… and still eat well! Whether you are feeding a small family, or have a home full of growing teenagers, groceries are one of the biggest weekly expenses in most households.
Spending less at the supermarket doesn’t have to mean compromising on quality. It is possible to cut your grocery budget while still ensuring your family eats healthy, nutritious, high quality foods.
Here are ten tips on how to save on groceries and still eat well.
Shop less often
Every time you walk into the supermarket it costs money. You might only plan to pop in for some bananas and milk, but more often than not you’ll walk out with a basket of other random bits and pieces.
Set a regular shopping day and stick to it. Doing one big shop fortnightly and a small top up of fresh produce, milk and bread once a week is a good approach. You can also freeze bread and it will stay as fresh as it was when you put it into the freezer, avoiding the need to pop back to the shops.
Eat before you shop
Grocery shopping on an empty stomach is doomed from the start. You’ll buy things you don’t need and are more likely to make poor choices when it comes to healthy foods. Make sure you have something to eat before you shop and bring snacks for the kids.
Stick to a list
Never shop without a list, and make sure you stick to it! Before you put something in your trolley that isn’t on the list, think about whether you truly need it. Don’t just buy something because it is on special.
Meal planning saves you time and money, plus it prevents waste. If you don’t meal plan before your weekly shop then you need to start. If you need some inspiration on meal plans and recipes, check out these meal planning ideas. (http://keepcalmgetorganised.com.au/meal-planning/).
Check the unit price
When you are comparing prices of different brands or products, don’t just look at the overall price. Make sure you check the unit price to get an accurate idea of the value. Brands are smart when it comes to marketing and packaging. Just because something has the lowest overall price, doesn’t mean it is the best value.
Buy home brands for basics
If you usually stick to the same known brands for all your products, try testing out some home brands for basics like flour, sugar, pasta and eggs. Buying home brands is a great alternative when you are trying to cut back on your grocery budget.
Cut back on meat
Too much meat is not only less than ideal for your overall health, but it tends to be more expensive. Try planning a meatless Monday each week and bulking out your regular meals with vegetables, beans and grains, rather than cooking with more meat.
Use a slow cooker
Cooking foods in a slow cooker is a great way to cut back on grocery costs as you can choose cheaper cuts of meat and still produce delicious meals. Slow cooker meals tend to work best with the cheapest cuts of meat you can find! Go for chunk steaks and chicken thighs rather than eye fillets and chicken tenderloins.
Cook in bulk
Foods tend to be cheaper in bulk. If you have regular meals that are suitable for freezing, it can make sense both financially and for convenience, to cook in bulk. Make sure you label everything well and plan out what you are intending to cook so food doesn’t go to waste.
Buy in season fruit and vegetables
In season fruits and vegetables taste better, contain more nutrients and are cheaper. Plan your meals around fruits and vegetables that are in season and you’ll cut your grocery budget significantly. This is a great guide on in season fruits and vegetables.
About the author: Michelle is the voice behind the popular blog Keep Calm Get Organised. She’s passionate about helping people organise their home, families and finances for life. Her blog shares tips, hints and ideas on everything from budgeting and saving, to decluttering, home organisation and meal planning.
Readers love her honest and achievable approach to decluttering, budgeting and organisation, with thousands joining in on the regular monthly challenges. She has two eBooks on decluttering and speed cleaning, as well as an online course on home budgeting. If you need inspiration and ideas to get organised, budget better or declutter your home, check out the blog today. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.