Grocery shopping; some enjoy it while others hate it. Regardless of whatever side you’re on, it cannot be avoided. However, with the right grocery shopping tips, you can stretch your dollars and make it more fun to go to the store.
We often come up with comprehensible grocery lists only to make it to the check out with a little more than we need. Blame it on the music they play in the stores or the strategically placed products. Yet, nobody likes having to part with a hefty amount of money at the checkout, regardless of how fun it was to waltz through the aisles.
So, how can you put an end to this tyranny? How can you transform yourself into that savvy shopper that rarely overspends, but sticks to her budget? Well, below we share a few tips on how to become one.
Without further ado, below are the top tips on how to get the most out of your grocery store.
Always Carry Your List
It’s one thing to actually craft a list of the things you need to buy and it’s another to actually adhere to it. You put careful thought in constructing it, why not use it effectively? As you crafting it, however, be sure you take full stock of the things you actually have and don’t need before jotting stuff down.
Before leaving your house and heading to the grocery store, you want to be sure that you’ve carried the list with you. If you wind up at the store without it, you’re less likely to stick to it. Without your list to guide you, you’ll end up purchasing items that you don’t need.
Create a Budget
Whilst creating your budget, you want to know where you are financially. This will help you create a budget that will keep you operating away from the red. Once you have a budget crafted, you can create an effective shopping list. The list should not only have the things that you need but items that are on sale and can help you save money.
Have A Pantry Checklist
This checklist should account for everything that is stored in the pantry. Once you’ve used up a certain item, check it off the list. This way, you’ll be able to keep track of the things that you need.
Buy Things In Bulk
This is when you take advantage of the sale cycles in stores which often happen monthly. Find out what is on sale for each month and stock up on them. This way, you’ll be able to save on money.
Keep A List On Your Fridge
This type of list allows you to keep track of the things that you run out of immediately. By jotting down the items you need immediately, you’ll avoid forgetting them while crafting your shopping list.
Pro Tip: My husband and I also use the free version of the Wunderlist app to keep a running grocery store items we need. The lists sync with each other so they’re always up-to-date and we can never forget the list and accidentally over-buy.
Avoid Shopping When Hungry
If you go hungry, you’ll end up buying items that you do not need, especially junk food. Go shopping after you’ve eaten.
Craft An Effective Weekly Menu
Craft a weekly menu of your meals. This helps guide you on the things that you need to buy at the grocery store. Also, it helps you meal prep before time and take care of your family.
We like to stick with easy 1-pan meals like baked chicken, sweet potatoes, and broccoli.
Pro Tip: New to meal-planning? Here’s Meal Planning 101 for Beginners and here are some Meal Planning Template printables. We have also LOVED using Hello Fresh 2x a week to off-set some of the meals we have to figure out. It’s also had the unexpected benefit of helping me learn how to cook! 10/10 recommend! Here’s a $40 coupon to try out the best meal box and see what you think.
Buy Frozen Veggies and Fruits
Frozen veggies and fruits rarely go bad as opposed to fresh produce. They are almost as good as fresh produce and they last longer. Hence, you can buy them in bulk and save on money.
Pro Tip: Make up baggies with smoothie supplies and freeze them so they’re ready to go in the mornings or for quick on-the-fly meals. (I like to chop up bananas that are close to going bad and oats and spinach leaves.)
Try Online Shopping
Try making a list and shopping for the groceries online. This will help lower the chances of impulse buying since you won’t have to walk through the aisles yourself, not to mention all time it saves.
Save Your Receipts
Receipts are great when you have to find out the price of a certain item. They also help you compare prices at different stores. Some stores tend to sell certain items at a cheaper price than others. Saving your receipts is one of the best grocery shopping
Purchase The Off-Brand Version
Most stores often manufacture and produce similar versions of the items that are manufactured by your favorite brand. Such items are called “off-brand” or generic and they are often significantly cheaper.
Cut Down On Your Meat Purchases
Meat is expensive and cutting down on it can help save considerable amounts of money. Get creative with your cooking and only use meat to supplement your diet every now and then.
Coupons can help you save tons of money, so use them when you can. Recently, people have been using couponing apps that help them with their money-saving endeavors.
Buy Meat When On Sale
As previously mentioned, meat is expensive. Instead of cutting it out of your diet completely, keep a look out for when it’s on sale. You can also opt for the cheaper cuts of meat.
Don’t Go Shopping with an Over-Spender
If your husband/wife/partner/roomate is an over-spender, then he or she should be banned from shopping. If you’re the over-spender, then maybe you should consider having someone else do the shopping.
Adhere To The Use-It-Up Challenge
Let’s be honest. We will see something in the store that will most likely catch our attention. To avoid purchasing it and exercise some will power, as yourself if you really need it.
The Use-It-Up Challenge is where you identify three ways to use the item. If you can’t identify at least three uses for the item, then you don’t need it.
Have we left off an