Whether you are new to weekly or monthly grocery shopping or have done it for so long you’re basically a professional, grocery shopping gets very expensive if it isn’t thoroughly planned out. Start enjoying shopping and feel good knowing you’ve done your best to save money with these tips for saving money on your grocery bill.
Are you shopping at the store with the best prices? Try out a few different stores, and then compare receipts. In general, if one seems to always be a bit cheaper, you should frequent it more often than the others. Some avid savers shop a few different stores for the best deals. This works great as well, but isn’t always feasible for everyone’s schedules.
Organize and Make Room
The first step in planning is to clean out the refrigerator and pantry. These two areas get out of control, especially when kids who eat snacks are involved.
Before shopping, throw out all those leftovers that are growing science experiments in the refrigerator, wipe off shelves, and reorganize whatever’s left.
The pantry often gets even worse than the refrigerator as chips and cookies accumulate; for this reason, you should do a full overhaul of your pantry to make room for incoming groceries and to ensure it stays clean and organized. When you keep the pantry well organized all the time, it helps in preventing us from buying products we don’t need. When the ketchup is hidden on the bottom shelf, you’re probably going to buy more ketchup.
Menu Planning and a List
Menu planning is often overlooked but also an essential method of saving on the grocery bill. Now that your pantry and refrigerator are clean and organized, begin by building a menu off of what you have immediately available.
Use your weekly calendar to help you with meal planning. You don’t want to plan an elaborate meal on the day you’ll be working until 7 in the evening. Plan for a week or a month, depending on how long you intend to stock up for.
Using the menu, plan your grocery list. You should make the list within a close distance of the refrigerator and pantry. If you aren’t sure if you have an ingredient you need, you can easily check for it in your newly organized areas.
Planning ahead in this way is one of the most essential tips for saving money on your grocery bill. Without a plan, you’ll buy too much convenience food and way more groceries than you need.
After your exciting grocery excursion, double up meals when you can. If making a lasagna, make two and freeze one. When making soups or chili, do the same, and you’ll have meals in the freezer for those days you couldn’t squeeze the grocery shopping in. This is not only a time-saver but also a money-saver.
On a side note, when freezing soups, sauces, or chili, lay them flat in the freezer in large freezer-safe ziplock bags. Once frozen, they can stand vertically, saving a ton of freezer space.
Using these tips for saving money on your grocery bill will actually make grocery shopping more enjoyable when you know you’ve done it really well. Spend your extra money at the ice cream shop this summer—not at the grocery store.