Grocery Shopping- Getting the Most Bang for Your Buck!
Anyone who knows me well knows that I love saving money. I get such a high from walking out of the grocery store with a cart full of health food for a low price. I used to be an “extreme couponer” when I was in high school and during my first year of college, but I have not been as extreme with using coupons as of late. I mostly used extreme couponing to help my family reduce the cost of their grocery bill. There aren’t too many coupons for most of the foods I eat (fresh produce, meat, potatoes, etc.) so I do not take my couponing to extremes anymore.
A little bit more on what I classify as “extreme couponing”. I used to get paid to grocery shop. There was a time that I brought my sisters with me to the store and we made over $60 from grocery shopping and treated ourselves to dinner. There were also many times that I would pay less than $1 and countless times that I would slash the grocery bill in half by just using coupons. While extreme couponing does take up a lot of time and may not be feasible for most people (like a busy college student like myself), I am going to give you some tips on how to stick to a tight budget while also eating healthy!
Top 3 tips for eating healthy on a budget
1. Make a list/ Review the Store Circular before Shopping
This is a must do when trying to stick to a budget. If you write a list and plan your meals around foods that are on sale, grocery shopping will be much easier. I always review the sales flyer and see what the best deals are that week. However, if there is something at the store that is a good price that was not advertised in their flyer, I will still pick it up.
2. Be Flexible!
This has really come in handy for me when I moved into my own apartment because I began to realize that some of my favorite fruits/veggies are not on sale year round. I love berries but am I going to pay $5 for a carton of strawberries or blueberries? Heck no! So, I learned to be flexible and buy the fruits and vegetables that are on sale in a given week. If mangoes and broccoli is on sale one week, that will definitely be purchased.
3. Use Coupons
This one seems like a no-brainer, yet so many people never use coupons because they think that it is too much of a hassle. Using coupons for products that you already buy can be a huge money saver! There are sites that I use such as coupons.com, mambrosprouts.com (healthy & organic coupons), and wholefoods.com (coupons for whole foods only). Taking 20 minutes or so each week to print and cut coupons will save you tons of money in the long run! The key is to not buy things just because you have a coupon for it (unless you can get it for free of course).
This is an example of what I used to get when grocery shopping for my family. I remember purchasing all of this for around $15. There were over 100 gatorades, lunchmeat, over 6 shampoos, bread, fruit, plus more in this haul.
To give you an idea of how I save money and eat healthy, I am including one of my most recent visits to the grocery store. Here is a breakdown of what I got.
1 carton eggs – .99 cents
2 containers blackberries 1.98 (99 cents each)
1 honeydew melon- 1.69
grape tomatoes- 1 pint- 1.99
11 bananas 1.10 (10 cents each)
1.44 lbs pears (5 small pears)- 1.43
1 bag frozen edamame – $2.49
2.58 lbs apples – $2.55
4 fresh pickles – 40 cents (10 cents each)
1.22 lbs green peppers (3 green peppers)
.5 lbs bean sprouts- .49 cents
1.2 lb broccoli- .83 cents
6 red potatoes- .60 cents
5 pack garlic – 1.49
10 navel oranges $1 (10 cents each)
2 red onions .96 cents
fresh ginger – .19 cents
2 1 lb bags carrots 1.50 (.75 cents each)
5 lemons, 5 limes – $1 – .10 cents each
10 small fancy zucchini (teeny tiny) – $1 (10 cents each)
3 cucumbers – 1.49
green onion knob -.65 cents
1.11 lb sweet potatoes (2 large)- .88 cents
Grand total price with tax: $27.65
I got at least 2 weeks worth of produce for myself for only $ 27.65
There were many great deals this week so I stocked up! I usually shop biweekly so that I don’t have to go back to the grocery store too much. Usually I can get 2 weeks of produce from anywhere as low as $20 to up to $40 depending on the sales. I highly suggest finding a market that has a ginormous produce section because there will be better deals there!
Do you use coupons?
How do you save money on your grocery bill?
Let me know if the comments!