One of the most common places people overspend is on food, eating out and buying too much at the grocery store. Food is something we obviously can’t live without, but also one of the easiest places to save money in our budget.
Your grocery budget can easily be altered without a major life change. Try a few of these ideas to start, and add tips as you feel more comfortable. I think you’ll see some big savings!
Here are my best 13 tips for saving money on groceries:
1. Make a grocery budget.
Decide how much you are going to spend on groceries monthly or weekly. Take cash out just for groceries if that helps you. If you are just starting out with a budget, I would be more conservative and see how you do. If you do great with that, budget for a little less next month until you find the perfect amount.
2. Start meal planning.
I swear by meal planning, it saves me so much time and money each week. Make a weekly menu, buy your groceries based on that menu, and see the savings add up – both time and money! Check out these 5 easy steps to meal planning to get started.
3. Make a grocery list and stick to it.
Make your list and stick to it when you go to the store. Double check your list before you head out to make sure you didn’t forget anything.
4. Check the sales ad.
I would check the sales ad AFTER you make your list, so you don’t buy things just because they are on sale.
5. Shop only once a week.
The less trips you make to the store, the more you will save. If you make additional trips, you will probably buy additional items. Try to get everything in one trip, and if you forget something, see if you can do without.
6. Cut coupons.
Cut coupons, but only for products you were going to buy anyway or know you will eat. Be careful with couponing. Sometimes you can get a better deal by just buying the store brand instead, no coupon needed.
7. Check deals websites.
I love to look at http://passionatepennypincher.com/ and http://moneysavingmom.com/ to check out their store deals and coupon matchups. They put together great lists that are definitely worth checking out!
8. Buy store brand.
But only if it’s cheaper. We use many store brand items and can’t tell a difference most of the time.
9. Check the unit prices.
Unit prices will tell you the price per ounce, per item in the package, and so on. Sometimes it’s hard to compare prices when different brands have different sizes. The unit price will help you get the best bang for your buck.
10. Buy in season produce.
Produce can be very expensive! I will buy whatever is on sale and rotate our fruits for more variety.
11. Buy meat in bulk.
I love to shop with Zaycon Fresh to get my meat in bulk. I order 40 lbs of chicken and 40 lbs of ground beef about twice a year for the 2 of us. This saves us a lot of money, we always have plenty on hand for freezer cooking, and we don’t have to wait for sales at the grocery store.
(Referral link – If you try them and love them, then you can share your link and get credits to buy meat! More savings!)
12. Check the clearance section.
Check and see if your grocery store has a clearance section. My Publix has one near the pharmacy and I have found some great deals there! I’ve gotten makeup, cleaning products, and grape jelly!
13. Use cash back apps.
Ibotta, Mobisave, and Checkout 51 are apps I have used to get cash back for grocery purchases. You just have to unlock the deals, upload your receipt, and you can claim a gift card or check when you reach a certain amount.
Try out a few of these ideas at a time – no need to overwhelm yourself and feel like you need to try them all from the start. I think you’ll find you are spending considerably less at the grocery store and have extra money for other things in your budget!
Comment below with your favorite tried and true grocery savings tips!
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