Grocery prices are rising with inflation. How can you spend less on groceries? Here are 10 things to cut to save on your grocery bill.
I know it’s not news to any of you that groceries prices are rising. This week I compared prices from this popular meal plan I shared 2 years ago and – get this – the cost for the same groceries today is a whopping 32% higher. Yikes!
I know that it can be discouraging to go grocery shopping and pay a lot of money for what feels like very few groceries. It feels like any raise you might earn at work will be immediately negated by inflation. Add in a growing family with growing appetites and it can feel increasingly difficult to make ends meet.
But there are things we can do to pinch pennies and still save money here and there. Obviously groceries aren’t the only area inflation has hit, but it’s one area where we can make little changes that can end up significantly cutting our grocery bills.
Do a quick search online for saving money on groceries in 2023 and you’ll see that people are searching for things like:
- How can I save 50% on groceries?
- How can I spend less than $100 a week on groceries?
- How can I cut my grocery bill by 90%? (oof, that’s a tough one!)
Clearly, many people are searching for ways to reduce their groceries bills!
I’ve shared general tips for saving money on groceries here in the past and we’ve also discussed how to come up with a monthly grocery budget. Today though I thought we could tackle this topic from a slightly different angle by discussing some specific things to cut from your grocery list to save money.
So let’s jump right in and talk through ten things you should stop buying when you want to save money on groceries.
10 Things to Cut to Save on Your Grocery Bill
Pablo loves LaCroix and other similar drinks and I’ve really started enjoying Vitamin Water. And of course we’re good Texans and love us some Dr. Pepper. But when we’re trying to spend less on groceries drinks are one of the first things to get cut from our grocery list. They’re pricey and not truly necessary. #makewatergreatagain
2. Bagged salads
I love the convenience of bagged salads, and the pre-cut fruits and veggies in the produce section always look tempting. But make a quick price comparison and you’ll see that they are much more expensive than just getting your own produce and taking the time to prepare it yourself. (Just do it right away so it doesn’t die a slow death in your fridge’s produce drawer!)
3. Pre-portioned foods
It’s the time of year when lots of people are buying snacks like crackers, chips, etc. to go with their kids’ school lunches. While it’s super convenient to buy pre-portioned ones, it’s typically a better value to buy a regular bag of chips or box of crackers and portion them out yourself.
4. Multiple snack options
Some of us are really great about meal planning and being intentional when it comes to grocery shopping for those planned meals, but then we blow the budget on snacks. Well, contrary to what your kids may tell you, you don’t need ten snack options in your pantry at all times! Buying lots of snacks is a sure way to run up your grocery bill. Maybe try to have just a couple snack options one week and then switch things up the following week.
5. Regularly priced meat
I almost never buy regularly priced beef or ground beef. I’m sorry but $8 per pound for a basic chuck roast is not okay haha. Thankfully our local Kroger has sales regularly so I always watch for those and try to stock up a bit if I can when there are especially good deals.
I’ve even started waiting for sales on chicken as well since those prices have also risen considerably. Our Kroger had chicken breasts for only $1.77 a pound a couple weeks ago – that’s almost half what they cost regularly at Walmart now.
6. Name brands
This one might be a no-brainer but I still wanted to mention it. For most products you probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between the name brand and the store brand in a blind taste test. Of course there are a few where the name brand is clearly better (I’m looking at you Cheez-Its and Oreos) but if you can make yourself branch out from name brand you’ll definitely save money!
7. Fancy ingredients
One thing that can really run up your grocery bill is when you decide to try out new recipes that call for a bunch of fancy ingredients that you don’t have on hand. Now, I’m not saying never branch out and try new things, but when you’re on a tight budget it’s a smart idea to stick to simpler meals that call for basic ingredients that you typically use.
Another idea for when your recipe calls for an ingredient that you don’t have and probably won’t use again would be to see if there’s a good (and cheaper) substitute that you could use instead.
8. Out of season fruit
My family and I love fruit so I especially love the summer months when all the fruit is on sale and I can buy berries, peaches, grapes, and more for great prices. At other times of the year though we rarely buy some of those fruits because they’re not in season and are priced much higher.
During those times of year I tend to stick to our staple fruits – apples and bananas – and often oranges in the cooler months. And of course I always keep my eye out for sales on the other fruits no matter the time of year.
This may seem like an odd food item to mention – cereal isn’t THAT expensive – but let me tell you, with multiple kids you can go through it so fast! Even the basic store-brand cereal has gone up in price lately, so if you’re on a tight budget you may want to consider other breakfast options.
Eggs are much more filling and are currently back down to a good price thankfully. Oats are another great option. A 42 oz. container of oats doesn’t cost much more than a box of cereal and will stretch farther and fill tummies for longer too.
10. Foods you won’t use
Back in 2020 everyone ran out and bought all the shelf staples from the grocery stores, including lots of beans and rice. It was probably the only time that I haven’t been able to find those really basic food items at the store. Basics like beans and rice are cheap and are a great food to buy when you’re broke, but I can guarantee you that there are a lot of people who stocked up on beans, rice, canned veggies, tuna, etc. and then never ate them.
The bottom line is that no matter how cheap it is it’s still a waste of money if you’re not actually going to eat it. 🙂
So, that’s my list of 10 things to cut to save on your grocery bill. Do you agree or disagree? What would you add to this list? Let me know in the comments!