16 Ways To Cut Your Grocery Bill In Half from money talk news
1. Buy discounted meat, poultry and fish What most of us do is create a menu, then go to the store and buy the ingredients. A better way might be to plan our menus around what’s on sale. One of my local grocery stores, Publix, puts different cuts and types of meats on sale every week. Grab what’s on sale. If it’s your favorite, stock up.
2. Eliminate soda and sugary drinks Not only is this good for your health, it’s good for your wallet. Last year, a Gallup poll showed that nearly half of Americans drink soda every day. Stick to water whenever possible; it’s nearly free. Need more variety? Buy powdered drink mixes or tea and make it yourself.
3. Opt for whole instead of cut produce A container of fruit salad at my grocery store can cost $5. But when I buy the fruits separately and slice them myself, the same money will pay for a week’s worth. Slicing fruit isn’t rocket science.
4. Try Meatless Monday Monday isn’t a requirement, but consider joining the Meatless Monday movement. Less meat can mean less fat, clearer arteries and lower expenses. If you can’t imagine a meal not centered on meat, look online for recipes. There are thousands upon thousands.
5. Buy only food Do you grab home essentials at the grocery store, where laundry detergent and deodorant cost more? You’re paying extra for convenience. Stores like Walmart and Walgreens have much better deals.
6. Make your own snacks Cheez-Its, Goldfish and all manner of snacks are a quick pick, but they add up when you check out. Pack lunches and after-school snacks with fresh fruit, carrots or homemade granola, and you’ll lower your calories and spending. Strung out on Goldfish? You can make them yourself.
7. Visit farmers markets Big-box grocers offer a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, but variety doesn’t translate to inexpensive. Visit your local farmers market, which may be less expensive, or go straight to the farm.
8. Buy generic From flour to salt to pasta, you can save 30 percent or more with store brands. This works for practically everything on your grocery list. But even if you hate generics, it’s hard to argue it’s worth paying more for these seven things.
9. Make more If you’re stocking up on meat and veggies, why not cook extra? Roast a chicken with veggies at the beginning of the week and use leftovers for chicken salad, tacos or a pasta dish. Stretch your meals.
10. Make essentials yourself When it comes to staples like bread, pasta sauce, soups and stock, save by making them yourself. There won’t be any mysterious or unpronounceable ingredients, and you can create the flavors you prefer.
11. Make lists — lots of them I use Wunderlist for my grocery list, and share it with other members of my household. They can add items when we run out, and it means I don’t have to be the pantry police. I build my list from my meal plan for the week, which is based on what’s on sale and what I already have on hand.
12. Shop more often This may sound counterintuitive, especially for busy families. But buying less more often can save money in the long run. I go grocery shopping two or three times a week rather than making one big trip every other week. I buy the freshest products, which are consumed before they go bad, reducing food waste.
13. Grow your own Whether it’s on your apartment patio or in your backyard, you can grow your own herbs, vegetables and possibly fruit. See how to start your own garden.
14. Clip coupons Look through weekly circulars, grab the Sunday newspaper, and look online for coupons. Stack manufacturer’s coupons with store sales. Ask if your store will price match.
15. Clean out your kitchen Take inventory so you can see what you need and what you have on hand to work with. This is especially important for your refrigerator, where items can get lost in the back or leftovers can be forgotten.
16. Don’t waste money on organic Some shoppers swear by organic and others think it’s unnecessary. But there are two things we can all agree on: It normally costs more, and there are some items for which the potential benefit is minimal. For example, fruits with protective skins we don’t eat, like bananas and avocados, are much less likely to be affected by pesticides.