The Ultimate Guide On Saving On Groceries
total spent on groceries: $169.43
savings on all groceries: $80.20
estimated percentage saved: 32%
Not shown in the picture: unhealthy snacks
How is it possible that the world we live in expects us to pay more than our rent or mortgage, just to live a healthy lifestyle?
I ask myself this every single day. I highly value living as healthy of a lifestyle as possible, but I also value living on a budget.
I wanted to share my biggest tips on how we feed 3 grown adults (1 of which is pregnant, and the other 2 are hard working men!), and 2 children who eat as if they’re teenagers!
If possible, always shop in the mornings.
I notice that shopping in the mornings:
You are less crowded
You are able to think clearer (notice which items are cheaper than others; stick to your budget; and follow your list!)
Fresh product stocking happens either during the night shift from 11pm-7 am, or right in the morning!
Bonus: all the cashiers are super cheery!
Take advantage of manager mark down items.
If you don’t know what a manager mark down item, it is any produce or item that has a certain discount tag because of the following reasons:
expires relatively soon
too much product ordered
I used to be absolutely grossed out by the idea of purchasing discounted food items.
Hear me out!
What would the difference be if I purchased meat two days prior to shopping trip, and left it in my fridge, vs. purchasing the meat that has a 30% manager mark down that expires on the same date?
Trick question: nothing!
I stock up my freezer at all times and take advantage of every single deal! I have yet to notice a quality difference.
I know berries go bad extremely fast. But I have noticed, unfortunately, there is no difference in the quality of full price berries vs. 30% off berries.
When I purchase the 30% off berries, I go through and toss the ones that are too far gone to salvage; I thoroughly wash the rest in a vinegar and baking soda bath; and freeze the ones that are too squishy to eat, but are still okay to eat!
I chop up the rest and keep them in an air tight container. They typically last for up to 5 whole days before I end up freezing the extra, if the kids haven’t eaten them all by then!
Banana’s that are 30%-50% off are absolutely perfect for baking! I love making “nice cream” which is just healthy ice cream using bananas! I also use them for banana bread, or banana carrot muffins!
Why would you pay full price for an item that you gobble up within a week if you could just get it on discount if possible?
Don’t be afraid to use coupons!
I have that old lady soul that ready the newsletter at the door that tells me which items are on discount.
In Canada at the moment, blueberries were $6 for a container. Simply by reading the newsletter with coupons, I saved $4 per container of blueberries that you see on the picture above!
I save at least $20-$40 per shopping trip by looking at the coupons and sales newsletter. It truly pays to stop for 3 whole minutes and pay attention.
Learn how to break down cost per gram!
This is the equation: Take the price, divide by grams, and you will get a cost per 100g!
Ex: There are 2 bags of chocolate chips.
#1 is $17 for a 400g bag;
#2 is $20 for a 600g bag.
#1 is $.0425/g
#2 is $0.333/g
Financially, it is smarter to go for the bigger bag of chocolate chips, even though it is more expensive, but you are getting more bang for your buck!
Note: I do invest in the more expensive item when there is a significant difference in the pricing and it is an item I use often. It is worth the money in the long run.
No Name products are not the devil!
There are definitely items that I cannot let go of and go No Name. Things like natural cleaners, diapers, toilet paper, natural cooking items, some spices (gluten issues!), and coffee to name a few!
However, as you can tell by the picture above there is: salad dressing, pasta sauces, orange juice, and broccoli in the No Name brand! Obviously, most fruit, veggies, and produce don’t have a No Name brand that I have found! There are some shelf items that have no difference to the name brand, except for price!
You will discover along your budgeting journey which items you cannot part with!
Always keep a budget, but remember your health is meant to be invested in!
I stick to a budget under $200 a week for everything grocery related- food, diapers, baby wipes, toilet paper, cleaning supplies, and health supplements.
I understand there are times that you will surpass your budget during certain seasons where veggies or fruit are more expensive. This is why I say be mindful, and realistic.
Although it would be financially smart to live off of Ramen noodles for every meal, it is absolutely not smart when thinking about your overall health!
We try our absolutely hardest to eat 80% clean.
We feel better mentally, physically, and emotionally when we eat healthy
There is less tantrums between the kids (and myself!)
Our sleep improves immensely
Our digestion is better
We are rarely sick
Shop in season + utilize farmers markets!
Foods drastically change pricing as the seasons ebb and flow.
We try our hardest to utilize farmers markets, as they are as organic as it gets, and generally cheaper than the store! Of course, I suggest gardening, but it isn’t always a reality for everyone.
Here is a resource for food in seasons: http://www.foodsinseason.com
Meal prep to save food waste, have a clear money plan, and reduce stress.
As mentioned multiple times during this article, our health is extremely important in our family.
If you don’t take care of your wellness, you will be forced to treat your illness.
I wrote an article on 5 Meal Prep Tips for the Busy People. I wrote while I was in college full time, raising my babies, blogging, and freelance writing!
I have noticed a significant reduction in our food and money waste from having a clear meal plan!