Back in September when I started my grocery challenge. I kind of knew how much we spent but never tracked our expenses in too much detail. I figured we had to eat regardless, so as long as we were within a reasonable range (meaning we could afford it!), why would I care? But after reading monthly expense updates on other blogs, I realized we were almost wasting money on groceries. And to save, I didn’t have to change our eating habits, all I had to do was change our planning and shopping habits! 5 Proven Ways to Save Money On Groceries – February 2018 Grocery Budget
So we started implementing a few changes and have been making great progress since. We didn’t reach our ultimate goal yet but getting closer.
Our eating habits haven’t changed much, we still eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, but for less money. We did cut back on snacks and junk food. Overall,
I we are becoming smarter shoppers.
5 Proven Ways to Save Money On Groceries:
When I started this challenge, I posted a list of ways I was going to save money. Several months later, here are the ones that had the most impact on our budget :
- Plan your meals for the week (doesn’t need to be complicated). I always plan for a leftover meal too! Check the sales on Flipp before deciding what to make.
- Make a grocery list and stick to it! I am not kidding, you have to stick to the list!
- Do a quick inventory of what you have at home. That one was big for us, I always thought I knew what was left in the fridge and then we would get home to find out we already had whatever we just bought! And usually perishable products too!
- “Make do” with what you have. Unless I really have to (it happens), I won’t go to the store during the week. The extra trips were a killer for our budget. I would stop on the way home to buy one missing ingredient and would end up buying a lot more!
- Know the price of the food you buy. We spend a large portion of our budget on fruits and vegetables (a lot less now). I thought I was getting great deals at Costco but, once I did the proper conversion (takes a while at first, Costco doesn’t have the price in lbs, most other stores do) I realized we could, sometimes, get better deals elsewhere. Costco is still worth it for us for other products but we buy a minimum amount of produce there now. I always check Flipp for the weekly sales before I go shopping.
Our February Grocery Update:
Our February spending was slightly lower than last month. Slow and steady wins the race! The average per week this month was $249 for ALL groceries and $219 for food only ($950 per month for our family of five – three grown children). My goal remains at $200/week, subject to change of course!
Here is the detailed grocery spending for February (4 weeks from Feb. 3 to March 2):Did I mention I love Excel and charts? Isn’t it pretty? And because a picture is worth a thousand words!
- Vegetables & Fruits: We started doing better in this area as soon as I stopped buying everything at Costco. We get more of a variety now, less waste and we save money.
- Meat/Fish: Just when I thought it couldn’t get higher! We did enjoy salmon, roast beef, cold cuts and Costco sells this amazing chicken salad…what can I say! Have you ever tried it?
- Pets: We bought their food last month so just a few treats this month (yes, we buy them treats!)
- Snack & crackers: We bought extra boxes of Oats & Honey bars on sale, we shouldn’t have to buy any in March. My son went to a few “chill” parties so we bought several large bags of chips for him to bring over.
- Frozen food: This month is back to normal.
- Baking goods: Stocked up on gluten-free flour. I only bake gluten-free goodies so my daughter (she is Celiac) never feels left out, but it is more expensive.
- Household: We stocked up last month but still needed more toilet paper! Sometimes I really wonder what the kids do with it!!! Do you have that problem too? We also had to buy Drano…for the toilet! Just kidding:) The shower was plugged. Oh, and my partner likes to use Downy softener, I think it is a waste of money but I try to keep him happy. Still $80 for household products, seems like a lot!
Over To You, How Do You Save Money On Groceries:
Have you ever tried and successfully reduced your grocery spending? How much were you able to save? What worked best for you? Is there anything you tried, you wouldn’t recommend? How much do you spend on groceries on average each month?
You can find all my previous monthly grocery reports here.
If you like going thru monthly expense/food budget reports, here are a few others you should check out:
- Justin at Root of Good feeds a family of five with only $296…for the entire month!
- Mr. Tako Escapes February report
- Lily’s February 2018 Report over at The Frugal Gene.
- Kris over at Chronicles of a Father with Cents