13 Ways to Save Money on Groceries
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We have all lived paycheck to paycheck at one point in our lives. But we all don't have to live this way. By saving more, you can increase your financial stability and work toward breaking free from the paycheck-to-paycheck rat race. Most people fall for the myth that saving money has to be a drastic action, but the truth is that every little bit counts. I'm sure we all would like to save more money, and luckily there are plenty of ways to save on expenses today and in the future. Here are some effective ways to generate savings today and tomorrow. Enjoy!
1. Learn How to Cook with Fresh, Whole Foods
Ordering takeout is nice to do now and then, but it's essential to know how to cook if you want to save money while living paycheck to paycheck. With helpful websites and YouTube channels that share different recipes, you'll find some great tips, learn new cooking techniques, and be able to feed your family well for less.
2. Pack Your Lunch
After you cook your fantastic dinner at home, pack a lunch of leftovers for work instead of buying lunch to save money on costly daily lunches. Or, just plan out what foods you want to bring to lunch, then prepare and pack everything the night before. Get into a routine of bringing your lunch to work, and it will quickly become second nature.
3. Skip the Coffee Shops, Make Coffee at Home
If you love having some java in the morning to get your day going, make your coffee at home instead of picking it up from a gourmet coffee shop. While it seems like a minimal daily expense, coffee purchases add up quickly. You don't have to cut out barista runs completely, but you can easily limit them by investing in a decent coffee maker and brewing your lattes at home.
4. Take Advantage of Price-Checking Policies
Most grocery stores offer the option of price matching to save on groceries and goods. This is a great (and underutilized) way to save a lot of money at the cash register.
5. Use a Cash-Back-Rewards Site
You may not want to go to the level of those you see on the show Extreme Couponing, but to save money on groceries, you don't have to. Instead, use a cash-back-rewards site to get rebates on foods you usually buy at your favorite stores.
6. Have a Potluck
Hosting dinners and events can get expensive if you do it often enough. Still, you don't have to limit fun times with your family or friends. Have a potluck every month instead, and keep being social without it burning a hole in your pocket every time.
7. Stock Up
We run a lot of errands, especially on weekends. One thing you can do is carry snacks and drinks in the trunk of your car, so you don't feel tempted to buy them for marked-up prices at gas stations (You can buy them from wholesale-warehouse club stores).
8. Meatless Mondays
Meat can be expensive, so Meatless Mondays can be a good way to slash your grocery spending and try some new recipes. Plus, it's better for the environment.
9. Eliminate Food Waste
We save on food waste by using resources like Eat-by-Date. We also shop for groceries every two-to-four weeks, which helps us save on food overall since I'm not in the store every week buying stuff.
10. Plan Out Meals
Meal prep may take a bit of time, but it's well worth it and will help you save money in the long run. Planning meals saves me a lot of time and stress during the week. Check out these $5 Meal Plans if you're looking for ideas and look over these freezer meal prep options to help you get started.
11. Make a List Based on Your Meal Plan
Don't go grocery shopping on an empty stomach and without a list. Creating a grocery list helps you stick to your budget and reduces impulse purchases. Before leaving the store, check your receipt to ensure there are no errors. (This happens more than you think and can cost you more than you intended to spend.)
12. Buy Your Favorite Foods in Bulk
Take advantage of bulk stores and wholesale warehouses. You get a substantial discount by paying for larger amounts of items at once, plus it saves you weekly grocery-shopping time.
13. Get a Green Thumb
It's easy to learn how to plant your own vegetables and herbs. If you have space, set up a garden, or grow herbs inside to help reduce your grocery bill.
Living paycheck to paycheck can make you feel limited in terms of how fast you can pay off debt and what you can save. The key is to get creative with your budget and how you manage money. Start with these tips if you’re looking to save and also realize that living paycheck to paycheck doesn’t have to be your future. Take steps to start building up your emergency fund, increasing your income, and taking specific actions to improve your financial situation.
Also, check out my Budget Beyond Your Paycheck worksheet bundle to help you stay on track.