Friday, October 2, 2009

How Can I Cut My Grocery Budget?


Over the past year, I have cut our grocery budget from $400/month to just $200 per month for 2 adults, a baby, and a dog.  How did I do that?  MANY different ways!  Here are some ideas that may help you!
  1. Menu planning - Each week, I plan out our meals for that week.  I also formulate a basic idea of what we could have the next week as well.  I use a list of our favorite meals to help keep things fresh.  I generally try to plan half of the meals for items we currently have on hand and half that would need to be purchased.
  2. Couponing - I have learned to use coupons well.  As I make my shopping list for the week, I use the Kroger ad plus my coupons to maximize savings by matching coupons with sale items.  When I find a great deal on something, I buy a couple extra (I have about $20 built into the budget for these extra purchases) to keep in my stockpile.  I combine electronic coupons from pgesaver, cellfire, and shortcuts with paper coupons for greater savings.
  3. Drug Store/Supercenter shopping - I don't limit my grocery and household shopping to the grocery store.  I have been able to build a stockpile of toothpase, for example, of 7 tubes that I paid a total of $1.50 for all seven at various other stores.  These are GOOD toothpastes like Crest EnamelCare.  You can learn the basics of finding good deals at other stores with these links:  Target shopping, Rite Aid shopping, CVS Shopping part 1 and part 2.
  4. Eating Out - We eat out a lot less.  With a menu plan, we are tempted much less to go out and grab something quick.  I just need to look at my list and get a meal going without wondering what to cook.  
  5. Meals in Reserve - I keep several easy meals in reserve for those days we just don't feel like eating what was planned such as Chef Boyardee, soups, and box meals.  Sometimes I will get ambitious and cook and freeze a meal ahead.
  6. Build a stockpile - By slowly building a stockpile of items I have found at great prices, I have been able to eat from the pantry more and buy from the store less.   By keeping myself out of Kroger, I have spent a lot less!
  7. Be Honest - I had to be honest about what we will eat.  In the past, I would hoard food - even food we wouldn't eat.  I also would buy lots of expensive steaks (especially when we lived in Nebraska - they were just so darn good!) to treat ourselves.  I had to re-evaluate what meals would be treats.
Come back next week for more ideas to cut your grocery budget!  Go on over to Life As Mom for lots of frugal tips!

2 comments:

Lisa P@www.isitmondayalready.com said...

ya know Im at about 300 per month on 2 adults 2 children one in diapers, 2 cats two gods and a gin pig. Its so great to be able to do it for so little I get sick when I hear of people spending 500.00 + and they have less mouths to feed then me!

~Sara said...

These are all great tips.

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