& Save Money
Keep your family healthy without breaking the bank
So many people think that eating healthy has to be crazy expensive and it really doesn’t! We have found that not only is it possible to eat healthy as a family, it is fun and actually saves us money!
Plan A Little, Save A Lot
There are many different ways to maximize your money spent on healthy food. Once we started to see the savings with buying healthier, we realized with a little planning and effort we could hack it and optimize our weekly trips even more! It is important to only buy the items that you really need rather than impulsively throwing everything you see in the cart, as a general rule. We found that coming up with a very rough idea of what we want to eat for the week and listing what ingredients are needed, we found that there were many things we didn’t actually need to purchase again. Also, sometimes specific fancy meals we wanted needed so many different ingredients that we rarely used, that we optimized them to use alternatives that were already in the house. So, plan what you want to eat and list what it will take to eat those things. Whether you are trying to be more healthy in the kitchen, more efficient with meal planning or just plain save money, here are some more ideas to keep to your budget when going to the grocery store….
Set a semi-flexible budget limit that is feasible for your needs-and stick to it.
Bring the budgeted amount in CASH and a backup card/extra cash of course just in case you crazy underestimate your calculations.
Calculate your total as you go! It’s really quick to add a number in your phone for each item.
To give a cushion for staying in budget, round bulk items up to what’s easy to calculate in your head, such as $1.48 up to $1.50 or $2.00, then round the weigh up to a whole number. (1.73 lbs @ $1.48 could be calculated as 2 lbs X $2.00)
If you want to be extra safe or attempt to factor in sales tax, you can round every item up to the nearest dollar when you’re calculating. We tend to do this and come out pretty close to our lowest budgeted number most trips!
Get Seriously Serious About It
Leave your calculator on with just the running total… and regularly repeat it in your head as you add each item (can’t tell you how many times I have lost my total mid-trip!!!)
On that note, remember not to play too much on your phone or compulsively close your apps… you can lose your total and end up either going over or leaving out items you could’ve gotten.
Try one of those grocery list apps, if that makes it easier for you. They’re very comprehensive and some even have ads from local stores to help you find the best deals!
Be sure to take into consideration all household items you include in your “grocery” budget and make a list to remember! For example, we include paper towels, plastic wrap, garbage bags, foil, toiletries and baby items in our “grocery budget”
Realize that this pre-set budget number could vary greatly based on what you need that trip, how big your household is and what your food intake is, so give yourself a cushion.
Be reasonable with your set limit and goals. If you’ve set a limit of $120-150, aim to stay as close to the lower number as possible.
If you find a great deal on something and want to stock up, or by the time you reach checkout realize you’ve underestimated the total cost of your items (bulk section trail mix, I am looking at you….) you will likely still be able to stay within the budget.
Consider cutting out “optional” items if you are getting close to your limit to avoid going over. (ahem… cookie dough and ice cream…)
Consider using a coupon app for a club-card that you may have at a store. E-coupons are becoming more common and are really nice if all you have to do is scan your card or input your phone number at checkout! I’ll be honest-you’ll likely never hear of me using a paper coupon in store.
Depending on your spending habits, consider using a cashback app which you later record your purchases and eventually redeem cash. In my experience, the only one worth my time is iBotta, and even then it is hit or miss.
I love to find a deal but I also enjoy some of the staples and don’t sacrifice brands on every level. Like Starbucks, Peet’s or Boyd’s. We don’t buy off brand coffee, we’ve learned our lesson-no compromises here.
Keep Some Things
Make It Work For You
At the end of the day, you have to make your grocery budget work for you, not against you. If you know that you are going to be way happier with an extra $50/week for those random extras that you love, don’t sacrifice! Find other ways to save money if you need to, there are soooo many!
Also, sometimes you just need a little extra help to keep exciting healthy meals on the table, and it is worth every penny! We love Green Chef for a quick & healthy meal that is new and exciting, with all ingredients pre-portioned and delivered to our door! For a limited time, you can save $50 off of your 1st order with this link! We love how easy their recipes are, and the kids have so much fun making them. Can you believe they were excited to eat their veggies when they got to be the ones to make them?!
How do you hack your grocery budget without compromising what you love?
Until next time friends,
P.O. Box 724 Ellenwood, GA 30294
Talk to me here: