Just how do people save money on their grocery bills? Meal planning is commonly recommended, which incidentally also works on saving the waistline. Here’s a look at how to save money by meal planning and become a pro.
Get the Flyers and Coupons
Start by knowing where you will save money on your groceries. Grab the flyers and print out all your coupons. Don’t forget to check in your local newspapers and emails for the week’s deals. Go through each of the flyers and deals and circle the ones that are items you regularly buy or that you can use in your meal planning.
You’re not necessarily going to buy these. When you get to the stores, you want to check the prices against other branded and non-branded items of similar nature. Sometimes the deals in the flyers aren’t necessarily the best but they will give you a good start.
List Out All the Ingredients from the Recipes
Go through all the meals that you’re planning to make and make a list of all the ingredients. Consider recipes where you can bulk buy items to help cut down on the cost for that week. This is where the flyers will help with planning. If chicken is on offer rather than beef, you’ll want to look for meals that involve more chicken to take advantage of the saving. Likewise, if pork is on offer, look out for recipes so you can take advantage on that.
Go to the Grocery Store that Price Matches
Some grocery stores will price match against others, as long as you have proof of the offer available. Take your flyers or have your coupons available and show them at the till. This will help to keep the travel time and gas costs down. If you can’t find the item within your price matching store, make sure there are no cheaper offers first and then take a trip to the other store for your lower priced options.
Check If You Really Need to Buy Ingredients
Just because your recipes call for tinned tomatoes doesn’t necessarily mean you need to buy more. Check your cupboards to see if you have enough of ingredients already. Only mark down the ones that you actually need to buy from your list.
Doubling up won’t necessarily save you money in the future. You may not need the item again for a few weeks and by then they might go off. Of course, this is the case for fresh rather than frozen or tinned goods.
Avoid All Impulse Buys
Don’t forget to plan some snacks into your meal planning. This helps to curb cravings and anticipate some of the foods that you’ll want during the week. You’ll cut down the impulse buys in the store.
It’s real easy to say this but the number one rule you MUST follow is: Never buy anything that isn’t on your list! If it’s not there, it’s not been planned into your meal calendar and you definitely don’t need it. Stores are good at these impulse buys by putting items at the end of aisles or by offering amazing deals. Avoid the aisles if you find them too tempting and don’t need anything else from them.
Meal planning will save you money on your grocery shop. It will also avoid adding to your waistline. Don’t worry about how to save money by meal planning. Just follow the Goblin and you’ll be a pro like me in no time at all.