Saving Money Part 3: Food
Just in case you missed any of the Saving Money Series:
The Electric Bill
Around the House
Today we are going to talk about saving money on Food! This is one of my downfalls. I’m kind of a foody (kind of happens when your majoring in food and nutrition). Some people spend money on shoes or clothes, I like food, good food. Lots of people think eating healthy can cost a lot, but you can still find good deals and not spend a lot. In the long run eating healthy will save you money on healthcare cost and of course you will feel better.
The best tip: make food from scratch! It is very cost efficient and much healthier then buying packaged junk.
On that note. Grow your own food! I have a dream of having my own little homestead with a huge garden and chickens! Have to get a house first!
Have a budget and stick to it! Say you have $50. Spend $45 on your normal groceries and save the rest for sale or bulk items to stock up on. But of course don’t spend over!
Shop with only cash! This has been really great for us. It all started when we got married and the bank kept sending (literally 8 times) my new debit card to my parents address with the wrong name on it. So we gave up and decided to go just with cash and I love it! I can’t spend what I don’t have.
Don’t go to the grocery store hungry you always end up buying things that you don’t really need.
Menu plan– plan out what your going to eat for at least dinner every week. I usually just eat leftovers for lunch everyday so dinner is all I plan for but some people plan out lunch and breakfast too.
Check your pantry. Know what you already have and use it to menu plan. Keep a check list hanging up so you know what you have and what you need.
Make a list of what your going to buy and stick to it.
Stock up on sale items. If you see an item at rock bottom prices get a lot of them it probably won’t happen again for awhile. You should also consider saving up money for the future, more specifically, your retirement. Many people aged over 55 are trying to save up for their retirement by using equity release services such as the ones found at https://www.keyadvice.co.uk/equity-release, you should pay them a visit.
Buy frozen and canned veggies. They last longer and you don’t have as much food waste.
Eat less meat! Its the most expensive part of the meal. Choose other less expensive sources of protein like beans, quinoa, or eggs.
Get good at only buying things while on sale. I must confess I always think I am a good shopper. I look for sales but I always spend my full budget and it still doesn’t seem like enough food. This last week I sent my husband to the grocery store he spent much less than budget and got really good food. He did buy some things not organic that we usually buy organic but still he did great. I think he will be doing a lot more of the shopping from now on.
Coupons! You can even score organic or health food coupons. You can find coupons in the Sunday paper and at Coupons.com
Shop your weekly ads then match up some of the coupons clicked to get an extra budget.
Buy in bulk (and you don’t need a Sam’s membership). Lots of grocery stores have a bulk section where you can get lots of dry goods at very reasonable prices. Even here in southern Illinois we have a local co-op that has great prices.
Stop eating out as much as possible. People think even McDonalds is a good deal when in reality it would cost you less to make all that food rather than buy it at their restaurant.
Make a special dinner at home for date night instead of going out. Or sometimes we will make something quick and then go do something fun like take a hike.
Left overs! Always a great way to save!
Choose oatmeal over cereal. Cereal is really expensive and usually not very filling. Try this great overnight oats recipe.
Does your grocery store have a discount card? We use Kroger a lot and I love there discount card that you can also upload coupons on get discounts on gas!
Shop at Aldi or other stores like it. They have great prices on stuff! I love that they have cheap almond milk and organic soy milk.
Shop using unit pricing. Look at the price per ounce on the price tag. Just because something is on sale doesn’t mean the price is better then another brand.
Which brings me to buy store brands. They are pretty much the same thing.
Stop buying juices or other drinks including alcohol. They’re extras that you don’t really need. Drink water instead.
Get special items like cookies, chips and ice cream once in a while. You don’t need to have them every day! They just raise your grocery bill and are empty calories!
Shop more than one store to get the best deals.
Speaking of saving money, it might be a good idea to try and save money on your broadband as well, from what my friend tells me, it is an outgoing that people often pay to much for. He got a great deal through Usave. If you’re interested, look here for the best internet deals.
If its something you buy often write the normal price down so you have something to compare it to.
Go when your kids are at school or find someone to watch them. Kids tend to want extra stuff while your there.
What are some ways you save on groceries? I would love to hear about them!
This was part of the Homestead Barn Hop, the Morris Tribe, Sew Chatty, Sew Can Do, Craft-O- Maniac, Homemaker on a Dime, Frugally Sustainable, Thrifty Decorating,
I always buy stuff on sale. I usually have over 80 percent of my cart sale items. I can’t hardly stand to buy at full price. Don’t forget the clearance bin. Knowing when and how your store marks down meat and dairy items can really save a bundle on those items. There is one store locally that really gets good deals on day old meats. they mark them way down and If I buy and freeze right away I can get 3-4 times the meat that I would be able to otherwise. The other day I got 2 london broil steaks for $1.39 lb and ground beef for $1.19 lb and Salmon for $3.29 lb. I was so excited. I my husband laughs at me when I get excited about sale items at the grocery store. I can’t help it. That is my little guilty pleasure. I love to get a good deal on groceries.
Those are great tips! I get the same way theres nothing like a good deal! Thanks for sharing this!
Awesome ideas! For me, the biggest one is using the leftovers. I am pretty much incapable of making one serving for dinner (for my family of 4). Instead, I almost always have a huge amount of leftovers. I have taken to freezing some of it for later, especially with soups and bean or pasta dishes. Otherwise, I am the only one eating the leftovers, and then I end up still throwing some of them away.
Agreeing with you!! Scratch is the ONLY way to go! KNOW whats going in your food! 🙂 We don’t do canned too much salt very little nutrition. Fresh is best or Frozen. Now, our grocery stores will put the slightly bruised veggies out on a rack SUPER cheap.. But them up!! Especially peppers and onions you can dice and freeze for future use! Use up your leftovers! We usually will have that for lunch the next day, if we have any. 🙂 If you can go out at night, my grocery store makes stuff down at night, so if I hit it a 8-9pm Oh the deals!!!!!
Thanks for all the great info! We don’t do a ton of can food either just beans (even though dry our cheaper), and sometimes pineapple or something! I’m going to try to go shopping at night! Thanks
I like to view my store’s online sale flyer and make a list from that. I then plan my meals around what is on sale. Works great and saves $$$
Thank so much for all of the great info. I absolutely love your blog and I just found it about 5 minutes ago. 🙂
Thanks so much Julie that is really encouraging!