Budgeting for your weekly trip to the grocery store can be frustrating when food prices seem to skyrocket overnight. But you can make your food dollars stretch further with a few simple money-saving tips.
Below, I’m going to share with you 13 different frugal tips to maximize your savings on your next trip to the grocery store.
1) Download Digital Coupons
Download digital coupons for your favorite food items from the grocery store where you shop frequently. Digital coupons are conveniently stored on your cell phone and are easy to access when you need them. However, don’t be tempted to buy food items just because you have a coupon.
2) Buy in Bulk
It might be well worth your while to purchase food items with a long shelf life in bulk. You can typically find better prices per unit on canned goods, cereal, bagged rice, and lots of other food staples when shopping at a membership-only warehouse store.
3) Take Advantage of Sales
Browse the weekly ads for several grocery stores in your locale. If the sales at different stores offer you significant savings on the food items you enjoy, take advantage of the discounts when they’re available.
4) Make Your Beverages
Instead of purchasing pricey containers of your favorite beverages, save yourself some money by making your own. For example, brew your iced tea and coffee to rack up the savings. Also, stir up a pitcher of refreshing lemonade, orange juice, or limeade to save even more dollars.
5) Cook in Quantity
Get in the habit of cooking enough food for two or more dinners when preparing an evening meal. You can eat your home-cooked dinner and freeze the extra helpings for another time. Cooking in quantity can help stretch your food dollars while freeing up more time for yourself.
6) Use Budget-Friendly Ingredients
You can’t stretch your grocery budget if you’re preparing meals with pricey ingredients. Choose simple recipes that only include a few budget-friendly food items. For example, incorporate hearty dishes that are made with low-cost pasta, potatoes, rice, beans, or eggs.
7) Eliminate Food Waste
Throwing out piles of uneaten food on your family’s plates shrinks your grocery budget. Eliminate food waste by serving yourself and your kids some smaller helpings to ensure there’s no food thrown out in the trash. Everyone can always go back for seconds if they’re still hungry.
8) Grow Your Own
Stretch your existing grocery budget significantly by growing some of your food. Create a garden area in your yard and plant your favorite vegetables. You’ll have the satisfaction of watching your garden grow and enjoying its delicious rewards while saving yourself some cash.
9) Try Store Brands
If you’re used to buying expensive name-brand foods, step out of your comfort zone and try more economical store brands. For example, switch out your pricey oatmeal, peanut butter, cereal, condiments, soda, and other foods for budget-friendly store brands and compare the taste.
10) Support Local Farmers
You can simultaneously save money on your grocery bill and help your community by purchasing fresh produce locally. Many towns and cities have a weekly farmer’s market where you can buy homegrown vegetables and fruits directly from local producers.
11) Cut Back on Meat
Because meat is one of your most expensive food items, you can stretch your grocery dollars by cutting back on it in your recipes. One way to do this is to add more budget-friendly vegetables and less meat to your soups, stews, casseroles, and pasta dishes.
12) Reinvent Leftovers
When your family isn’t thrilled to eat the remaining food from last night’s dinner, disguise those leftovers by creating a brand-new dish. For example, transform last night’s hamburgers into tonight’s taco casserole. Or stir up some homemade chicken soup with leftover chicken.
13) Make It Yourself
Avoid buying overpriced frozen meals that are often loaded with sodium and preservatives. As a substitute, prepare budget-friendly lasagna, chicken pot pie, spaghetti with meatballs, spinach quiche, or a variety of casserole dishes. You’ll eat healthier and save money at the same time by preparing the food yourself.
Even though it takes a little time and effort to shop the sales, download digital coupons, and buy food in volume, your monetary savings are worth it. In addition, using a budgeting app can help amplify your savings even more. Your bank account will be higher in no time!