The cost of living crisis has been making headlines and affecting households around the globe. With prices for essential goods increasing faster than household incomes, it has become increasingly difficult for many people to make ends meet.
In this post, we aim to provide you with strategies and tips for cutting your grocery bill during this difficult time.
Our goal is to help you make the most of your grocery budget. With the right approach, it is possible to reduce your bill and make your money go further.
Create a meal plan for the week
Meal planning can be a great way to save money on groceries. By planning meals in advance, you can ensure that you have all the ingredients you need on hand, which reduces the need for last-minute trips to the store.
Start by making a list of meals: Think about what meals you and your family enjoy, and make a list of meals that you can rotate throughout the week.
Make a schedule: Decide what days of the week you will be eating at home and plan your meals accordingly.
Plan for leftovers: Incorporate leftovers into your meal plan for the week. For example, if you are cooking a roast chicken on Monday, you can use the leftovers for a chicken salad or soup on Tuesday.
Another tip is to be flexible when it comes to meal planning, plan meals that can be easily adapted or used in different ways to avoid getting bored and make the most of the ingredients you have.
But don’t worry if you’re stuck for ideas, there are some great cookbooks you could try… here are four to look up.
- Cook Once, Eat fall week: 26 Weeks of Gluten-Free, Affordable Meal Prep to Preserve Your Time & Sanity by Cassy Joy Garcia
- Save with Jamie by Jamie Oliver
- The Busy Mum’s Plan-ahead Cookbook by Sarah Flower
- One Pot: 120+ Easy Meals from Your Skillet, Slow Cooker, Stockpot, and More: A Cookbook by Martha Stewart Living
Create a shopping list
Creating a shopping list before heading to the store is one of the simplest and most effective ways to stay on budget. Having a list of the items you need helps to ensure that you only purchase what you need and reduces the chance of impulse buying.
A list means you can plan which ingredients go together so you can buy what you need to make each meal and avoid unused vegetables going out of date at the bottom of your fridge.
It also makes sure you get everything you need for your meal plan so you can reduce unnecessary trips to the local store during the week.
Buying in bulk
Buying in bulk can be a great way to save money on groceries, especially for non-perishable items such as rice, pasta, cereal, and other pantry staples. Buying in bulk allows you to take advantage of discounts, which can help you save money in the long run.
A good strategy is to compare prices of the items you want to buy in bulk, between different stores. This way you can make sure you’re getting the best deal possible. Supermarket price comparison websites like Trolly and Priceable allow you to compare prices of 1000s of products from the UK’s top supermarkets.
One way to save money on groceries is to buy seasonal produce. Fruits and vegetables that are in season are often cheaper and taste better than those that are out of season.
Additionally, buying seasonal produce helps to support local farmers and reduces the environmental impact of transportation.
When buying seasonal produce, you can check for information about the seasonal calendar for fruits and vegetables, available online or at the local market. The British Dietetic Association have created this handy list which shows which fruit and vegetables are in season in UK.
Buying house brands
Another way to save money on groceries is to buy generic brands. Generic brands are often just as good as their more expensive counterparts and can save you a significant amount of money in the long run.
When shopping for generic brands, it’s a good idea to compare the prices and the ingredients of the products. Sometimes, the difference in price can be insignificant and the ingredients might be the same. It’s also a good idea to read reviews or ask friends and family for recommendations for good generic brands.
Discount stores can be a great resource for saving money on groceries. These stores often offer a wide variety of products at lower prices than traditional retailers. Shopping at discount stores can also help you save money on non-grocery items such as household goods and clothing.
As with other items you buy, it’s important to be mindful of the expiration dates on products and check the products’ quality before purchasing them.
Vouchers and rewards programs
Vouchers and rewards programs can be a great way to save money on your supermarket shop. Many stores offer discounts and other savings opportunities for customers, here are a few from the UK’s largest supermarkets:
Tesco Clubcard: Tesco’s Clubcard program provides customers with access to exclusive deals on groceries and over 100 Reward Partners.
Sainsbury’s Nectar: Sainsbury’s Nectar program rewards customers with points for every pound they spend in-store or online. These points can be spent in-store or online.
My Morrisons: My Morrisons program rewards customers with personalised offers on the things they buy the most.
When using rewards programs, it’s important to read the terms and conditions carefully and to make sure that the offer is still valid before using it.
Tips for avoiding impulse purchases
Impulse purchases can be a major budget-buster, especially when it comes to groceries.
We’ve already talked about the importance of having a list. Another tip is to leave your credit cards at home and to only bring the cash you need to make your purchases, this way you will be more mindful of the spending and avoid impulse purchases.
It is also helpful to wait a moment and think before purchasing an item, asking yourself if you really need the item and if it is worth the money you will spend on it.
Living during a cost-of-living crisis can be tough, especially when it comes to grocery shopping. However, by following the strategies outlined in this post, you can save money on your grocery bill and make your budget stretch further.
It’s important to remember that saving money on groceries takes time and practice, but it’s worth it in the long run. Try incorporating these tips into your grocery shopping routine, and see how much you can save.