When trying to save money, people can skimp on shopping for clothes, shoes and other non-essential stuff from the mall. We can go without a gym membership or movie dates. But we can never go without food. Since we all have to eat, there’s really no way you can skip a trip to the grocery store when running out of supplies. 

While food takes up a huge chunk on our budget, you might be wondering if there’s any cheap way to feed your family.

The good news is yes, there are several ways to save on groceries and food! Take a look at the following money-saving tips to trim down your spending when doing grocery shopping.

Plan ahead

Saving on groceries starts before you even set foot inside the store. Plan ahead. If you are the spontaneous type when buying groceries, know that it’s not going to work if you’re trying to save. 

Create a daily menu so that you know exactly what ingredients and food items to buy. Make meal plans especially for when you’re home, like dinner time. Not only will this help you stick to your budget but it will also keep you from going out to buy food or calling for delivery.

Create a list

Besides the food items you’ll be buying from the grocery store, you will also need to purchase other stuff you’d need at home. And the best way to keep yourself from spending more than you need to is by creating a list. A grocery list will help keep you focused on the things that are only “needed”. 

Imagine walking through aisles in the store without a list to refer to. Not only would you end up buying things you’ll realize aren’t necessary. You might even find yourself leaving the store with an empty wallet. 

Buy in-season produce

Trying to save on food and groceries doesn’t mean skimping on healthy food choices. Fresh produce can be expensive but there’s a trick you can use – stick to fruits and vegetables that are in season. 

For instance, what fruits are in season in November and December? Grapes? Pear? Pineapple? These fruits are less expensive during these months than they are during the rest of the year. Try to plan meals around these produce items to save money without compromising health

Use coupons

If you aren’t a fan of using coupons when grocery-shopping, now’s the best time to start utilizing them. Coupons can help you save some serious cash. The savings per coupon may seem very little but they add up when combined together. 

However, it’s also important to take note that caution should be exercised when using coupons. When not careful, they can get you to spend more by buying things you don’t need or getting more expensive brands. It’s still best to stick to a grocery list when shopping. This will keep you from buying items that are not necessary.

Shop at budget-friendly stores

Who says you can no longer save after using up all your coupons? Instead of doing groceries at your usual pricey store, maybe it’s time to take a trip to budget-friendly stores. A lot of stores offer items with generally lower prices. Some have relatively cheaper retail prices while others offer regular discounts. 

Buy what you need

This may be the most important technique anyone who’s trying to save money on groceries should never miss. Although truth be told, this may also be the most difficult to implement. 

With too many seemingly delicious and attractive food items, it’s easy to be tempted to splurge when shopping for groceries. This is where restraint becomes crucial. Again, go back to your list, be in control and resist the temptation to purchase things that aren’t on the list. It won’t be easy, especially if you’re not used to sticking to a shopping list. But impulse buys can increase your bill by up to 30%, on average. So if you’re looking to save money on groceries, it’s time to cultivate good shopping habits

Good quality and healthy food isn’t something anyone should skimp on. However, it doesn’t mean that you have to be unwise in your saving. And if you’ve decided to start saving on groceries, using this guide would be a good start.

Looking into building and growing your savings? Please visit Calcite Credit Union.