When you’re trying to save money, one of the first things you should look at is the amount you’re spending on groceries! It’s so easy to tell yourself you’re just ducking into the shops for some milk and bread and end up walking out with with a block of chocolate, a blender, a Jamie Oliver bowl and some fancy protein powder. Finding ways to save money on your groceries can end up saving a lot in the long run. Here are some tips to help you stick to a grocery budget and save some money on your grocery bill!
1. Write a list and stick to it
Although it seems simple enough, I know first hand how boring it can be to sit down and write down your list. I used to get a few ingredients in and tell myself “Argh, It’s not like I’m going to forget anything!” and give up. After a while however, I realised that not having a list was actually costing me money in the long run. I would forget all the dinners I had planned and just end up with a lot of random ingredients that would often go to waste in my fridge before I could figure out how to use them.
So, saying that, one of my biggest pieces of advice is to write a list and stick to it! Figure out your meals for the week, write down your list and just buy what’s on there. To make it even simpler, costing and tallying up the price before you go there will save you from the inevitable frustration of it costing more than you expected and you can relax. Don’t forget your reusable bags!
2. Buy home brand
Yes, this one may seem simple and kind of silly, but buying home brand can really make a difference and save you a lot of money on your groceries! You can get almost anything home brand these days, from toothpaste, to pasta that cost unto 50-70% less. This adds up and can save you hundreds of dollars over a few months!
3. Have a few meat free meals
Whether you enjoy your roast chicken and veggies every night, or you’re a seafood kind of person, meat can really add up and end up costing you a lot. When you eat meat with every meal, that is a lot of money being spent! By adding vegetarian meals to your weekly meals, you can end up saving a lot of money on your grocery bill. Meals that include proteins such as beans or lentils can be super cheap and be filling as well!
4. Never, I repeat never go shopping on an empty stomach
Now this next one is tricky and has the power to override even the best shopping list. Going shopping when you’re hungry can potentially cause you to throw out any reasoning and go completely primal. I have experienced this many times, before I finally told myself enough! When you’re hungry, your brain is trying to seek out anything that will make you feel good and will trick you into thinking you NEED those expensive yoghurts or that gourmet ice cream. You will most likely end up spending significantly more than you intended to and feeling not so good when you have to reach for your wallet.
Instead, if you must go shopping and you’re feeling hungry, have a small snack before you go. Something like a piece of fruit or a musli bar will take away that desperate hunger and give you a burst of energy to get through your grocery shop. Going shopping when you’re not desperately hungry will potentially end up saving you money on your groceries and stop that buyers remorse when you get home.
5. Buy in bulk
I know this next one can seem a little ‘Extreme Couponing’, but I guarantee in the long run it will help you save money on your groceries! So, next time you’re shopping and that toilet paper has a really good deal going on, why not buy 3, or 4, or 5! By spending money now, and buying in bulk, you are potentially saving a lot of money in the long run. My favourite thing to stow away in bulk is hair conditioner, because that stuff can be expensive! As soon as I see a sale, I buy as many as I can justify, which has saved me up to $300 over the past few months. Buying in bulk is a great way to stay stocked up on all the important goods and save money on your groceries! Refer to this post for a list of the best food to buy in bulk.
If you’re trying to save money, looking at your grocery bill and trying to save money on your groceries can make a big difference to your monthly and even yearly spendings!