Maybe you’re trying to put more money in savings.
Maybe you’re a broke college student and you’re tired of eating Ramen.
Maybe you’re going through a difficult time financially and you need to cut back on spending.
Maybe you’d rather spend that extra $$$ on some new clothes!
Whatever your reason is, chances are you’d probably like to lower your weekly grocery bill. I’ve been there- Heck, I am there!
My husband and I have been trying to cut back spending in certain areas and see where we can find extra money for savings (down payments are expensive, y’all!).
Before I started following these tips, I would easily spend $120/$150 a week on groceries. Now, if I ever need to, I can get by with only spending $200 a month on food! Below I am sharing my 5 tips to spend only $50 a week on groceries!
1. Finding the Right Store
Okay, so whenever I think about shopping within a budget, I immediately think of Walmart. I mean, don’t we all? Where else is it acceptable to shop in your PJs? It must be the cheapest place to buy food, right?
Walmart’s food can actually be pretty expensive!
Using the exact same shopping list, my grocery bill has been $30 more a week when I have to shop at Walmart. So where do I shop?
If you have an Aldi near you and you haven’t been yet, you’re missing out!
How is Aldi cheaper?
One week Avocados were 0.79 at Walmart. At Aldi? 0.49. When you purchase several avocados a week, that adds up!
Milk at Walmart? $2.49. Aldi? $1.19.
Once I started shopping at Walmart, my overall grocery bill went down without me having to change anything else!
I will say, there are a few downsizes of Aldi that aren’t really a big deal if you adapt to them. First, you have to have a quarter to use a shopping cart. Once you’re done, you get your quarter back. To solve this problem, I have my “Aldi quarter” I keep in a separate pocket of my purse and just reuse it every time I need to go. Second, you need to buy brown paper bags to bag your groceries (six cents a piece) or bring your own reusable ones. Lastly, sometimes they might not have everything you’re looking for. I’ve solved this problem by simply avoiding different recipes that have ingredients that I know I won’t find at Aldi.
2. What Do You Already Have?
A second way that I am able to save money in my grocery budget is to look at what I already have and make meals around those items. Before I make my grocery list for the week, I search the kitchen for items of food that haven’t been eaten yet. Do I have half a bag of egg noddles sitting in the cupboard? I’ll look up recipes I can make that incorporate egg noodles. Do I have tomatoes that might go bad soon? We’re having BLTs for dinner one night! How about that bag of rice you haven’t touched in months? Make a rice and chicken soup!
Does that make sense?
I am able to really save money by using up food items that I’ve already purchased. This is also wonderful because I always know what I have in my inventory and I’m not wasting money by throwing things out that I purchased months ago that have already expired.
3. Make A Weekly Menu
Although this seems like a no brainer, I bet a lot of people don’t follow this as closely as they could! Keeping a weekly menu is great because you are less likely to stray away from your list at the grocery store and more likely to buy things you’ll actually eat. Before I used to do this, I would keep in mind a few recipes that I wanted to make, and then just throw items into my cart that I might want for lunch one day or something. If you plan out every single meal for the whole week, you already know exactly what you’ll need and you’ll be less likely to buy food that you;ll end up not eating!
Luckily for you, I’ve made some seasonal menu downloads that you can print off and put in a cheap frame from he dollar tree. Keep an erasable marker close by and do your planning at the beginning of the week!
My mom made me one and gave it to me after I got married. At first, it seemed a little extra, but I use it every single week!
4. Plan For Leftover Night
As a kid, I hated leftovers. They seemed to boring and to be fair, my family waited HOURS sometimes before putting them away and they seemed a little questionable two or three days later.
If you do it right, leftovers can really help cut down your grocery bill! I account for at least one leftover night a week and don’t buy anything for the meal. 9/10 times we’ve got a pan of something leftover that we can heat up with a side of easy veggies or something and are able to save a lot of money!
What if there are no leftovers? If this ever happens THEN my husband and I will justify eating out at a cheap restaurant. I would say this happens about once a month, so it’s not too damaging to our finances…Especially since I follow the other steps in this list and bring my weekly grocery bill down anyway.
5. Shop With Cash
This one is not very fun, but it helps so much. If I’m being honest, I don’t do this one as much as I should! Using cash on a weekly basis for grocery shopping is a great way to lower your grocery bill. When we use cash, our brains are able to visualize the money we are spending so much better.
Whenever I use my debit card, an extra ten dollars doesn’t seem that bad. But when I have to break an extra twenty just to pay for some ice cream and an extra pizza, it suddenly doesn’t seem worth it and I am more likely to leave unnecessary items off the list.
I hope you enjoyed reading these tips and I hope that they help you save some money this week!
Do you have any extra tips you’d like to share? I’d love to hear about them in the comment section below!