15+ Grocery Shopping Hacks That Will Save You Time And Money
We’re only a family of three, and our grocery bill every month is still astronomical. I can only imagine how much money big families spend on food each month! Thankfully, there are lots of great grocery shopping hacks out there that will save you both time and money. Here they are!
1. Identify Staples
There are likely a few staples you buy each and every week. Make a list of what these staples are and look for deals accordingly. Some common examples of weekly staples include bread, milk, eggs, lettuce, and chicken.
2. Meal Plan
I cannot stress enough the importance of meal planning! By creating a weekly dinner menu, you’ll be able to eliminate food waste, prevent last-minute fast food runs, and focus on buying exactly what you need.
3. Put Your Blinders On
The closer you get to the checkout lanes at the grocery store, the more random yet persuasive items you’ll see. Grocery stores plant things like gum, candy bars, and magazines near the checkout lanes on purpose – they want you to buy these unnecessary items! Don’t even look at those rows upon rows of stuff. You don’t need it.
4. Don’t Grocery Shop While Hungry
We’ve all been there. You haven’t had a chance to eat something, and you find yourself grocery shopping while hungry. However, grocery shopping on an empty stomach will cause you to make impulse buys of unhealthy items or things you don’t really need.
5. Create A Budget
Especially if you have a big family, get in the habit of creating a weekly grocery budget. This will turn you into a more mindful shopper, and will save you lots of money in the long run.
6. Meat Alternatives
Meat tends to be among the priciest food items at a grocery store. If you’re looking to reduce your food bill, eat less meat! There are tons of protein alternatives to meat including lentils, beans, tofu, and quinoa.
7. Shop Seasonal
We all know how expensive certain fruits and veggies can be when they’re out of season. For this reason, shop seasonal! Design your weekly meal plans around what types of produce are currently in season.
8. Discount Sections
Every grocery store will have a discount section of seriously marked-down items. Chances are, you’ll be able to score some great deals on bread, toiletries, and canned food items with small dents in them.
9. Shop Around
Many people stick to one grocery store out of habit. However, you may find that other grocery stores offer better deals on certain items. While one store may be great for meat, another store may be much better for non-perishable items.
10. Wholesale Memberships
If you have a large family, a wholesale membership like Costco or Sam’s Club is super beneficial. Buying food in bulk is the way to go – plus, the quality is generally excellent.
11. DIY Produce Prep
Many people will buy pre-cut veggies and fruit out of convenience. However, these pre-cut items are generally way costlier than whole veggies and fruit. Buy them whole, chop them up yourself, and save money!
12. Reusable Bags
Many grocery stores will charge you for using their plastic bags. Get in the habit of bringing your own reusable shopping bags. Not only will it save you money, but it’s also way better for the environment.
13. Loyalty Cards
Most grocery stores offer loyalty programs. You can scan a card each time you shop, and you’ll receive a certain number of points. You can then redeem those points for money towards a future grocery bill.
14. Freeze, Freeze, Freeze!
If you realize you’re not going to be able to eat something before it goes bad, freeze it! You can freeze the majority of meat, produce, and bread products to save you money and prevent food waste.
The majority of grocery stores have coupon apps that you can download to your smartphone. Simply present your phone at the checkout and they’ll scan any relevant coupons for you.
Many people don’t realize how much money they spend on alcohol each month. Take a few minutes and go through your receipts or bank account statements. If you notice you’re spending an extremely large amount of money on booze each month, it might be time to cut back.