The Pay At Home Parent

How To Save Money Grocery Shopping When You’re Out Of Ideas

save money on groceries

Whether you’re shopping for an army (aka large family) or just for yourself, there are many ways to save money on groceries.

We’ll talk about how to save money on groceries with and without coupons, shop in bulk for large families, and use your phone to seek out the best deals while on the go.

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save money grocery shopping

First, you may wonder how I would know anything about grocery shopping hacks that you might now know. Well, growing up in a family of 11 kids might answer your doubts.

When I was young, my mom routinely shopped in bulk for our huge family of 13. Although we never all lived under that same roof at the same time, there were always a lot of mouths to feed (3 meals per day).

Now that most of us are grown and married, we often visit for meals. It’s not uncommon for my mom to prepare meals for more than 24 people at one time!

So as you can imagine, I still learn ways so save money on groceries from my mom to this day. It would be silly for me to waste her discount shopping wisdom!

Related: 7 Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget From Moms Like You!

How To Save Money On Groceries For A Large Family

Like I said before, even if you don’t have a large family to grocery shop for, that doesn’t mean you can’t learn a lot from the way large families shop! Take note of these ways to save money on groceries so that you can stay within your food budget with ease.

1. Save money on groceries app

Did you know there are a handful of mobile phone apps that will help you save money on groceries while on the go? No, my mom didn’t use a save money on groceries app in the 90’s, but if she could’ve, she would’ve!

Download all 4 of these and get to know them a little. They are easy to use and will really help as you work on saving money grocery shopping! You’ll also earn some nice signup bonuses just for using the apps (they are all free).

Best grocery saving app list:

  1. Ibotta – get a $10 signup bonus! Earn cash back for submitting receipts, linking a loyalty card or making purchases through the app.
  2. Shopkick – earn points or “kicks” toward free gift cards just for walking into stores, scanning products on the shelves and submitting your receipts through the app.
  3. Ebates – get a $10 bonus signup bonus! Earn cash back shopping online or link a card to earn cash back in store.
  4. Raise – get a $5 signup bonus! Buy discounted gift cards to use at your favorite stores.

2. Buy in bulk

Whether you have a large family or not, it usually pays to buy in bulk. If you’re on a tight, week-by-week budget, then you might not be able to go out and buy everything in bulk tomorrow, but if you plan ahead, you can save a lot of money this way.

For example, you might find that peanut butter is on buy 1 get 1 half off sale but you don’t need peanut butter until next month. If you can plan ahead for sales like these and train yourself to watch for them, you can really save money if you buy more than one food item of the same type at a time!

Buying in bulk was one of the #1 ways we saved money on groceries growing up.

3. Buy store brand

If you’re on a tight budget, then it’s probably time to venture away from name brand items and get to know your store’s brand. You may not be able to buy store brand everything but start testing the waters bit-by-bit.

Over the years, we’ve found certain store brand foods that we enjoy just as much as the name brand items. You can really save a lot of money on groceries when you purchase store brand as often as possible.

4. Visit more than one grocery store

As a child I was slightly bitter at my mom for dragging us to more than one grocery store when she took some of us shopping with her. But now I completely understand why she chose to shop at more than one grocery store in the same day.

If you get too comfortable shopping at one store only, you fail to keep that store honest with their pricing. Shopping for the lowest prices at different stores helps drive prices back down when they start to get out of line.

5. Meal plan

You might wonder how meal planning plays a part in saving money on groceries, but bear with me – it does!

If you go to the store without a few days worth of meals planned, then you will end up purchasing groceries that go to waste. More often than not, you probably find yourself using up the bits and pieces of food before it goes to waste, but you won’t need to scramble to make that happen if you plan your meals ahead for the week.

6. Get accustomed to chicken

For many, meat is the biggest expense when grocery shopping. Meat is something that most families don’t want to go without!

To avoid overspending on meats each shopping trip, try experimenting with the cheaper meat options in your area. For us, chicken is our go-to meat when we’re trying not to spend too much money.

If it’s the same for you, then start researching chicken recipes and branch out! You might find some fantastic meal ideas that will keep the family from complaining because you’re serving chicken three meals in a row.

7. Go hunting

This might sound funny, but if you or a family member once enjoyed hunting, consider pulling out the gear! My husband hunts each year and we almost always have a freezer full of venison. We especially enjoy substituting ground venison for ground beef, and it really save a lot of money in the long run.

You can also hunt for small game like rabbits and squirrels or fowl like turkey and geese. Just be sure to check your locations laws on hunting before venturing out!

8. Make a list

Believe it or not, having a list in hand while you grocery shop can save you money (and time). By having a prewritten checklist, you’re ensuring that you stick to your allotted budget for that shopping trip.

Having a list goes hand in hand with meal planning for the week. Make sure to do both at the same time to make your life easier!

9. Eat before you shop

It may sound funny, but make sure to have a snack (or meal) before you go grocery shopping. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked out of the grocery store with far more groceries than I needed just because I was hungry.

It’s much easier to stay on track with your grocery list when you’ve eaten before heading out to shop.

10. Cut coupons

Grocery shopping with coupons is definitely not my favorite thing to do, and you can often find the same or better deals with an app like Ibotta or Shopkick.

But if you’re not ready to put your smartphone to use as you grocery shop, then cutting coupons might be the way to go. Either subscribe to receive the paper in the mail or ask a friend or family member if you can go through their coupons after they’ve had a chance to look through them.

11. Stop buying “just because”

How many times do you purchase something at the grocery store just because you’re there and see it?

Probably often.

When you’re on a tight budget, it’s important to shop with intention. Don’t buy a food item from the middle of the aisle displays or from eye level just because it’s what you see first. Those items will almost always be the worst deals.

Save Money Grocery Shopping Today

Now that you know my 11 ways to save money grocery shopping, you can start implementing them on your next trip to the grocery store!

How do you like to save money on groceries? Let me know in the comments!

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