Saving money on groceries interests me quite a lot! Probably because it’s something we all must do. On a weekly basis, we must decide how to spend our money in order to feed on of our most basic needs: hunger.
You may instinctively think ‘groceries… not a lot of money to be saved there. Buy generic when possible, don’t throw food away, ladedah…’ But actually there are quite a few grocery hacks that can be implemented to save BIG BUCKS over even just the span on a few months. For today’s post, I just want to focus on what exactly you’re buying.
Do you find yourself buying pre-diced, neatly packaged, processed foods? Or do you find yourself buying raw foods to use in recipes? The latter is the way to go. People think buying un-messed with food is expensive but that doesn’t always have to be the case. What you need to do is keep in mind what foods you are buying. Without further ado, here are 20 cheap and healthy grocery items you can buy each week that will save you thousands per year.
- Carrots (Even baby carrots can be reasonably priced – I’ve found them as low as 99 cents for 2 pounds!)
- Potatoes (click here to see what kinds of potatoes are healthiest and keep this in mind.)
- Pasta (I’ve never been disappointed with store brands!)
- Most any kind of bean (My favorites include chick peas, black beans, and refried beans.)
- Fresh foods that are in season (Especially apples, bananas, oranges, strawberries, cherries!)
- Chicken (Dark meat is usually cheaper but it’s less healthy. Personally, paying a tiny bit extra for frozen chicken breasts is worth it)
- Bread (Or better yet – flour! Make your own bread! Plus your house will smell delicious!!!)
- Sale items (Don’t be afraid of coupons!)
- Bulk items (This includes large cuts of meat from the deli as well as big-box stores such as Sam’s Club and Costco.)
- Milk (Often on sale, plus you can buy it in powder form to save even more money.)
- Eggs (Often on sale.)
- Pasta Sauce (Watch out for added sugar! This is a fantastic way to get your veggies! Most brands boast 2 servings of vegetables in each cup of sauce!)
- Yogurt (I always buy in large containers. Single servings can be pretty expensive.)
- Edamame (soybeans)
- Dried Lentils
- Cereal (Find kinds that contain little added sugar.. and no toys IE: keep your hands away from the easy-for-kids-to-reach bottom shelves – that’s where the companies like to put their sugary cereals so kids grab them and beg for them.)
When it comes to the bulk food retailers, I like Costco. They have good prices, outstanding customer service and a great return policy.
Remember that food that’s been processed or made convenient will come at a cost – both to your wallet and often your health. Processed foods take more effort to get to store shelves. That means the manufacturer (yes, manufacturer not grower) will need to charge you more. Healthy foods are often cheap for that reason – they aren’t messed with. All the foods listed above go through very little manipulation before going from field to table.
Another way you can save is by going with a subscription service like Amazon.com’s Subscribe and Save. The neat thing about Subscribe and Save is that you can lock in discounts on typical products you use on a regular basis. Note: Amazon is better for dry goods (like pasta and paper towels) and you’ll need to watch the prices on a monthly basis, but otherwise you can find a saving using this platform.
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