How to save money on groceries and food shopping is part of my money-saving series sharing tips and hints gained over the years and from thrifty and frugal people. With the increasing cost of living and the massive rise in inflation, being a savvy shopper and spender has never been more critical. Getting the most out of your money is something I have learned over the years and I am happy to share it with you.
If you want to save money on groceries and food shopping, a piece of general advice is to look for deals at Latest Deals, their website publishes hundreds of new deals daily, and you will be able to find discounted groceries and food. They also have a supermarket comparison tool, allowing you to find the lowest price for a specific product. Make sure to check their website to start saving tons of money.
So many of us are feeling the financial pinch at the moment and according to Netmums the average family of four in the UK spends £409 a month on groceries and food shopping and WRAP shows that the average family with children throw away on average £60 worth of food a month. So there are defiantly ways to save money on our grocery shopping.
20+ Ways to to Save Money on Groceries
This list includes easy ways to save money that you can start using right now. Tips that will help you make savings straight away.
1) Meal plan
I swear by meal planning – so much so I wrote a whole post on how to meal plan and stick to it. This is the biggest way I save money, but only buying the food we need when we need it and, therefore, reducing waste.
2) Write a shopping list
Following on from meal planning take a shopping list with you to the supermarket and only buy what is on it! A grocery list and a grocery budget will help you keep your shopping on track and srtop those impluslse purchares.
3) Shop Online
Buying your groceries online often makes it easier to stick to a shopping list, as it eliminates the temptations presented when walking around the supermarket. It’s also easy to search for the specific items on your list, making your shopping experience quick and easy. You can also save on fuel by shopping online.
4) Downscale your shopping trollet
One way of instantly making savings in the supermarket is to ‘downscale’ your brand choices. For example, if you usually buy the most popular brand name products ie Heinz Baked Beans, you would simple ‘drop down’ a level and try the Premium supermarket brand instead.
Likewise, if you usually buy premium supermarket brands, you can downscale to regular store brands, and then to the basics range.
Downscaling your shopping basket has to include an element of trial and error, while you discover which items you are happy to downscale on and which you simply can’t compromise on. However, simply downscaling on some items can save a considerable amount on your groceries bill up to £1000 according to Money Supermarket.
5) Change Where you Shop
I am not ashamed to admit we are an Aldi family. Our closet supermarket is Aldi, however, we were Aldi shoppers long before they were the closest as they were the cheapest for us. But we also shop at B&M, Home Bargains and Lidl too!
6) Buy Frozen
Frozen fruit and vegetables is often so much cheaper and you don’t lose any taste or vitamins compreaed to free. Cardiff Mum on Instagram, has been working with Aldi and she has a great 5 meals for £25 using Aldi’s frozen food.
7) Use Free Supermarket Loyalty Schemes
If the supermarket you shop at has a loyalty card then make sure you use it. When a loyalty card is free there is no reason not to have one.
- The Sainsbury’s Nectar card
- My Waitrose
- Tesco Clubcard
- Co-op membership
- Morrisons More
- Marks & Spencer Sparks
- Iceland’s Bonus Card
- Asda Rewards
- Lidl Plus
8) Bulk Buy
There are savings to be made if you bulk purchase or buy from a big box store like Costco, but beware that you can only save if you stick to your shopping list nad do not get tempted to buy more than you planned. Also you need to factor in any memberships fees for wholesale clubs which are usually an annual fee. You really MUST know your unit prices.
I have noticed that sometimes the largest washing powder box isn’t actually the most cost-effective one to buy. The other thing to note about bulk buying is that you won’t make a saving if you get through the bulk purchase just as quickly as if you’d bought a smaller size or amount. I find this to be a particular problem if I *ahem* bulk buy chocolate!
9) Never Shop when You are Hungry
I know it sounds simple, but honestly you make poor nutritional choices if you shop when you are hungry and this is backed by research (just look it up)! You will be surprised at how many impulse buysare hunger driven!
10) Know the difference between a ‘best-before’ and ‘use-by’ date
Past use-by date? Bin it! Use-by means just that. Eating nosh beyond that date is risky, even if it looks and smells fine. Typical foods to watch include dairy, milk, fish and eggs.
Past best-before date? Still edible but may lose flavour/texture. Best-before labels usually have nothing to do with safety; they’re just the manufacturer’s view of when they’re at optimum quality. This is usually longer-lasting foods such as frozen meals, tins, sugar, pasta and cereals.You can eat after the best before. Use smell, taste and sight to check it’s OK. If so, the only downside’s that the food may lose some flavour and texture. Love Food Hate Waste is great for more advise on this.
11) Buy Seasonally at the Market
If you have the luxury of a local market, farmers market or veg shop then it will be less edxpeinseive to buy seasonal produce there. that will help to save money on your groceries
12) Become a ‘Whoops Warrior’
Different supermarkets tend to reduce items at certain points of the day.It pays to work out when your local supermarket sticks on those yellow labels and try to shop around it – My Dad was amazing at this and had a relationship with his local supermarket!
13) Buy Beyond Best-Befores
Not only is it usually safe to eat food items beyond best-befores, it’s legal to sell them. The online store, Approved Food, specialises in out-of-date stock at around a third of the price. Delivery’s £3 per box and there’s a minimum spend of £22.50, so it’s really only worth it if you’re bulk-buying.
14) Ditch the Ready Meals
Learn to cook your favorite ready meals, they will be so much less expensive and it you batch cook you can have one in the freezer for next time. There are lots of really great recipes online that will help you ditch the ready meals.
15) Store your food correctly
Check the best way to store different foods so they don’t go off before you get to use them. Check use-by dates too. If you don’t have a plan to use something before its use-by date, can you freeze it?
16) Compare Supermarket Prices
If there is a barnded product that you can not do without then compare prices with a site such as Trolly or SupermarketCompare You can also set alerts for when the price of your favourite drop. They looks at the supermarkets including Tesco, Asda, Waitrose, Ocado, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Iceland, Co-op, Boots and Wilko.
17) Use Coupons
While it is still possible to clip coupons out of a magazine or newspaper, there are now fewer of these coupons available. Like many things, couponing has largely gone digital so it is worth having the supermarket apps on your phone or doing a quick google search before shopping.
18) Check Your Receipt for Wrong Prices
If you notice an error on your receipt after checking out, take it to the customer service desk and let them know. They’ll return your money if you were overcharged on your grocery bill.
19) Reduce the amount of Meat you Eat
Veggie and vegan diets have become more popular in recent years. Of course, this is very much a personal choice – for some, giving up meat may not seem like a simple step. Yet many people have switched for environmental reasons – and you may well find you end up saving as a result too.
20) Know what you have
Make sure you have an inventory of what you have in the refrigerator, freezer, pantry and store cupboard. You fo not need to but yet another tin of tomatoes no matter the cost if you have 10 already.
21) Try Low Aisle Shopping or a different aisle
Sounds mad I know but ofdtren supermarkets put the cheaper staples on the lowest shelf as people tend to shop more at eye level. Also cotton buds are often cheaper in the baby isle and you can get much better deals on spices in the world food aisle.
22) Get a Good Cash Back Credit Card on Groceries
Did you know you can put hundreds of pound back in your wallet every year just by changing the plastic you use at the supermarket register? Of course, this tip is only for those who pay off their bills in full each month. If you don’t, you’ll pay more interest than you’ll get back in rewards.
Other Energy & Money Saving Tips:
- How to tighten your budget without impacting upon family life
- How to Save Energy when Cooking
- Budgeting Tips for University Students
- Frugalist Guide to Staying Fashionable on A Budget
- How to create a magical Christmas on a budget
- Teaching kids budgeting – Cash versus card
- Cooking with kids – budgeting, buying and cooking
- Creating a family budget
- Budget Pouches and Cash Budgeting
- Decorating on a Budget
- Rising Costs of Energy and Inability to Pay – An insiders guide
- Money Saving Tips For A Cosy Garden All Year
- Eight Ways to Help You Be Responsible with Money
- Money-saving tips for UK family holidays
- How to be a Savvy Spender this Christmas