Quick Tips on Reducing Food Costs
Thanks to Hampton Creek Inc for this guest post today!
After shelter and insurance, food is one of a consumer’s biggest expenses. This includes food eaten at home as well as dining out. There are many factors that contribute to the amount a person spends on food such as the size of family and age of children, but, in some cases, single people spend more than a family of four mainly because they eat out a lot and buy more processed food. In today’s fast-paced society, there may not be time for everyone to make meals from scratch, but there are companies that offer healthy options such as Hampton Creek Inc. to make home cooking easier.
How to Reduce Food Costs?
The first step towards eating well for less is to reduce the amount of food you order from take-out including designer coffee and water. These expenses may not seem like much at the time, but if you add up what you spend in a month, you may be surprised. You can make your own delicious coffee at home and carry it in a drinkable thermos and the same goes for water. Invest in a water filter for you tap, and carry a refillable water bottle. You’ll not only save money, you’ll help save the environment.
Use Your Freezer
Freezing food is not only good for saving leftovers or premade meals, it is also a good way to extend the life of some foods. For example, you can grate scraps of cheese and freeze it a container to use later over toast, lasagna or pizza. Don’t worry about separating different types of cheese. Just grate it and freeze it all together.
Milk can also be frozen in small portions. You’ll never throw away milk that is passed its use-by date again. Bread is another item that you may buy or make regularly but not use all of a loaf. Frozen bread thaws in minutes and can be toasted or made into grilled cheese sandwiches with the cheese you have frozen.
Change Your Shopping Habits
It’s easy when you are tired at the end of the day to go into a grocery store and buy what looks good. However, the stores know their customers aren’t very careful at certain times and actually stock items to attract the eye. If you have the time to look at each item, you can still save money, but shopping for vegetables and fruits in a local market may save you a lot. The best time to go is in the late afternoon or evening when the stallholders want to get rid of that day’s veggies. This will also help you buy produce that is in season. Out-of-season fruits and veggies have a big carbon footprint and a big price tag.
It also costs less to buy the staples you often use in bulk. Items such as toilet paper, laundry soap, dishwashing detergent and any food items that you are sure to use before the sell-by date will be much cheaper in bulk than when bought item by item. This means you need to have a place to store these items, but you can be a bit creative and combine toilet paper with your clothing and mustard in the back of your kitchen pans. You don’t have to change what you buy, you just need to change how you buy.
If it is not feasible to change how you shop, you might consider signing up for customer rewards at the grocery store where you usually shop. If you haven’t done this already, you may find that you save money every time you shop. The store will send you special discounts and money off you next purchase. If you don’t want these emails arriving in your inbox, create another account just for shopping specials. This doesn’t take much effort and may give big rewards.
A few extra shopping tips:
- Never go grocery shopping when you are hungry. Everything will look good and you will most likely buy more than you planned.
- Make a list and stick to it. You should know what you need in advance and purchase only that. If you see a special or something that looks interesting, you can buy it, but you shouldn’t go into a grocery store with an open mind.
- Buy lower on the food chain. Dried beans that you soak overnight and cook the next day are much cheaper than canned beans.
- Always have rice and frozen veggies in your kitchen. Combined with a few spices, these make a fast, cheap and tasty meal.
- Store potatoes in a cool, dark place in a paper bag or container that allows moisture to escape. If they are in the dark, they won’t sprout and will keep for up to a month.
Many people cut their energy bills by changing the light bulbs, and plugging leaks in their windows, doors, and ducts, but they don’t realize that they may be able to save hundreds of dollars every month by slightly modifying the way they eat. With these few simple tips, you’ll be able to save for that perfect vacation.
What are some of your favorite super simple tips for saving on groceries?
This blog post is sponsored.