7 Ways to Save on Food Costs

Hello and welcome back to Business & Budgets! In this post I will be covering a few tips on how to save money when grocery shopping and when eating out. If you have purchased a copy of my book, Saving Money and Time in the Kitchen you are already familiar with all of these tips. If you do not have a copy of the workbook, click here to read a free preview.

Let's jump into our top seven list!

1) Know what's in your kitchen.

If you do not know what you have in stock before heading to the store you are more likely to buy things that you already have. Which means something is bound to go bad before you have the chance to eat it, especially with produce.

2) Never shop without a plan or on an empty stomach.

If you enter the grocery store with no grocery list, you will be exiting with a lot of unwanted/unneeded items. Don't just start grabbing things that you like to eat or that are on sale. Think it through, what are you going to cook with that? If you don't know, put it back. If you are shopping hungry, you are even more likely to fall for this, because you 're HUNGRY.

3) Take advantage of coupons and customer loyalty rewards.

If your local stores offer loyalty programs, make sure to get signed up. Check their website for digital coupons before heading out on your shopping trip. Make sure to use points and rewards before they expire.

4) Stop being stuck on name brands.

If nobody has ever told you this before, I'll be the first, it's okay to eat generic food. While many of us are stuck on brands because it's what we always ate or because it tastes better. Much of this is just untrue, here's the proof that most generic brands are just as good. Most importantly, they are better to your pockets.

5) Shop around at more than one store.

The biggest deals aren't stored all under one roof, you have to shop around. You may determine that the local farmer's market has the best deals on produce, but the local big box is better for buying snacks for lunch. When you are making your list notate which store you will be buying the item from so that you can best plan your trip. I typically try to not go to more than three stores, usually I shop at two stores, farmers market and Aldi.

6) Take dinner out in the AM.

Stop stressing yourself out when you arrive home. You enter the kitchen and jump into a frenzy to thaw out meat or figure out who is responsible for not taking it out when you called on your lunch break. Take out the meat or declare the meal of the evening before you leave for work. Moving chicken from the freezer the fridge in the rising has been such a lifesaver for me over the years.

7) Plan family nights around kids deals.

Who says family night has to be on the weekend? It makes sense that we often make our schedules around our days off. With so many 9-5 workers, it is no wonder that most family fun happens on the weekend. But, you can change this! It will save you a ton of money if you go bowling on $2 Tuesday instead of the Sunday "Family" night when prices are hiked back up. This is true for restaurants as well. The "Kids eat free" and "2 for $XX" deals are most likely to occur during the week.

Use these tips in your kitchen to cut your grocery budget. If you are ready to really maximize your savings, grab a copy of my book Saving Money & Time in the Kitchen. This book is filled with worksheets to help you customize the techniques to fit your shopping and family needs. The more strategies you apply to your life, the more you will save. The average reader saves $50 per month after using this workbook, some shoppers save up to $100 per month! Get yours from here on the site or over at Amazon and start creating your Strategic Food Plan!