Thursday, June 27, 2013

Think It Thursday: Making the Most of a Budget

I consider myself quite savvy when it comes to my bi-weekly grocery budget. I manage to feed 5 on roughly about $300. of course that includes all toiletries, paper products & diapers. No, I'm not an extreme couponer. Actually, I use far less coupons during the summer months as compared to the winter months.

Here's how:

•Plan out a menu & then make your shopping list. This will ensure two things, that you have everything you need for a meal already on hand & you won't be making a last minute shopping trip (no doubt grabbing more items than you intended).

•Stock up on sales. This doesn't mean you have to buy 20 boxes of spaghetti, but a few are always good to have on hand. Also, watch for sales on meat this time of year (it is grill season after all).

•Plant a garden or shop for local produce. Not only will you save money, but you'll eat healthier too.

•Outlet shop. We get all of our bread from the bakery outlet & all of our chips/pretzels from the local potato chip factory outlet. I pay the same price as a bag of chips in the store, for anywhere between a 3-5 lb. bag. 

•Buy in bulk. No I don't necessarily mean a big chain like Sam's Club, but a basic bulk food store if you have one available. We go to one nearby that I get all of my spices & deli meats/cheese from (I'm talking a little over $3.00 for smoked turkey breast!) We also get some snack items, the occasional produce & honey there.

•Don't be afraid to go to multiple stores. On our normal Saturday shopping day, I go to 8 different stores/markets. Of course we have a plan of attack that way there's no wasted gas.

•Re-invent your meals. Cook a big chicken? Shred what's left & have BBQ chicken sandwiches. Rice? make a burrito. Corn? How about some chowder? (I'm making myself hungry!)

•try your hand at homemade. I make my own yogurt & pita bread weekly & seem to always be whipping up something from scratch. But I also make lots of my cleaning supplies & laundry necessities from a handful of ingredients.



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