Times are tough, and shoppers everywhere are looking for any opportunity to save money. Your grocery bill is certainly a huge part of your monthly expenses, and a great place to look for ways to cut back. But not everyone is a dedicated coupon clipper, nor necessarily wants to be. Clipping coupons takes a ton of time and energy, and also won’t help at all if you are absentminded and forget them at home. So are there other effective ways to pay less for groceries that don’t require clipping coupons? Luckily for us anti-clippers, there certainly are. Here is a quick look at a couple methods you can use to save on your grocery bill without relying on coupons.
Avoid the name brands. Every supermarket in the country has its own private label versions of most of your favorite products. They’re often made by the same quality manufacturers, but can be sold at a discount because they don’t spend on marketing and advertising a name brand. Check the ingredients list to make sure you’re content with the food, but switch over to these generic labels whenever possible. Some supermarkets even offer private label organic products, so you can save money while still maintaining healthy, sustainable eating habits.
Cut down on bottled drinks. Soft drinks aren’t only a significant source of empty calories, they’re also a significant line item in your grocery budget. Try to reduce the amount of sweetened beverages that you buy, and you’ll save big. Bottled water is also a culprit of higher food bills. There may be little to no difference in quality between bottled water and what you can drink at home, so switch to tap whenever you can. If you’re concerned about impurities, buy a water filtration system for the home. You’ll still make up for the initial investment in the long term.
Consider ways to reduce food waste. Sometimes it isn’t what we buy that is the problem, but what we throw away. Write yourself out a menu plan for the week, and even further in advance if possible. Stick to it with your shopping, and you’ll end up wasting much less food. Keep in mind the size of your family when cooking meals, and try not to overdue it. You always say you will eat the leftovers, but they’ll end up in the garbage can more often than not. And try to stick to recipes that have a short list of ingredients. Every once in awhile it’s great to try something new, but if you end up buying several products to use for a single meal, chances are the rest will go to waste. Keeping all these elements in mind will surely shrink your grocery bill.
Think about what you eat as much as what you pay for it. Prepared foods may save you some time and energy in the kitchen, but they’ll always cost more than if you bought the ingredients and made it from scratch. If you can reduce your reliance on heavily-packaged, prepared foods, you’ll notice a difference in your shopping bills almost immediately. Additionally, consider buying your staples in larger packages. If you eat oatmeal every morning, buy a bulk canister rather than small packets. And cook things at night that you’d be fine eating as leftovers for lunch the next day. Stretching one meal into two is a fantastic way to save money, and doesn’t require any grocery coupons.