The Cheap Grocery Shopping Guide For Busy Moms
Can You Buy Cheap Groceries These Days?
The other day, I have to admit that I was shocked to note that the price of brand name tuna fish had risen to over a dollar for a 5 ounce can. I like to buy a brand that advertises itself as “dolphin free”, and I thought I had to purchase a name brand to get that. However, I did notice that the store brand was still under eighty cents a can, and guess what? It also carries a “dolphin free” label! Maybe I should not admit that my family consumers a lot of canned tuna, but I will tell you that I cannot see paying twenty cents more a can for the same product, just because it carries a major brand name.
Check The Grocery Store Brand’s Price
This, of course, leads me into my first suggestion. You may have a fistful of coupons for a name brand product, but the store brand may still be less expensive. Most major grocery store brands are actually quite good. If your favorite brand name of tuna fish, salad dressing, or pickles seems pretty expensive, remain flexible. If you are not sure you will like another brand, just try one item to test it.
Take A Pantry Inventory Before You Shop
Before I started taking inventory, I cannot tell you how many times that I purchased salad dressing, pickles, or tomato sauce, brought them home, and realized that I already had plenty on hand. Meanwhile, I may have forgotten to pick up staples that I was out of like onions, ketchup, or salsa.
Should You Make A Grocery List?
Honestly, I am not big on making any sort of shopping list that is set in stone. I will advise you to make notes of any staple food that you need. Things like eggs, peanut butter, or rice might make this list. You may note other things, like produce or protein, but I would not be too specific.
If you can be fairly flexible about menu planning you can take advantage of in-store sales. There are a couple of very good reasons for taking this approach.
Take advantage of in-store sales or specials. My grocery store always has some sort of protein on sale. One week it may be ground meat. Another week it may be chicken. I can come up with a dozen ways to prepare any of these things, and I can maximize my budget if I take advantage of good deals.
My grocery store always has some items for sale. These may be because the store ordered too much, has discontinued an item, or has an item about to expire. This often provides me with a good opportunity to pick up canned or packaged goods that I can use to prepare meals.
I enter the store knowing i need to purchase items to prepare a week’s worth of meals for my families. But I do not always have a set idea on what these meals would be. By shopping sales, I get a good opportunity to save, and sometimes it helps me provide variety. Make a list, but don’t carve it in stone!