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Taming the Grocery Budget Beast

March 26th, 2008 at 04:40 pm

I spend about $150. on groceries each week, and then I spend about $15 or $20 per week on lunches at work. I try to limit meals out with the girls to once or twice a month. My goal is to cut my food budget and contribute what I save there towards my house nest egg account.

I will readily admit that I have never been much of a coupon clipper. My grocery store prints coupons along with the receipt that seem to be refelctive of items that I have already purchased. Unfortunately, I don't always remember to use these coupons. (silly, I know)

Now I have become aware of how much money I am leaving on the table by paying full price for my groceries. My goal is to find ways to cut my grocery budget by at least 25% by using coupons. I will also make more of an effort to bring my lunch to work and limit eating out at lunch to one day per week, or $15 per week.

One of the challenges is that I am a vegetarian, and I don't eat many prepared foods, which is most often what the coupons are for. I buy my produce fresh and prepare almost all of my meals from scratch. So, I will will see how much of a dent coupons are going to make in my grocery store spending.

Action Items from Couponmom.com:

-start using a grocery price book where I track the prices of the items we use regularly

-remember to bring this book (and use it) as I shop for groceries

When I reach these goals I will be able to add $170. additional to my house fund.

For those who are also interested in finding creative, easy ways to cut their grocery budget, here are a couple of sites that I have found to be useful. If you know of any others, please feel free to share them.

http://www.dreamlinesavingsolutions.com/grocery-savings.aspx

http://www.couponmom.com/

7 Responses to “Taming the Grocery Budget Beast”

  1. thriftorama Says:

    You may also want to consider joining a farm co-op. it saved us a lot of money on veggies last summer, and the food we did get was locally grown and much higher quality.

  2. Caoineag Says:

    Farmer's markets are useful too in the summer. They tend to be cheap and have very fresh produce.

  3. treasureinheaven Says:

    Great advice! This is why I am so glad that I joined this blogging community. I do love Farmer's Markets and we do have a great one not far from me in Capitol Hill.

  4. ceejay74 Says:

    Oops, thriftorama and caoineag beat me to it! LOL. I'm a vegan living with two vegetarians, so we struggle to stay within our budget during the winters in Minnesota. But in the summer, we belong to a CSA that we already bought a share of: a big box of veggies and fruit every Saturday through late spring, summer and early fall for about $25 per week. One week last summer we nearly got our value for the week just with three gigantic heirloom tomatoes (about $7 per pound at the co-op). That and the farmer's markets keep our budget under control but our bellies full of as much fruit and veg as we like to have.

    In winter, well, it's tougher. More frozen food, more pasta and beans and rice, and the fruits and veggies are just expensive and not as nice. Still worth it though. I predict you'll do a lot better during the warm weather.

  5. Maismom Says:

    I'm a coupon clipper, and the most helpful site I found is Hot Coupon World.

    http://hotcouponworld.com/forums/index.php

    These ladies in the site are professional coupon shoppers. They saved a ton of money for me. The best thing about this site is, it's FREE!!

    I checked couponmom site before, but I didn't find anything new there.

    One thing about coupons is that coupon themselves won't save you much money. They work the best when combined with store sale/promotion/rebate, etc.

    For example, Kellog had a rebate form for their Special K products. You buy 4 items, and get $10 back. I had $4/4 coupons for Kellog cereal, and Rite Aid had Buy one get one free sale for Special K. I bought 4 boxes, paid $5.94. ($4.97 for 2 boxes x 2 = $9.94 - $4 coupon = $5.94) And, I am getting $10 back by Kellog rebate. On top of that, Rite Aid is sending me $5 coupon that is good for next Rite Aid purchase for anything. So, I made $9.06 by buying 4 boxes of cereal.

    This is one of very nice cases that I can triple dip (Kellog coupon, Kellog rebate, and Rite Aid rebate) the deal, and the reason I love couponing.

  6. luxlivingfrugalis Says:

    Welcome Evelyn!! I have a couple of Evelyn's in my life. They are awesome ladies and well loved! Hope you get a lot of good advice here on the blogs. Don't forget to check out the forums!

  7. treasureinheaven Says:

    Thanks everyone for all of the fabulous ideas.

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