Saving at the Grocery Store
It is important to shop wisely. I have been saving money on groceries for years. These days it is more important than ever to spend wisely at the grocery store because of the rising cost of food. On average, I save about 50 percent at the grocery store. However, shopping wisely doesn’t mean that you need to buy the cheapest thing and give up quality and taste. Buy what you need and don’t spend time buying things you wouldn’t normally use just because they are on sale. The following tips can help you stay within your budget and at the same time lead a healthier life.
- By not spending, you save. Don’t buy junk food. Soda is fine once and awhile but water and fruit juices would be better. It’s healthier and cost less money. Cut down on candy and fruit snacks even if they are on sale. Opt for fresh fruit and carrots and celery instead. These healthy snacks cost less money and are healthier for you.
- Look for better, healthier alternatives. Buy name brand cereal. You may be able to find store brand cereal for less, but many of them get soggy more quickly. It won’t be eaten and this leads to waste. There are usually cents off coupons available for all kinds of name brand cereal.
- Try using less of a better quality product. Buy leaner cuts of meat and cut it by half the amount to use in your recipes. Another alternative is to eat good cuts of meat occasionally and eat more beans. Beans can improve your health and protect you, so why don’t we eat them more often? They are less expensive and better for you.
- Make it yourself. Make your own 100% whole wheat bread without any preservatives for a fraction of the cost of the same bread in the store even if it is on sale. Homemade tortillas, muffins and bagels cost substantially less to make yourself and the taste is so much better. Making your own stew with fresh vegetables costs less than the equivalent of canned stew on sale and you don’t have the preservatives.
- Use what you have. Unless you are celebrating a special occasion, use the food you have before running to the store. If you don’t have exactly what you need, substitute something else in its place. If you don’t have an acceptable substitute, make a different meal from what you have on hand. You will save yourself time and gas by avoiding a last minute trip to the grocery store. Limit your trips to the grocery store to once a week or twice a month.
- Make a menu and grocery list before shopping. It is easier to avoid unnecessary purchases when you have an idea of what you want to buy before you enter the grocery store. This will also help to avoid last minute trips for forgotten items. Set a budget for food each month and/or week. Use any leftover money to buy staples and things you regularly use when they go on sale.
- Clip coupons. Cut out "cents off" manufacturers coupons from the newspaper, magazines, and Sunday flyers. Sometimes you can extra flyers from the recycle bin for those items you need multiples of. Cut out store coupons from sales flyers. Match up your coupons with store sales to maximize your savings. Use the internet to print off coupons such as Smart Source: http://coupons.smartsource.com//index.aspx?Link=5S2ZUA6PWPEPO
- Buy things your family will eat. If you buy the cheap brand of something on sale, chances are your family will not eat it. They can taste the difference. It will just sit on the shelf. If your family doesn’t like something, why buy it even if it is on sale? Enjoy the food you make and don’t feel obligated to make a meal that doesn’t taste good just to save a dollar.
Grocery shopping doesn’t need to be a burden. Just because something is on sale and a good price doesn’t mean that it is the best choice in the long run. Be wise about your spending and realize that by not spending, you save. Collect receipts and figure out just how much you are really saving on your grocery shopping. You’ll find out that it was well worth your organization.