- Personal Finance
Saving the Most Money on Groceries
Thanks Amazon for the photo!
There are many ways to save money at the grocery store. In fact it would be really hard to not save money these days. Stores want your business and they try to entice you to not only enter their store, but to spend the most money there as well. Here are some of the best ways I have found to save money at the grocery store.
- Grocery sales fliers come out every week in the paper and online. It is very easy to glance through them and plan your shopping list. A good way to keep your grocery bill low is to plan your menu for the week based on the sales ads. If chicken is on sale, plan your meals around chicken for the week. That does not mean you have to eat chicken every night of the week, though it should be on the menu. The same goes for other parts of your menu. Eat the fruits and vegetables that are on sale that week. If salads are on sale, have that as a side dish a couple of nights. If potatoes are on sale, have potatoes with a couple of meals, or as a meal itself. If bananas are the cheapest, then that is the fruit for your lunches this week.
- Using coupons to save money is a great idea. This can get confusing though as sometimes the product you have a coupon for is still more expensive than other products. Make sure you pay attention to avoid this. By pairing up the coupon with a product that is on a great sale, you can save the most money. If you have a store in your area that doubles or triples coupons, definitely try to use your coupons there, when the item is on sale of course. Most importantly, don't purchase a product that you aren't going to use just because you have a coupon.
- The best way I have found to save the most money though, is to shop to fill my pantry. This is a combination of #1 and #2. This means that when I shop I am not buying the exact items I need to create my weekly menu. I am purchasing what is on the greatest sale and if I have a coupon for that item, then even better. Over time shopping this way allows you to fill your pantry and freezer with foods bought at the lowest prices to be used over a long period of time.
- Track the sale prices of the items you buy most frequently. Cheese is on sale at my local grocery store every week. Sometimes I can get 8 oz blocks for $2, sometimes the sale is $2.50. Sometimes a 16 oz block of cheese is $6 "on sale" and sometimes it is $4.50. By keeping track of the lowest prices on cheese I can stock up when it is $2 per 8 oz block because I know that the other sale prices are not the best sale this store offers.
- Think outside the grocery store box. Last night I got 3 boxes of cereal at CVS for just $1.66 per box. This is much cheaper than my grocery store sells cereal for. CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid and Drug Mart all carry many food items that are frequently cheaper than the grocery store.
- Warehouse stores can offer great prices on food too. Be careful though, many of their items are NOT cheaper than a grocery store. Even bought in bulk, it doesn't automatically save you money. Pay attention to the prices and figure out the items you buy that are cheapest at a warehouse store and only buy them there.
Grocery shopping can be fun when you know you are getting great deals and you know that you are getting the most for your money. I personally do not enjoy shopping when I think I am being overcharged for items. If you are paying full price for things, you are most likely being overcharged. Everything goes on sale at some point and if at all possible you should wait for the sales. These grocery shopping ideas are easy to incorporate and will allow you to save the most money on your groceries.