80/20 is a common ratio rule for how much of your health or weight loss is food/working out. While I am a bit more inclined to say 70/30, I know how important your daily consumption of food is. If you are eating whatever you want but working out every day, you are still unlikely to reach your fitness or weight goals. That is because what goes in your body is SO vital. People think that a low budget means low-quality food, but it doesn’t have to. Below are some of my tips as well as some others from Dave Ramsey, a financial author and radio host, on how to save money on your groceries.
Stick to your budget
Give yourself a budget based on all of your expenses, and make sure groceries are on it. You can even tell the teller you have a certain amount to spend and you can put unnecessary items at the end of the counter in case you go over.
Keep track of your numbers while you shop
Instead of guessing how much you’re spending, or just hoping it doesn’t go over your budget, keep track as you shop! Have a calculator or phone handy to stay ahead of the game.
Use what you have
Look through your cupboards and fridge to see what you already have. Make a plan based on what you already have and then add items to it.
Meal plan (and eat leftovers)
Now that you know what is in the house already, make a plan. My husband, Jacob, and I make 2-3 meals on the weekend to prepare for our week. This means that unless we are eating out throughout the week or going to someone else’s home, we are eating the same things for the week. Doubling or tripling up on food can really cut down the cost. Neither of us minds and it helps us stay on task.
This is something Jacob and I are going to try out in March. We both love meat but have realized that a good chunk of our food budget comes from meat. Some other less expensive protein options are beans or chickpeas.
Buy meat when it’s on sale
This works well for us as we have a deep freezer where we can freeze the meat we didn’t need for that week but was on sale. It is amazing how much you can save while preparing for future weeks.
Don’t go shopping hungry
This is a big one for me! I always want all the snacks, pre-made appetizers or treats when I go grocery shopping hungry. Even if you are going out before a meal, take a snack or something to avoid these urges to purchase more than your list.
Leave the over-spender at home
Whether it’s a spouse, roommate, kid or yourself who always spends more on groceries when they go out, leave them at home. This is a huge key to saving money because you are less tempted to buy unnecessary items without the added pressure.
I hope these principles help you start on a path of starting or sticking to a budget. Remember, a low budget doesn’t have to mean low quality food. Good luck on your quest to find what works best for you!
Until next time,
Keep living your best life,