Save money on your grocery bill with these 10 easy tips. Make these money saving tips a part of your shopping routine and you'll be surprised how much you save.
I know we are all looking to save money or make a little extra money these days. Money can get tight when we have little ones who rely on us for everything. Somedays there doesn't seem to be easy ways to make the finances stretch far enough.
I've been in that boat way too often. Now that my boys are teenagers, I feel like our biggest expense in life is feeding them. They are ALWAYS hungry.
So I've been applying the old saying "A Penny Saved is A Penny Earned" to my grocery bill and have found some great ways to save money at the Grocery store. If you are looking for ways to save and reduce your grocery bills, check out these great ideas.
After all "If Mama Aint Happy, Nobody's Happy", right?
1. Look Through The Grocery Ads
In our town, the weekly grocery sales ads come out in the local free newspaper every Wednesday. Sometimes you can find them online the night before on the store's Facebook pages, but that's too much work for me. Saving time, also saves money.
When the ads arrive, I print out my Grocery Sales planner page and go through each store looking to see what's on sale. I write down everything that I might even remotely possibly need.
You can also use the Favado app that I raved about a while ago. It's great at telling you what's on sale, if it's a good price, and if there are coupons out to use too.
2. Plan Meals
Once I know what's on sale, I can decide on a menu plan. If pork and beans is on sale this week, I know we can make Hungry Jack Casserole for dinner one night. Or if Chicken is on sale, we can have Hawaiian Haystacks. Center your meals around what's on sale and that will help you save a ton of money.
If you've made a meal list of everything that your family loves to eat, you'll be able to do this step rather quickly. You won't have to remember everything you could possibly eat with that sale priced hamburger, you already have it on a master list.
3. Use a Price Book
There was a time that I knew the price of everything and where to get it. My memory isn't that good anymore. So I am working to create a price book that lists the normal price of everything I usually buy. (I hope to have this planner printable soon.)
This way I can look and see if that price on Sour Cream is really a good buy or if that's the price that a store has it normally. Yea, sometimes the stores don't really put things on sale, they just advertise it in their flyers making you think it's a good price. You're price planner will help you catch that.
4. Shop your cupboards
Once you have your menu plan, go through and make a list of everything you need for each one of your dinners. If one meal needs a can of Cream of Mushroom soup and so does another meal, make sure you note that. You don't want to think you only need a can and find yourself running back to the store while dinner's on the stove. That won't save you anything.
Use your shopping list to go through your own cupboards. Make sure you really need a third jar of Applesauce or another box of spaghetti.
5. Easily Print Out/Save Coupons
It used to be that you had to subscribe to the paper and get all the weekly coupons to save money with coupons, but that's not the case anymore. There are a lot of place that you can print out coupons online. You can print them from our sidebar from Coupons.com. You can visit the manufacturer's websites to print coupons. You can even visit some Facebook pages.
My favorite place is to print coupons from Swagbucks.com. I love Swagbucks and am always earning rewards cards from them my Christmas shopping. Swagbucks offers you 2 points per coupon you print and redeem. You are already going to use the coupons, so why not earn a little extra something from them that you can put towards Christmas, birthdays, or a secret Mom stash.
Make sure you also go to the store's website and load any coupons they have on to your loyalty shoppers card. This is the biggest mistake I make each week. Most stores have digital coupons that you can load directly on to your card and all you have to do is swipe your card as you check out.
6. Shop in Peace
I think the easiest way for us to save money when we go shopping is to shop in peace. Go with out your kids, without your hubby, or when the store is quiet. I think my favorite time of day is to go right after I drop my kids off at school. The stores are really quiet and I can take my time making sure I get the best deals and don't forget anything or don't have to buy something extra that's not on my list to keep my kids (or hubby) happy.
7. Shop at more than one Store
While more and more stores are price matching these days, it's often so much easier for me to grab sale items at the individual stores when I'm out running errands. I don't know that I would recommend making a special trip to that grocery store for one item, but if you are in the area later, drop in when you have a second and grab that sale item then.
8. Use Walmart Savings Catcher
I live in a small town so our biggest retailer is Walmart. I still try to shop at the little stores for the sale items, but the majority of my shopping is done at Walmart.
Once you are done shopping and have put away all the groceries, kick your feet up and keep saving some money. I use the Walmart Savings Catcher all the time.
If you have a smart phone you can download the app and simply scan the code at the bottom of your receipt. You'll get an email within a few days telling you if they found any lower prices in your area on items that you bought. If they did, then you can get that money back on a shopping card.
If you don't have a smartphone, you can visit the Walmart.com website and find the "Savings Catcher" link. Then you can just input your Walmart receipt number and it will do the same thing.
I'm saving all my "savings" for another Christmas gift. Since I'm so diligent about my shopping habits, I usually only save a dollar or two at a time, but it does add up. I'm almost at $50 right now. That should buy at least one or two gifts this December.
9. Use the Ibotta App
The Ibotta App is a little more tricky to use than Walmart's, but it is another way to get a little extra cash back. to use it, you need to go in and watch little videos or learn little facts to unlock the rebates for each item you purchased. Once the rebate is unlocked you take a picture of the receipt and Ibotta will give you the money to cash out.
The biggest pain about this app is that you have to scan the bottom bar codes on EVERYTHING to make sure the item is the correct one. That can be a little bit tedious after you've put things away, but it definitely beats doing it before when you are tearing apart the grocery bags trying to find each item.
It is good though because they have rebates on regular items that you may not be able to find coupons, sales or rebates on. Usually there are rebates for milk, fruit, vegetables, and generic items as well as specific items that I've never even heard of before.
10. Use your Menu Plan
It doesn't do any good for you to have gone through all this work if you decide to skip it all and go out to eat for dinner instead. You've made your menu plan, you have all the food you need, now go and use it. If you need to, turn your favorite meals in to Crock pot or Freezer dinners to save you time on those busy soccer days or late nights at the office.
How do you save money at the Grocery Store?