I’ve had lots of friends share with me lately that they really struggle to save money on food. And I keep hearing that they are frustrated that stores have done away with double and triple coupons. They don’t want to use coupons, but prices keep going up, and to top it off, kids keep growing…and the bigger they get, the more they eat. With all that happening, it may seems like a struggle to reduce your grocery bill, but it is possible. And it’s easier than you think!
Here are 6 ways to save money at the grocery store that don’t require you to clip coupons!
1) Buy less.
You may have heard that buying in bulk saves you money, but that is only if you are buying non-perishable items that you use often. Purchasing too much of one food usually guarantees that most of it will go into the trash. Only buy in bulk if you know you will use that ingredient within the expiration date or if you have room to freeze it all.
2) Make a grocery tracker or budget book.
Keep track of the groceries you buy often. Make a list of things like bread, butter, milk and all the other usual suspects, and write the prices down for each after your shopping trips. Buy doing this, you can see how the prices fluctuate from week to week, and you can also compare between grocery stores. Keeping a budget book is also a good way to match savings with coupons and flyers using the average cost of these items, to see if you are really getting a deal.
3) Buy meat wisely.
The meat department is where the bulk of your budget goes. Try making a few meatless meals to save money. If your family isn’t going to go for that idea, then buy cheaper cuts and make lots of stews and casseroles. Also, check out Zaycon! I buy chicken from Zaycon and it’s my favorite place to buy chicken for a reasonable price. You can sometimes get a good deal at the butcher shop for a side of beef, but keep in mind you need a big freezer for this purchase.
4) Do your own processing.
It costs more money to buy products that save you time. Sorry, but in order to save, you may have to put a little elbow grease into your meals. Buy your produce in tact and cut it up when you get home. Buy chickens whole and cut them up yourself. For a few weeks, use your budget book to keep track of the regular purchases, then buy your items whole and process them yourself. You will be quite surprised at the price difference.
5) Buy store brands.
There are times when buying a name brand product with a coupon will be cheaper, but there are also times that you’ll find that even with a coupon, you can’t get a name brand item for as little as you can get a store brand item. Compare the ingredients and you will see that there really isn’t that much of a difference between name brand and store brand. We do a lot of store brand items, but there are a few that I just don’t like as much as the regular brand. Try some different items and see how your family feels. If your family absolutely hates the store brand, you aren’t saving money if you have to throw the food away.
6) Always shop with a list.
Walking into the grocery store unprepared is a sure way to wind up with lots of food you have no use for, and not enough of anything to make a complete meal. Believe me…we’ve all had it happen to us.
There are numerous ways to save money at the grocery store. The six ways mentioned here are easy to implement and should show immediate savings.