There’s always a way to save if you look hard enough, but it can feel like you’ve run out of options when it comes to food costs. No matter how many coupons you clip and pennies you pinch, the cost of food is one of the biggest in any household’s budget. If you or a family member has special dietary needs, that price can go even higher. Eating healthy without going broke isn’t always easy, but there are a few ways you can save more each month. Follow these tips to save more on groceries while still enjoying your favorite foods.
Buy The Right Items in Bulk
Sometimes you’ll come across the tip to buy in bulk as a simple way to save, but this is not always the case. If you bought everything in bulk, you could wind up with a higher bill and more food than you even need. Focus on food items and household products that tend to be purchased most often such as dish soap, laundry detergent, toilet paper and the like are all good examples. You can also cut back on non-essentials like snacks if you purchase a bundle instead of individual packages. A subscription snack box allows you to discover new tastes and save on groceries; each month, you receive a new selection of snacks from around the world to sample and savor.
Build Pantry Meals
Pantry meals are meals that you make based on what you already have at home. For example, if there is a bag of rice, you can buy some vegetables to steam or serve it with some chili mix and a can of beans. This method not only gives you a better idea of what to buy but also prevents unnecessary food waste. Remember, wasted food is also wasted money no matter how long ago you spent it.
Don’t Shop on an Empty Stomach
While there isn’t any empirical evidence that supports the idea you’ll buy more when you’re hungry, on a more practical level, you’re likely to walk into the store and grab whatever looks good now rather than stick to a specific meal plan. Even if you are practiced in a lifestyle like intermittent fasting and are used to having an empty stomach you are still vulnerable to over buying. So, make sure you eat something and have plenty of time to shop before you head to your local supermarket.
Compare Your Stores
Not all stores are made equal even if they sell the same products. Make sure you check out two or three grocery stores near you and determine which ones have the best prices. You might also find that one offers far more affordable fresh produce while another is better for purchasing boxed goods. You can balance your budget by choosing the right store for certain products and shopping according to their weekly deals.
Start Buying Store Brands
Generic food brands are often like generic prescription medications. Other than the name, they have no significant differences. You save money by going generic when you buy the store’s signature brand of cereal instead of a more expensive and well-known name. Take the time to find the alternatives to all your most common buys. You might be surprised at how much a few dollars saved on several items adds up.