Could you use a few strategies to cut your grocery bill down? Wouldn’t it be great if you could cut your grocery bill in half? Every day it seems like it’s getting more and more expensive to buy groceries, and we’re not imagining it. The cost of food is a big part of most household budgets and every year prices continue to rise.
Take a look at these statistics on the cost of food in America:
- According to The United States Department of Agriculture’s Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, the cost to feed a family of four in July of 2014 ranged from $568 to $1,293.20 a month.
- Data from the Consumer Price Index shows that food costs have increased an average of 2.8% per year since 1990, and are likely to continue to increase.
If you’re like me and constantly looking for ways to save money on groceries, you’ll appreciate a few tips on how to do just that. Here are some ways to save big on your next trip to the grocery store and dramatically lower your food bill.
- Stop paying for convenience. To get the biggest savings from your food budget, avoid pre-packaged foods or foods that have been pre-washed, pre-chopped, or pre-cooked.
- Look for whole foods that you can cook and prepare at home, rather than buying food that has been highly processed. Preparing and cooking whole foods at home is cheaper and gives you greater control over how much sugar, salt, and fat are added to your meals.
- Cooking at home saves money over eating out. Start by organizing your food pantry and freezer, to plan your meals. For inspiration search Pinterest for amazing recipes your family will enjoy.
- If you want to use the food that’s already in refrigerator, consider trying a website like My Fridge Food where you can check off ingredients you have on hand to find recipes. This is a great way to use food items before their expiration date and waste less food.
- Plan menus around weekly sale items. Prepare dinners with items that are already marked down or on sale at the supermarket.
- Many grocers offer specials on items in their meat and produce departments once or twice a month. Produce and farm markets offer discounts on fruits, and vegetables that in season, so take advantage of these deals.
- Read the sales circulars that get mailed to your house, then shop store sales early for the best selection so you don’t end up shut out with a rain-check.
- Most meats and produce can be safely stored in your freezer until you’re ready to use them. Stock up on these special deals and plan your meals around these sales items.
- Avoid limiting yourself to shopping at only one store for groceries and other household items. Look for specials, markdowns, and rewards programs at all stores in your area, including drug stores, department super-stores and dollar stores.
- A bigger store chain doesn’t necessarily mean bigger savings. For savings, include smaller, regional grocery stores, as well as local farmer’s markets on your list of places to shop.
- Save big with coupons and rewards clubs. Many stores offer special discounts to members of their loyalty and shopping clubs. Some even offer discounts at the gas pump, so take advantage of these savings as well.
- Sign up and remember to bring your membership card when you shop. Save even more by using coupons you find online.
- Many websites like coupons.com (which I offer right here on my site), provide coupons you can redeem for common grocery items. Other saving sites like Ibotta allow you save discounts to your Smartphone or to your retailer’s rewards card, so you don’t even have to clip or print coupons.
- Use coupons on items that are already on sale to get extra savings. Keep in mind that you aren’t really saving if you use a coupon on an item that you wouldn’t normally buy. So, only redeem coupons on the items that you know you will use.
Rising food prices can make it difficult to keep groceries affordable, but with these smart strategies to cut your grocery bill, you to afford healthy and delicious meals, while dramatically reducing your grocery spending.
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