Save Money: Groceries

Bag of groceriesThe long list of ways to save money with groceries and food.

Groceries

Shop once a week. The more trips you make to the store, the likelier you are to buy on impulse because you see more tempting items. About two-thirds of purchases are unplanned; cut that in half to save $143 a month (if you spend $100 a week on groceries).

Always make a grocery list before going to the store. This helps reduce impulse buying and you won't forget anything.

Check the ads. Buy what is in season and on sale. Plan your meals around these.

Stop drinking bottled water and instead buy a filter for your faucet (about $34, plus $25 for replacements). If your family consumes 12 gallons a month, you'll save about $15.

If your water tastes bad even with a filter consider installing a reverse osmosis filter.

Eat what's in season. Out-of-season produce costs 20% to 50% more than it does when it's in season.

Differentiate between clean and dirty. Organic produce costs $1 to $2 more than the conventional kind. Cut your pesticide intake by going organic on the dirtiest produce (apples, lettuce) and conventional on the cleanest (kiwi, tomatoes). For a list of clean and dirty fruits and veggies, go to foodnews.org.

Try generic brands. Some generic brands taste and work well, some do not. You can save quite a bit of money going generic but do not do it blindly. Also, make sure the store brands are cheaper...sometimes they are not! One place I would not skimp is generic tomatoes. Being a cook, there is a big difference in taste.

Watch the expiration dates on perishable goods. Usually items with later expiration dates are in the back. No point getting a gallon of milk if it is going to turn sour with a couple of days. Same goes for meat, eggs, yogurt, spreads, frozen items, deli/bakery items etc. Some items will last past their expiration dates.

Go grocery shopping while you are in a hurry. Try to squeeze in the grocery trip when time is of the essence. Armed with your grocery list, you should be in-and-out very quickly with little time for meandering and getting tempted to buy things you don’t need.

Buy in bulk whenever possible. When it comes to nonperishable items, buy in bulk whenever you find something on sale. Items like cereals, tinned goods, rice, beans, pasta, coke, toothpaste, body wash, shampoo, and toilet paper. For such items, shopping at warehouse stores can save you quite a bit of money, provided you stick strictly to your shopping list when you shop at these places.

Learn to cook at home. Once you get use to making good meals at home, you'll rarely go out. Delicious food is not hard to make. I post my recipes online at dougthecook.

Plan your meals. Figure out what you will make for the week and purchase accordingly.

Make your own frozen dinners. They will be much better than store-bought ones.

Eat leftovers. One person I read called it C.O.R.N. - clean out refrigerator night. Many meals actually taste better the next day.

Take your lunch to work.

Grocery coupons

Clipping and printing coupons can save a lot of money. We do not use warehouse stores because many times using coupons gives as good as or a better deal.

Save Money. Print Free Coupons Anytime.

CouponMom.com

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