We have discussed how to stay on a budget for clothing but we haven’t discussed on a budget for a necessity….Groceries!
That’s a tough one, to eat healthy, fresh, easy, fast, family friendly foods without spending a TON! I feed a family of anywhere from 4-6, my daughter and her fiance eat over here approximately once a week, sometimes more, I have a 16 year old son who cannot seem to stop eating and a 7 year old daughter who is CONSTANTLY grazing. I don’t mind her grazing-but I want to ensure she is grazing on things that are good for her. And all this adds up in a big HURRY! My husband and I are serious about our weight loss and everyone knows that is not cheap either. So how do I stay on budget for groceries?
Please keep in mind that my $125-$150 weekly budget works for me, different parts of the country experience different prices, these are just suggestions to help you determine a budget that works for you!
- SALES! Check all ads for the store(s) that you frequently shop. I shop 90% at one place for all my groceries-so that’s a fairly easy and fast step for me.
- Plan a menu. I sit down and plan out my menu for the week/month based on the ads that I have gone through and along with what I have in my pantry.
- I shop for groceries online-Hy-Vee has a really great online shopping option and keeps me from buying impulse items. Their shopping site also pulls any manufacture coupons available and attaches them to your bill-which is one less step you have to do! I LOVE their gas rewards so I try to take those into consideration when making my list. Who doesn’t want to save gas $$?! They also have the option for instructions on each item that you purchase and this is where I explain my expectations for my produce/meat. If you spend over $100 delivery(within a radius)/drive-up is FREE. I have heard that Wal-Mart is experimenting with stores on this option too, but I have yet to try it out…I don’t look for reasons to fix things that aren’t currently broken 🙂
- Plant a garden. Yes, I plant a rather large garden and can the heck out of things. Canning is expensive to get started but once you have an inventory of items built up it truly is a money saver. I like to watch for jars, lids, rings to go on clearance after canning season is over and stock up on supplies then. Not to mention you get to control what goes in to your food. We also freeze items as well.
- Buy in bulk. Buying in bulk can be expensive up front. When I started switching over to bulk, I bought just a few items at a time and added to that each week/month. Those things bought in bulk can also be frozen, or canned as well. I have done that with strawberries, meat, certain vegetables.
- Cook from scratch! and freeze meals ahead. I am sure you have all seen the different ways to cook ahead and freeze those meals to pop out on those days where you just don’t have time! Honestly-it costs A LOT of money to grab drive-thru for a family of 4-6(or any size for that matter)and freezing ahead has saved me a million times! And again, you get to control what goes into your food.
- If I have leftover money from my grocery budget, I spend it! I spend it on something that I can forsee needing in the next few weeks…sugar, flour, granola, cereal…things I know we will need and are on sale. It keeps me ahead of the game!
These are just a few things I do to help the grocery budget.
What is your budget for groceries? What are some of the things you do to help save and stay on track?
Love to All-Kim