In this article, you will learn the best ways to shop for groceries on a budget.
Imagine this: You are at the grocery store checkout. The cashier is scanning your items and you see the total climbing higher and higher. The last item passes over the scanner with a beep, and the cashier announces the grand total. Sigh…you are WAY over budget yet again.
How do you feel?
It is way too easy to overspend at the grocery store. When we created our budget last year, I realized I was spending at least $200 a week on food for my family of three. Crazy, right?
Things needed to change, so I started reading articles about how other families shop for groceries on a budget. After some trial and error, I came up with a strategy that has shaved almost $100 a month off our food bill – without clipping coupons!
This post contains affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here.
These 9 simple tips not only help you save money on food, but they make life easier too! Imagine never stepping into a grocery store again or wondering what you’re going to make for dinner. Let me tell you, it is incredibly freeing!
Okay enough chatting, let’s save some money on groceries!
Groceries on a Budget
This is absolutely my favorite way to save money (and time) at the grocery store. ClickList (available at Kroger stores) has changed the way I shop for food. Simply create your shopping list online and select a time to pick up your food. When you arrive at the store, your groceries are loaded into your car and you’re on your way!
While this service does charge a $5 fee, Fry’s (and other Kroger stores) offer exclusive, high value coupons for ClickList customers only. Last week, I got $15 worth of toilet paper and paper towels for FREE with a ClickList exclusive coupon!
Bonus – If you follow your Kroger store on Facebook, they have coupons for $2 – $3 off your order every week!
Update: I have been getting a lot of questions about the Clicklist service, so let me answer the top two here.
1. Do you tip for ClickList? Answer: No, tipping is not allowed.
2. Does Kroger ClickList cost money? Answer: Yes, the fee is $4.95. However, as I mentioned above, the exclusive coupons you can download more than make up for this fee.
Save Money on groceries with an app! The Ibotta app is an awesome grocery app to get save money on groceries! Before you shop, add offers (like save $.50 on bananas) to your Ibotta account. After your shopping trip, simply snap a photo of your receipt and upload it through the app. Within 48 hours, you will receive cash back for all your qualifying purchases!
Bonus – Right now, get a $10 welcome bonus from Ibotta when you sign up and redeem your first offer! Gotta love free money!
For more info about Ibotta, check out my Complete Ibotta Review
Checkout 51 is another grocery app similar to Ibotta. Download both apps and get even more cash back!
Load Up on Digital Coupons
Before I had my daughter, I would spend hours clipping coupons. They did save us money, but it was such a time consuming chore! Digital coupons make it so much easier to save money on groceries and lots of stores offer them now. Just log onto your store’s website and click the coupons you want. They will be loaded onto your loyalty card and automatically applied at checkout. I love handing my Fry’s card to the cashier and watching total drop lower and lower. It’s a bit of a rush!
Come Up With a Meal Plan
Like I mentioned above, having a meal plan is key to saving money on groceries – plus it makes life a whole lot easier. Over the weekend, come up with a plan for the week and stick to it. Print out the menu planner below and put it on the fridge to keep yourself on track!
Need help coming up with recipes? I LOVE this service! Meal planning can get tedious but this site makes it so easy. Plus you can try it FREE for 14 days!
Make a List and Stick to It
The grocery store is full of delicious temptations, and it’s so easy to throw a few extra treats into the cart. It seems harmless until you’re at the cash register and see just how much those little treats actually cost. This is another reason I love shopping with ClickList. Since you never actually go into the store, it’s much easier to stick to your shopping list and your budget!
Shop Once a Week
If you find yourself heading to the store 3 – 4 times per week, this tip is for you. All those shopping trips can really add up. It takes some prep work, but the best solution is to come up with a meal plan, write out a shopping list, and go to the store ONE time each week. This alone can easily shave $40 off your grocery budget. I definitely did for me!
Stock Up on Sales
Most store offer a few really good deals every week to get people into their store. They often have a limit, but if it’s something your family will eat, stock up as much as you can! Last week, for example, my store had a buy 1 get 2 free deal on chicken thighs. Score! Let me tell you, my freezer is now STUFFED.
Try the Store Brand
I am guilty of being brand loyal – I have my favorites, ya know? But I was spending way to much on some of my favorite brands. For many products, the store brand is just as good and can save you quite a bit in the long run. Give it a try!
Saving money at the grocery store isn’t hard, it just takes some planning. I hope these 9 tips help you save money and maybe even make life a little easier.
Okay, sharing time! Do you have any tips for grocery shopping on a budget? If so, leave a comment below!
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