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How do you save money at the grocery store?

Posted by on Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:38 PM
  • 15 Replies

5 Easy Ways to Save Money at the Grocery Store

grocery cartBottom line is: Food's expensive. Unless you're going to subsist on ramen noodles and 99-cent menu fare, you're going to have to drop some cash. One of the biggest expenses for my family each week is groceries (and, yes, take-out on weekends). Every time I look at the receipt, there's no denying it: It stings. We're trying to save money, and what with "having to eat" and all, it's damn near impossible.

My husband and I talk about how to try to cut our food expenses ad nauseum, but it never seems to work. But this weekend, we sat down and really tried to get to the bottom of things, and we actually figured out how to shave a little off our food bill without sacrificing quality. (I know, this is starting to sound like a commercial.) Seriously, though, our bill was $22 less than normal at the grocery store yesterday. No, not ground-breaking, but it was something. Here's what we came up with:

1. Don't buy produce pre-cut or pre-packaged. Not a new one here, I know, but how easy is it to just reach for the box of lettuce instead of the head? Yesterday, all produce was as produce-y as it gets: Carrots that had to be peeled; peppers that had to be chopped; and romaine that needed shredding. Random bonus: We did all our chopping and cutting while my daughter was taking a nap and had a lovely little chat. Much better than typing away on our computers or zoning out to the TV.

2. Rice, rice, rice. A little rice goes a long way. We bought a bag of rice last week, and we plan on having it as our "side" at least once a week until we run out. That's bang for your buck right there.

3. Use the pastas and grains and whatevers that are already in your cupboard. If you're anything like me, your cupboard is filled with half-empty boxes of pastas, rices, and weird grains that you thought you were definitely going to get into (but didn't -- womp womp). Use them. You probably have side dishes for weeks in there.

4. Breakfast for dinner. Eggs are cheap. And they come in twelves! Once a week, why not do omelets or sunny-side-ups and a side of turkey bacon?

5. Plan every meal. My husband and I always say we're going to do this, and we wind up doing it for, like, two weeks, then it's back to just randomly shopping for food items with no clear menu in mind. Yesterday, we did it. And we're hoping we'll do it again this weekend. Tonight's menu: Veggie fajitas with, you guessed it, a side of rice.

How do you save money at the grocery store?

by on Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:38 PM
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Replies (1-10):
KenzieQsMommy
by Heather on Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:41 PM
1 mom liked this
I *only* go into the aisles that have things we need in them
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JakeandEmmasMom
by Silver Member on Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:43 PM
Breakfast for dinner is a big money saver. I also: check unit prices for everything, refuse to buy things that cost more than I'm willing to spend on that item, stock up when prices are low, and stretch our meat using beans and bulger.
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johnny4ever
by Member on Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:43 PM

Couponing,buying bulk..meal planning!Coupon match ups

michiganmom116
by Rhonda on Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:53 PM

I hate eating "cheap foods" because many of those foods also lack a good nutritional load.  Gah. 

I plan meals based on nutritionally loaded foods and skip the empty fillers like bread and pasta and cereal.    I buy what I need to make those meals.  I know the prices of the items I need.  I cook from scratch...if the manufacturer can make sauces, salad dressings, and seasoning mixes, so can I...and for much less.  Good whole food with plenty of nutrition will fill us up better than those empty filler foods and I find that we eat less food.

IF we need snacks, I buy popcorn kernels for the kids to pop in the kettle, and we also make our own jerky.  Hard boiled eggs are another cheap snack, as are bananas and apples, carrots and celery and raisins.

nicole2884
by on Jan. 31, 2013 at 1:55 PM
Costco saves us $$
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12yrmama
by Member on Jan. 31, 2013 at 3:09 PM

We do vegeterian every other night. It's healthier and cheaper.

I also buy barley, rices, etc. at the whole food store in bulk. Hot grains (anykind) are good for breakfast and as a side for dinner.

For snacks we buy in bulk at Sam's Club or when on BOGO sale. Pretty standard stuff goldfish, cereal, and cheese/crackers.

rachel_2010
by Member on Jan. 31, 2013 at 4:32 PM



Quoting JakeandEmmasMom:

Breakfast for dinner is a big money saver. I also: check unit prices for everything, refuse to buy things that cost more than I'm willing to spend on that item, stock up when prices are low, and stretch our meat using beans and bulger.

Our grocery store has unit price right on the label, but I noticed that the medium block of cheese is less than the "bulk" block per unit.  They do that with some laundry soap too, I always double check!

Our "too broke for new food" meal is stir fried veges (whatever is left/in the freezer), brown rice, and green lentils.  It's filling and cheap, and we usually always have everything in the pantry to make it


KenzieQsMommy
by Heather on Jan. 31, 2013 at 4:59 PM
I also always stop by the managers specials in every dept. I've been able to stock up on some awesome stuff just because the company is changing the label or something equally benign
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babynurse454
by Member on Jan. 31, 2013 at 5:42 PM
I meal plan...,
Clip.coupons
Price Match
If I find a good buy on something I buy extra.
I shop at 3 different stores weekly.
It takes time but well worth it, .
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chrissysnow22
by on Jan. 31, 2013 at 6:04 PM
We do all this.

We cook from scratch

Coupon
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