1.) Plan Ahead – If you plan your meals you are going to save a lot of money. You can plan around the sales and not have the last-minute worry of what you are going to feed your family.
2.) Plan for late night emergency dinners – You know those nights that you are running way behind and you are completely exhausted. That’s the night that you reach for a pizza menu or pick-up fast food on the way home. If you have emergency dinners in your freezer you can avoid that panicked feeling and the high cost of delivery or take-out. My favorite last-minute meals are lasagna, soup, sandwiches, frozen pizza (half the price of delivery!), and stuffed baked potatoes.
3.) Shop the Sales – The front and back of the grocery ad are the items that the store is losing the most money on. Always buy meat on sale!
4.) Consider the last-minute mark downs. – If you shop on a weekly basis you can save a lot on the last-minute mark downs. Some of the things that you can save on are yogurt, meat, bread, bakery items, and cheese. Be careful to check your purchases over thoroughly. Unless you really know what you are doing be careful with fish. Fruits and vegetables can be tricky as well. Portobello mushrooms if cooked will be fine on their sell by date but salad mix might look gross. If you see meat that is on clearance, check the sell by date and the packaging. If the sell by date has not past and the package is in good condition then you consider the look of the meat. If the color is off than put it back. If it passes these tests then you consider the price. Is the price lower than a comparable cut that is on sale? Buy the one that is cheaper by the pound. This check-off method is the one I use for everything I buy on mark down.
5.) Coupons – Last but not least, use grocery coupons for anything you are going to buy any way. Do not buy things simply because you have a coupon if you will not use the item. You save nothing by throwing things away! I personally make out my list, go through the sales, and then go through my coupons to find any that match.