Sunday, January 17, 2010

Saving Money on your Grocery Bill

Tired of wasting money on groceries? Tired of throwing food away? Tired of buying something only to find out it was on sale last week? Making dinner and realize that you are missing the key ingredient?

With organization these woes can be solved! First of all, I must tell you that I am pretty frugle and LOVE to save money! I get excited over a good deal! With that being said, I will share with you the ways I save my family money by shopping smart.

When I lived in the United States, I was a religious coupon clipper. In Sunday's newspaper, I would clip coupons and scan the ads for good deals. There were several products that I refused to buy without a coupon. I keep my coupons in two envelopes. One envelope has coupons for groceries and one for household items. However, now living in Canada, coupons are hard to come by! They do not come in the newspapers. I have found a few online sites that offer coupons in Canada, but I find that to be really time consuming and often not worth my time to do it. Therefore, I had to come up with a better way to save money on our groceries and household items.

Using the Weekly Ads to Save Money

Now I scan the weekly ads that come in the mail on Fridays. On the weekend, I look over the ads, find out what is on sale, and make a list. My list looks something like this:

  • fruits/vegetables

  • bakery/bread

  • deli

  • meats/seafood

  • grocery items

  • refrigerated/dairy

  • frozen

  • paper/cleaning products

  • health/beauty items

  • miscellaneous

Note: So I remember where the item is on sale, I put the first letter of the store next to the item.

Meal Planning According to What is On Sale

Next, I plan my meals around what meat and fruits/vegetables are on sale for that week. On the back of my list, I write the meals that we will be having for the week. When meal planning for your family, think about what your family enjoys, but don't be afraid to try something new as well!

Buying in Bulk or Family Sized-Items

I typically buy in bulk for many items. Please note that most of the time, but not always, it is more cost effective to buy in bulk. Pay attention to the unit price to which size of an item is the better deal. You should see this on the price tag by the scu number. Items that are nonperishable or frozen (or can be frozen) are best to buy in bulk because they will not go bad, as long as you have the storage space and/or a freezer for such items.

I always buy meat/fish in family pack sizes when they are on sale. I then divide the meat/fish into dinner-sized portions, label, and freeze. In the summer, when berries are at their best, I wait for them to go on sale, wash them, pat dry, layer in a single layer on a cookie sheet, and freeze. Once they are frozen transfer them to freezer bags and label.

I hope these ideas can help you save time and money at the grocery store! By taking the time to look over the ads and making a grocery list, it can save you time

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