meals, full of bad fats and sugar.
- It saves you money! By buying whole basic ingredients you can spend much less.
- It brings the family together: cooking and preparing a healthy meal is one of the best ways to spend quality time with your kids and family, and nothing compares to eating a delicious meal around the table, prepped with your own hands.
10. Buy whole
Buying whole is often much cheaper than buying smaller portions.
For example, buy a whole chicken, and cut it yourself. Avoid buying pre-packaged vegetables.
A head of lettuce costs much less than a small pre-packaged salad bag, and it’s not full of chemicals and washed so many times that has lost half of the goods in it!
11. Check the price per unit
Grocery stores and food brands are great at disguising the real cost of food.
Always check the price per unit, which is usually on the price tag (tiny under the actual price of the product, so that most people won’t notice it!).
Buying a bigger package isn’t always more convenient. Make sure to get your phone calculators out and figure out what’s more convenient.
12. Organize your fridge
If you want to do your grocery shopping on a budget, don’t underestimate the difference than an organized fridge can make!
My biggest trick to avoid wasting food and consuming all products before they expire is to follow the example that supermarkets use. Always move the food that expires first at the front of the fridge (like vegetables, meat, fresh cheese like ricotta or mozzarella).
Move products with a longer shelf life at the back (like ketchup, hard cheese, drinks).
Check your fridge at least once a week to move things around.
If you have any leftovers use them straight away or freeze them to use them at a later day: things like meat leftovers and vegetable scraps are great to make soup once a week.
13. Make a budget
If you know how much you are spending and you know how much you would like to spend, make a budget.
Decide how much you want to spend per week and stick to it. There are families of four that can spend as little as $20 a week!
Now, this is probably a bit extreme, but I just wanted to point out that the sky’s the limit and you can really spend less and still eat well if you plan for it!
Here you have it: the best tips to save money on groceries
Follow these incredibly easy tips on saving money and you will reduce your grocery budget in half and eat healthy meals every day!