Thursday, December 11, 2008

20 Ways to save on groceries

Have you recieved your Womans Day January 2009 magazine? One of the best so far. In this issue they show you 20 ways to save on groceries. This is a great list of easy ways to save that wont confuse anyone. Most ive been using forever but some are a new. Here is the list of 20 ways to save on groceries with my twist on them.
Thanks to Womans Magazine!
1. Shop alone-OMG really did you need to put this on the list? As a mom, this is a big tip. How many times did you find things in your cart that you didnt put in? Or realized after you drove home that you were over charged but didnt notice because you were tired of yelling at the kids to stop fighting? Uhh huhhh. Need I go on? Trade babysitting days with a friend so both you can go shopping without the kids. Save yourself a bundle this way.
2.Buy only what you need-Duh. This will save you a ton. Instead of getting things because they sound good, get them because you need them. Think "Do I really need that icecream that is $5?" 95% of the time the answer is NO!
3. Supersize-You usually get the best price on meats when you buy the larger cuts of meat. You can have them cut it for you and pay the same price for not cut meat. You can repackage it and freeze it for later use. I 100% of the time do this. I buy packages of chicken legs for .99 cents per lb, split them up and refreeze them. Same with any other meat.
4.DIY and save-another DUH! Of course if you do it yourself, its gonna be cheaper. My kids just love those small packages of crackers with cheese or peanut butter in them. I buy regular saltines ($1.25 box) and just throw some peanut butter between them. Done. I paid pennies vs the $1.50 for 6 small packs of 6. I DIY everything. No boxed meals, no prepared meals, no easy too cook just add water anything. My kids now prefer me cooking this way. They get stomach aches from any prepared anything. Too much sodium.
5.Dont over purchase-this is a big thing for me. I refuse to pay certian prices for things. I wont buy it unless it stays within my price range. We will just adjust and move on. Produce, refuse to pay more than $1 per lb. Meat no more than $1 per lb. When it goes on sale, I stock up. I make a plan to spend only a certian amount on anything. I shop enough to know whats a good deal and whats not. Some limit how much they can spend on a total grocery trip. This I dont advise. You want to take off one package of meat because you went over by $5? Not advised. Just stay within your spending limits on each item and you will be fine. Plus you will still get everything you need.
6.Say "So long to snack packs!"-These are just smaller less expensive packs but if you add up how many small packs are usually in 1 box and compare, your spending more $. Plus usually these items are not healthy. No snack packs in our house unless they are freebies I recieved in the mail. We save those for long trips to events or family outings.
7. Weigh your choices-When you see oranges $1 per pound, then you see 4 lb oranges in a bag for $1.98. HHmmm which do you choose. Of course the bag. Your paying only 50 cents per lb instead of $1. Do your math. You cant always judge a orange by picking up each and every one and choosing them. The bag has done all this work for you. Do the math!
8. Go generic-Why buy Ritz Crackers for $3.50 a box when I can get Winco brand ritz type crackers that taste the same for only $1.35? Duh! There is no differance between these crackers. They are just price differances. Do yourself a favor and get generic brands. The only reason I will ever buy name brand is if I have a coupon or the item is on sale for cheaper. This doesnt happen often so dont get your hopes up.
9. Compare cost per lb or per unit-Those places like Costco and Sams Club are not always deals. I found that buying diapers with coupons, sales, etc were so much cheaper than getting a big box from these places. Sometimes I get them for free. So remember if you get coupons from these brands, certian stores have them for cheaper, etc. Places like Winco have info on their tags. they tell you how much per ounce each item is so you know which is the best deal.
10.Make friends with the butcher-Ask your local butcher what days and times they do their markdowns. My local Safeway and Fred Meyers do theirs about every other day right after opening. So I hit them up around 10am. Not too early and not too late. Never hurts to ask.
11.Check out the chicks-A precooked roaster chicken is just a chicken they cooked and marked at a higher price. Dont pay more for a differant label, just buy the whole uncooked chicken and cook it. Much cheaper and you can control the sodium, and how much spices go into it. Plus you will have cash left over in your pocket.
12.Think ahead-If your family never finishes a bowl of noodle casserole, then take 1/3 out that you know they wont eat and freeze it before you even bring it to the table. Use it for a lunch later. Same goes for any other meal. 1 whole chicken will be 1 dinner plus 3 lunches for my husband. Plus the bones will be turned into broth. My $4 investment has now turned into many many other things.
13. Invest in a second freezer. I dont need this because my fridge has a huge freezer. Plus im so forgetful that I would forget what ive put in there. But for those who are really organized and have a good memory, this is a must. You can stock pile up on stuff like meat, vegies, and specials. Try to get a Energy Star one so you can save on energy as well. Right now this economy is trying to recover so there are tons of specials., rebates, etc. Take advantage!
14. Shop with left overs in mind-Like whole chickens stated in #12. Or left over turkey. Rethink these items. I save left over dark meat chicken for soups. Much more moist and yummier! Rethink your left overs.
15.Learn when to leave left overs way! Just doesnt work. Dressed salad just isnt the same 2nd time around. Make what you need with these items.
16.Count on discount and clearance stores-Grocery Outlet is fabulas store that sells items that are overstock, froze at sell date, testing products, smashed packaging, etc. I LOVE this store. So I usually will hit this store up before I go to my major shopping. Everything is always cheaper there.
17. Visit price clubs with a friend.-Maybe you dont need that much cheese but its a super deal. Split it with a friend. My mom and I used to get buy 1 get 1 free large packages of meat. We would split the price and each would take a package of meat. Super savings this way.
18.Buy a Sunday or Wednesday paper-this is a must for those who have alot of stores to choose from. I have 2 stores so this doesnt apply to me. I get alot of coupons from my blog freebies post and other blogs. Usually samples come with coupons that are better than the papers plus the expiration date is a year away unlike the papers. Your choice on this one.
19. cut corners on clipping coupons-As stated above this one is by choice. Online coupons are sometimes good besides regular coupons. Keep on top of the blogs or freebie sites. They will post deals that last 1 day only or up to a week. My christmas cards (60 for $3.49 shipped) or build a bear (this week ) 2 for $19 shipped. Keep tabs on these things.
20. Stock up on local seasonal produce-I buy only seasonal produce. Right now pumpkins,etc are on sale. I buy that and freeze them. Use them for later. I do this all year and manage to get my produce for an average of 50 cents per pound. Which is a good deal. So alter your meals around this tip alone and save hundreds each year. Plus how much fun is it to cook differantly every time? My kids can look foward to certian things on each season.

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