1. Go groceries shopping alone- Always plan your meals in advance so you can create a comprehensive list of the items that you need to buy. Always make sure that you stick with the list that you created and to never buy unnecessary items. Furthermore, it would be best to go grocery shopping alone especially if you have children. Children have the tendency to grab a lot of stuff which you can not say no to which in turn will make you go over budget. Also, if you shop alone, you will have more time to visit different grocery stores which will allow you to compare the prices and score the best deals and rates.
2. Avoid buying prepared food and meals- People have repeated this again and again but it is actually true that making food from scratch is actually much cheaper than buying already prepared meals. However, you also need to be a smart shopper. For example, if there are deals, promotions or sales on food, you might need to compute which one is cheaper: buying a ready-made pasta sauce or buying all of the ingredients needed to make one. Being a smart shopper means keeping track of the food you regularly eat and coming up with ways to lower the amount of money you spend on them. Furthermore, you might want to check out and taste the supermarket food brands as they can be really cheaper compared to renowned food brands.
3. Learn a thing or two from vegetarians- Meat is the most expensive ingredient that shoppers usually buy. You can cut down on your grocery bills by making vegetables the main part of your meals. If you feel like the change is a little bit drastic, you can start simple by removing meat in lasagnas and spaghettis. You could also look for recipes making use of tofu and tempeh which are meat alternatives.
4. Make meat as your side dish- Take your cue from Chinese dishes which utilize a small portion of meat in their dishes. You can mix a few slices of meat with vegetables if you are still yearning for the flavor of meat.
5. Buy in bulk- Buying in bulk regardless of what it is always cheaper. If you are worried about not being able to use the food ingredients and wasting them, you can just store them in the freezer to be used for later. You could also stock up on non-perishable items such as toilet paper, dish washing detergents, laundry soaps, etc. especially when stores have promotional sales and deals.
6. Save leftovers- Leftovers should always be put in the freezer instead of in the refrigerator if you wish to save them and eat them for later. To avoid throwing out food, make it a habit to always pack them properly and to put them in the freezer. In this way, the food will remain fresh and eatable even after a week or so.
7. Save vegetable and meat trimmings- Often times, when people cook, they tend to throw away the parts that are not needed for the recipe even if those parts can be used. Therefore, it is suggested that you save the vegetable and meat trimmings that you can for other recipes. You can use them to create soup.
Budgeting is hard especially if you are trying to budget your necessities. It is important that you always get your credit report checked so that you are updated of your finances and can determine how much budget you can work with. Cutting down on grocery bills is totally possible. Just make sure that you know where the right resources and what the right practices are to make sure that you do not compromise you and your family health.