How to Save for the Family's Food Budget

How to Save for the Family's Food Budget

With these secrets you’ll learn how to save for your family's food budget.


By: Alejandra C.

If there’s one thing I remember about my grandmother it is the amazing ability she had to stretch her food budget — she was frugal with her money. I remember that she cooked in large quantities, she made a detailed list before going shopping and she prepared dishes on par with recipes found in international cookbooks. It's never too late to start saving, especially if you a have a big purchase pending or you're about to take a trip, or if you just want to reduce your spending. My grandma used to say: “Save now so you'll always have it for a rainy day." Here are some tips to stretch your food budget.

1. Grow your own produce. If you have a garden, no matter the size, you can grow some of your own fruits, vegetables and herbs. Even if you live in an apartment as I do, right in the center of New York City, you can begin by planting in pots right on your balcony. I've done it and I love it! This will help you save on your supermarket shopping, as well as help you enjoy high quality produce.

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2. Buy more whole grains and pasta. Lentils, chickpeas, beans and whole grain pasta are healthy and low-cost choices. You can prepare a variety of nutritious soups by using beans and adding potatoes. Or you can prepare great pasta dishes by adding some canned tuna fish, any type of sauce, or some butter and cheese.

3. Closely examine your lifestyle. If you are someone who lives a hectic life and you don't have a lot of time for cooking, your best bet is to buy frozen foods. Instead of buying fresh fruits and vegetables, opt for the frozen varieties. They will last longer, so you'll avoid wasting both food and money.

4. Avoid going to the supermarket when you're hungry. When you're hungry, everything on the supermarket shelves appears more enticing. You'll end up spending more than you had planned, as well as eating what you shouldn't.

5. Try to go to the supermarket by yourself! When you go food shopping with your children or with your partner, you run the risk of buying items that are not on your shopping list. How often have you bought things on someone else's whim? Kids, especially, often fixate on items that catch their attention. In order to humor or placate them you wind up buying what they want, and breaking the budget.

What strategies have you tried at home to help you save money on food?


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