7 Ways To Save On Groceries Without Using Coupons
1. Take inventory.
Take inventory of what you already have at home. Often times we start writing up a grocery list without checking what we have first. If you see that you have spaghetti sauce, simply add pasta to your list for an easy meal. Just make sure you figure out what you already have and build your meals around it. My mentor, Dani Johnson, suggests that you empty your entire pantry before going to the grocery store. It's a sure way to clean out your pantry and eat the food that might soon go bad!
2. Make a meal plan.
This is a must if you want to save money on groceries. Make sure you take the time to write up a meal plan based on your current inventory and store sales. Once you know what you’ll be making throughout the week, you can easily create your shopping list. I know that anytime I make a “quick” stop at the grocery store without a list, I wind up spending way more than I wanted to. So planning is key if you want to see significant savings.
3. Use the same ingredients for different meals.
When I create my meal plan, I make sure that I plan meals that use the same ingredients to maximize my savings. For example; if I buy a large pack of chicken breasts, I’ll use it to make chicken quesadillas, rice with chicken and chicken alfredo. This also helps me save time since I’ll precook all of the chicken and freeze it to have it readily available for meals.
4. Eat meatless meals.
We all know how expensive meats can be even when purchased on sale. One way I reduce my grocery bill is by planning meals that don’t require any meat. Here are some examples of meatless meals: baked mac n cheese, vegetarian chili, broccoli cheddar soup, quesadillas and my favorite, breakfast for dinner. Get creative and include a meal or two that doesn’t require any meat to help keep your grocery costs down.
5. Stop being a brand snob.
I’m a huge Costco fan. Is not the only place I buy my groceries, but I do purchase a lot of my food items there. When I have mentioned this to others, I hear that they could never shop there because they don’t carry “XYZ” brand. I agree that cheaper is not always better. However, sticking to one particular brand is not going to help you save any money. I purchase my items based on what’s on sale for the week or I stick with store brands since they tend to be the cheapest.
6. Stock up.
If I find that an item we frequently use is on sale for a great price, I stock up. I know I’ll be using it eventually, so I’ll spend some extra money knowing that it will yield savings in the long run. Budget some of your grocery money for items that will be on sale so that you can purchase extra and stock up. Make sure you check out your local ads before you head to the grocery store to plan accordingly.
7. Know your grocery sale cycles.
Have you ever tried purchasing a ham in the summer? It’s probably going to cost you triple (or more) of what it would cost around Easter or Christmas time. Grocery stores have what’s called a sale cycle. Basically what this means is that certain items will go on sale during specific seasons or months of the year. This is a great way to know what to stock up on and when. Living Richly On A Budget has a great guide that you can print out for reference. Click here to check it out.