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We spend a lot of our time going grocery shopping. This can often be a confusing experience for individuals because there are so many options for every item on your list. We only have so much money that we have to spend on groceries. This guide will help you shop efficiently so you have more money in your pocket and more of what you love in your fridge.
How Do You Go Grocery Shopping?
Before you go grocery shopping you should have a proper grocery list. A grocery list will help you plan out and organize what you need to buy. By sticking to your grocery list you will reduce the chances of impulse buying. Whenever you impulse buy, you tend to spend more than you want and you may be buying things that you don’t actually need. This just makes your grocery bill a lot higher than it should be. If you want to stay healthy, it’s important to have a proper grocery list.
You can easily break up the list into different sections of the store such as:
- Cleaning products
- Household goods
Simply tailor the list to what you need and then use that when going shopping. There are many smartphone apps that you can use to create a list and check it off as you go. Otherwise, you can never go wrong with an old-fashioned pen and paper!
Before you go to the grocery store, you should always eat a good meal. The reason for this is that it reduces the temptation that you might have to load up on junk food. If you’re very hungry when you shop you may be more likely to pick up sugary drinks, chips, cake, cookies, and other unhealthy foods.
Making a Healthy Grocery Shopping List
If you’re health conscious, it’s important that you make a healthy grocery shopping list. This means that you’re going to write down all of the healthy food choices that you want to buy while you’re at the store. Make sure you actually want them though! Don’t stock up on products that will eventually hit the trash. When it comes to healthy food you’re most likely going to be buying whole foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grain foods, etc. Most stores have organic options, if you’d like to try those as well.
Once you have created your list, you should stick to it when you get to the grocery store to ensure that you’re only going to buy healthy food. Resist the temptation that you have to buy pre-made meals, boxed food, and food with a lot of ingredients. Whenever you find something in a package, make sure you read the ingredient list. Look for foods with a limited amount of added ingredients and avoid artificial colors or flavors.
15 Frugal Tips to Save You Money
We all want to save money so you have more money for groceries. Here are 15 frugal tips that you can use to keep more money in your pocket!
Buy in Bulk
One way to save money is to buy your food in bulk. You can usually get more for your money when you buy bulk foods. This also allows you to have more on hand of one particular item. Make sure you buy items that are not going to spoil right away. If you can freeze the item then it is possible to buy items in bulk such as meats, fish, or other items that can be frozen.
Case Lot Sales
Grocery stores will often have what are called case lot sales. For example, you may be able to get twelve cans of chicken for a lower price than you would pay buying them individually. This can be a great way to save money because you’re getting more for your dollar. It’s an excellent way to get healthy canned foods which you can store for a longer time. Case Lot sales are often a great way to get household items you need on a daily basis such as napkins, toilet paper, paper towel, and so on in addition to regular foods that you eat on a daily basis.
You should take advantage of flyer sales. Whenever the weekly flyers come out, make note of the items that are on sale and then you can stock up on things that you need. Some stores even send out emails or updates on an app, if you prefer to stay paperless.
You can send away for coupons from companies, clip them from magazines, newspapers, and even order them online. Coupons can help bring you significant savings on your grocery bill.
Buy What Only What You Need
When you go grocery shopping, only buy what you need. You don’t want to be buying things that you don’t actually need or going to use. This usually ends up being a waste of money. If it’s not on your list, it’s not going in the cart. Repeat as needed and walk away from the impulse buy bins!
Check Prices of Several Stores
Whenever you buy grocery items, you should check several stores for the best price. You can often save a significant amount of money on your grocery bill if you shop for different items at different stores. For example, one store might have the coffee you want on sale or is just cheaper than another store. This is a simple way to put more money back into your pocket.
Another way to save money on some simple food items is to go to your local economy shop. Many of these economy shops or dollar stores will stock daily items that you use each day and can even have some healthy food choices such as canned fish or similar food items. Some are even starting to carry organic options.
Avoid Middle of the Store
Most of the packaged food items are in the middle of the store. By walking around the outside this is where you’ll find the healthy food items. This is where the dairy, meat, bulk food, fruit, vegetables, and other healthy foods are.
Only Buy on Sale
Unless you truly need an item, try to only buy it when it’s on sale. You will save a tremendous amount of money by just buying items when they go on sale. You will have to plan your shopping more, but the savings that you get are can be significant.
Stick to Your Budget
When you go shopping, stick to your budget. Instead of simply going up to the register and using your bank card, consider taking cash with you. Commit to only using the cash in your wallet to buy your food items. This means you’ll have to keep track of the amount of money you can spend as you shop. This may help you get a feel for how much you’re actually spending, since your card swiping might be going unnoticed. Worth a try!
Reduce other Spending
To have enough money for groceries, you may need to cut back on another spending. To do this, consider reducing how much you eat out. Skip an expensive cafe coffee for an at-home brew. Instead of going out to lunch for fast food, brown bag it with some of your awesome grocery store finds. Frugal choices may also help you stick to healthier habits.
Make Healthy Food a Priority
Your food bill should be a priority. Whenever you budget for your monthly bills, make sure that you put money aside for food before you spend it on anything else. Of course, we don’t mean you should duck out on rent for the sake of groceries. Try to work enough in your budget so you’re not down to instant noodles at the end of the month (unless you’re into that; then ramen away!)
Don’t Shop with Distractions
If you feel stressed shopping with your kids, try to go without them. It’s very easy to give in to the temptation of your children because you want them to be happy. Try to leave the children at home and shop on your own. This might also help you feel less rushed, giving you enough time to shop for the best deals. However, if they’re older, learning how to shop with you will set them up for a lifetime of healthy habits. Let them get involved from the start of the list all the way to setting a meal on the table. You’ll enjoy great bonding time and teach them how to create healthy meals. Feed two birds with one scone!
Make sure you plan out our meals for the week. This can help you avoid getting something quick and on-the-go such as fast food. These sort of quick purchases add up very fast and you end up spending more than you want to spend. Having lunch sorted and dinner planned out will help you stay on track with eating at home.
There are many generic food brands that you can get in the store that are perfectly fine. Cut out the big name brand and get significant savings by buying generics instead of the brand-name foods.
Best Supermarkets for Online Shopping
Here are some top sites for online grocery shopping
- Amazon Grocery
- Fresh Direct
- Local Harvest
- Shop Food EX
- Wal-Mart Online
These are just a few examples of the many online shopping markets where you can get your food at. You should compare online prices as well as the prices at your local grocery store to determine the best way to not only eat healthily but save money at the same time.
What Foods Should You Eat Every Day?
If you want to stay healthy, there are several foods that you should be eating each day. You should be getting plenty of well-known superfoods such as:
- Dark, leafy greens (kale, spinach, romaine)
- Whole grains
- Beans (black, pinto, kidney; not the canned baked or refried ones)
- Fish, chicken, tofu
- Greek yogurt
Stay away from heavily processed food as those tend to be nutritionally lacking.
Hopefully these tips help you with your grocery shopping as well as help you save money on your grocery bill. You can still save money and eat healthy at the same time if you budget yourself and work sales to advantage.
Do you have any money saving shopping tips to share? Let us know how you stay healthy at the store down below!