One of the things that has really changed about the way I live my life since having kids is grocery shopping. My mom would say that my refrigerator was too empty before I had kids–now it overflows and I have to do a “cull” week where I only make from what we have sometimes, just to make room for the next week’s food. LOL! So, I spend a lot. A lot, a lot. On groceries. But I need to stop that–and something just happened to make doing that so much easier. I discovered these 17 Easy Hacks to Save Money Grocery Shopping (even for gluten-free and organic foods) and an ALDI just opened near me. Coincidence? I don’t think so. LOL!
17 Easy Hacks to Save Money Grocery Shopping
- Start by shopping at ALDI. Seriously. In all honesty–scout’s honor and all that, I spent $53 when I would have spent $100 at my previous “regular” grocery store. So. Much. Cheaper. And I am not really sure why, because the food is high quality and this store is an awesome experience (the store manager helped me at one point to find a product and the checker was so sweet, helping me while I wrangled my two toddlers–awesome experience all the way).
- Make a list. And don’t deviate.
- Don’t go hungry. And don’t take hungry kids, either–that’s the worst.
- Buy ALDI in-store brands, if available. Which is easy since something like 90% of products carried by ALDI are in-store brands. There’s even alternative foods available exclusively at ALDI for gluten-free and/or organic choices like their SimplyNature® and liveGfree® lines. High quality stuff, just for less cost.
- Check the pantry before you go. Remember that list–this is where you start it.
- Plan your meals. And only buy what you need to make those meals.
- Shop in-season fruits and veggies. Watermelons are cheaper in summer…FYI. Heh.
- Plan to preserve. Like by dehydrating watermelon…it can be done. And it’s delicious.
- Think about using choice staples more often. Like beans or carrots. You can get those very cheaply fairly regularly and if you can make one of those as a side two or three times a week, that cuts down on what you might have spent on out-of-season veggies.
- Check shelf-life of foods. So, typically, coconut milk has a longer shelf life than cow’s milk. And brown rice doesn’t last as long as white rice.
- Learn to turn cheap cuts of meat into awesome. It can be done.
- Buy meat bone-in. It’s cheaper. And just as yummy.
- Take your time. Don’t rush–you don’t make good decisions about anything when you rush.
- Compare sizes. Often, even with a cheaper price tag, generic items contain more product by weight, than the name-brand. Buy more for less money? Yes, please.
- Try to shop once a week or less. Fewer opportunities for impulse buying.
- Buy ALDI grocery bags ONE time. They’re WAAAAY cheaper than buying those expensive reusable bags available elsewhere and they last just as long without tearing or losing shape.
- Allow yourself a limited number of impulse buys. I cap myself at either a dollar figure or a number. If I know I can spend $55, then I only spend $53 on groceries–I can get that other box of cookies I saw on aisle 5 that I really don’t need (but want anyway–heh).
I know a lot of these hacks revolve around ALDI–but they’re seriously a money-saving-hack all in their own right. And they’re expanding. ALDI has already opened 25 stores in the Southern California area. So, they’re coming…and soon, if they’re not already in your neighborhood.
What would you add to my 17 Easy Hacks to Save Money Grocery Shopping? Maybe some tips on how to make your own grocery bags out of beat-up ones??? I’d love to do that sometime (been thinking about that for a while). Let me know what you’d add…just drop a comment below or find me on Facebook!