13 ways to save money on groceries(Read article summary)
Whether you live to eat or eat to live, eating costs money. Here's 13 ways you can save money next time you head to the grocery store.
The following article was written by Travis from ChristianMoneyMountain.com.
I havenâ€™t been to the grocery store in 3 weeks, which means Iâ€™ve been living off peanut butter and frozen pizzas the past week. We generally buy groceries every 2 weeks, but we were really busy last weekend and didnâ€™t make it to the store. Grocery shopping isnâ€™t on our list of favorite things to do either. I can think of a lot better ways to spend an hour. But unfortunately itâ€™s necessary, and today is the day. Here are 13 ways to save money on groceries that can actually keep more money in your pocket!
1. Donâ€™t shop when youâ€™re hungry
Everyone has heard this by now. My wife and I have a horrible time sticking to this. It seems we always go in the mornings when we havenâ€™t had breakfast. Then we wonder when we get home why we have so many pop tarts and boxes of cereal.
2. Check the Ads
Most stores will offer big sales in order to get you into their store. Identify the sale items you need, and take advantage. Just donâ€™t get tricked into buying something you donâ€™t need.
3. Make a List
Taking 10 minutes to write out a list before you go to a store can save you tons of money. How many times have you bought items that you already had at home? Or how many times have you been enticed by an item that you really didnâ€™t need? Making a list ensures you buy only what you need, and nothing more. This also saves you from making multiple trips to the store to pick up things your forgot.
4. Take a Calculator
You should have only so much money budgeted for groceries per month. For my wife and I, itâ€™s around $350 a month. This means you need to keep a close watch on what you spend. Itâ€™s very easy to spend more than you planned once you walk into the store. So keep up with all your costs on a calculator.
5. Make a Menu for the week
Decide what you want to eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner before you go. For us, its usually spaghetti, chicken quesidillas, tacos, cheeseburgers, and a meat and three one night. We pretty much have a routine and just switch up one or two meals a week.
6. Stretch your Menu
Plan your meals so you have leftovers. This always happens when youâ€™re only feeding two. This means dinner one night, is usually lunch the next day.
7. Donâ€™t waste food
This goes along with eating leftovers. Donâ€™t waste food. Weâ€™re really bad about this. We throw away a lot. One study said the average family wastes 14% of the food it buys. Thatâ€™s a lot of money over the course of a year.
8. Make use of coupons
This is another area we donâ€™t do very good at. Iâ€™m sensing a theme. I read about lots of people that save lots of money by using coupons. The opportunity is there, you just have to be willing to put in the work. For more strategies, check out these tips to start saving money with coupons.
9. Shop Alone
I know alot of you moms are thinking, I wish. If you do your shopping alone you donâ€™t have to worry about your kids or spouse leading you astray and convincing you to buy random items you donâ€™t need.
10. Buy Local Produce
During the spring and summer take advantage of your local farmers. They often will have fresher produce, at cheaper prices. Or you could consider doing it yourself. Grow your own garden, and sell or give away what youâ€™re not able to keep.
11. Compare Stores
Look at prices between stores. We usually find ourselves shopping at Walmart, and I believe them to be generally cheaper on most things. But thereâ€™s other stores that you can buy items cheaper at such as Aldi or SaveALot.
12. Look Down
When doing your shopping, pay attention to the items closer to the floor. The cheaper items are usually lower, while the pricier items are at eye level.
13. Buy in Bulk
If thereâ€™s non-perishable items on your list that youâ€™re buying every week, consider buying that item in bulk. By buying in bulk youâ€™ll save money that would otherwise be spent on packaging and advertising. Some of the items to consider buying in bulk might be peanut butter, canned goods, and ketchup.
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