In a previous post we discussed budget saving techniques that can help you and your family eat well for less. Today were going to talk about seven more simple ways you can slash your grocery budget in tough economic times.
Use basic ingredients to make scrumptious meals. Much of the worlds population manages to create delicious and nutritious meals for a fraction of the cost of most American meals. They’ve learned to turn cheap basic ingredients like potatoes, beans, rice, squash, and corn into delicious, nutritious meals.
You can do the same. Use cheap basic ingredients to create food that your family will enjoy. Take a look at cookbooks like More-With-Less Cookbook and Alice Waters The Art of Simple Food for great recipes on budget prices.
Find an Aldis near you. If you havent visited an Aldis supermarket recently then you’re missing out on a savings bonanza. This no-frills grocery store tightly controls costs, passing the huge savings on to you.
Store sizes are typically smaller saving on heating and energy costs. Selection is more limited than a typical grocery store saving on inventory costs. Store hours are generally restricted to 9am-9pm helping save money as well.
Additionally, Aldis features its lines of high quality store brand products. Aldis claims that you can save 40-50% at Aldis compared to conventional grocery stores and 16-24% over big discount stores.
Forget instant and convenience foods. Many instant foods are not that much more convenient than their conventional counterparts, but their costs can be significantly higher.
Instant oatmeal, for example, takes almost as long to cook as regular oatmeal but can be twice as expensive. You can easily save money by buying and cooking conventional rice instead of the more expensive boil-in-a-bag version.
Instead of buying pudding in those cute little plastic cups, make you own quickly and cheaply by purchasing boxed pudding mixes. Skip shredded cheese and save money instead by purchasing blocks of cheese and grating them yourself.
Buy frozen instead of fresh. Out-of-season produce can put a crimp into any budget. Instead of paying those high prices take a walk over to the frozen food section and pick up frozen fruits and vegetables. According to a recent University of California at Davis research study, by the time food is consumed, fresh, frozen, and canned fruits and vegetables may be nutritionally similar.”
Use smaller plates. Americans, unlike many of our foreign counterparts, tend to rely on external cues to determine when we’ve had enough to eat. This is one of the reasons for the explosion of obesity and dramatic increase in childhood diabetes.
One of the most common external cues is plate size. We tend to eat until we’ve finished our plates. The only problems is that over the years our plates have become super-sized. In the past 10.5 inch plates were common. Now 12.5 inch plates are commonly used.
You can save money simply by switching to smaller sized plates. Your family will get their proper nourishment and most likely not even notice that you served them 30% less food simply by changing plate sizes.
Buy juice concentrates. You can save 30-40% off your juice costs simply by buying frozen fruit concentrates. Remember, when you buy cartons and jugs of juice you’re paying in part to process, package, and transport the large amount of water that makes up most juice.
Take frozen concentrates home and add your own water to create the same nutritious drinks you would have paid much more for if you had bought by the carton.
Take advantage of bakery outlets. Bakery outlets are great places to get great deals on bread and other products. Typically you’ll pay 50-75% less than the store price.
All of the products are fresh, but are generally placed in the outlet because their sell-by dates are approaching, usually within a few days to a few weeks. Savvy shoppers stock up at bakery outlets and then freeze the bread and other products they will not use immediately, providing them with a steady supply of cheap, fresh bread.