Grocery shopping is an important part of survival. We need to find foods that provide nutrition and substance. Despite the necessity of eating, food isn’t cheap, especially not healthy options. The savvy saver might know a few tricks to save on groceries, but they might have missed a few of them.
To help save you more on groceries, here are a few tips and tricks:
Shop to Eat, Not to Make a Meal
Plan your meals throughout the week, not before going shopping. Aim to only buy foods that you need and use often, not specialty items that you use just to make one meal. Specialty items tend to get wasted, or you overspend on one meal. Cook meals based on the ingredients that you already own.
Make a Shopping List
Spur of the moment shopping leads to overspending because you grab items based on your mood. Use the list to help you go into a grocery store with a plan. You get only what you need, and you don’t stay there too long, which can lead to making more rash food decisions.
Don’t Shop Hungry
Shopping while hungry leads to listening to your gut more than your brain: you shop based on cravings. You’re less likely to buy a box of cookies when you just had a full meal than when you haven’t eaten for six hours.
Buy Store Brands
Store brand foods cost a significantly amount less than their brand named counter parts. However, they taste very similar. Stock up on store brand items, especially boxed items like cereals.
Buy in Bulk
Only buy items in bulk that you plan to eat often. Buying everything in bulk leads to waste due to the food expiring. Consider shopping at an online retailer for foods sold in mass quantities.
Jet.com and Amazon.com are a few trustworthy stores for buying in bulk . Use an online store to save on yearly memberships. You save at least $50 a year by not signing up for a warehouse club. Jet and Amazon are also known to have cheaper items than the ones sold in those clubs.
Skip the Deli
Deli foods have a slightly more nutritious value than packaged meats, but they taste fairly similar. Additionally, packaged meats are often a few to several dollars cheaper than meat straight from the deli.
Save a few dollars each trip by not buying herbs. Instead, buy a pot and herb seeds, and then start growing your own. You end up saving money and always having fresh herbs available.
Buy Fruits in Season
At the start of every season, check a produce seasonal chart to know what fruits and veggies to buy. You save money by buying based on season, and you can then freeze some to enjoy throughout the year.
Use Groupon to find the weekly coupons at your favorite chain grocery stores. Clip them and go shopping. Additionally, check the sales’ flyer of your local grocery stores for the weekly savings.
Order Online for Specialty Items
Buy certain bulk or specialty items online to apply a discount. Specialty items may include rare meats, spices, or customized foods. Customized foods cost less if you use the retailer’s website to order the item.
For example, if you want to buy your husband a box of personalized M&Ms for his birthday, it is better to order from the M&M site and apply a coupon than to shop for it at a specialty candy store, because you have more savings options and can customize the M&Ms more.
Limit Your Shopping
Only shop for groceries once or twice a month. Less shopping leads to less overspending and more careful buying decisions. You are also more likely to use everything, instead of letting food spoil.