This article was kindly provided by Alison Pinto of Menus4Mums
Wondering how to make ends meet? Want to get your grocery costs down but keep the quality high? Menu4Mums, the online family meal planners, have given us these top tips to help you save on your grocery shop. Why not challenge yourself to see how much you can save?
Tip 1: Plan your meals. Look online at supermarket offers (or look at the Menus4Mums Bargain Spotting page) and build meals around these ingredients. Plan a suitable meal for each day with a good balance of protein (eg meats, pulses), carbohydrates (eg potatoes, rice, pasta), and vegetables. See what needs using up in your freezer or fridge. Think about using up leftovers too. And try to include an interesting variety of tastes and textures. Then write your shopping list.
Tip 2: Never shop on an empty stomach. If you do, you just know you’ll end up at the checkout with a trolley brimming with cake, crisps, and chocolate – and a huge grocery bill to boot! Instead, if you are feeling a bit peckish, have a banana or a quick snack. It could save you a lot of money.
Tip 3: Beware of BOGOF and Buy 2, Get 1 Free deals. You might find it is still cheaper to buy a different brand or an own brand product. Be particularly wary of deals on perishable foods – just because you can buy two bags of pears for the price of one doesn’t mean to say that you will want to eat them all! Finally, many of the deals are offered on foods which are high in salt, sugar and fat, so beware.
Tip 4: Taste test lower range products. We don’t mean suddenly going from premium brands to the most basic products. But if you give some of the middle range brands a try, the chances are you won’t notice a difference. Look at the health data on the packaging too – some lower range foods are actually healthier than the premium varieties.
Tip 5: Give the supermarket a miss sometimes. Try buying your meat at your local butcher – you’re likely to be impressed by the quality. Plus if you want just 3 chicken breasts, you don’t have to fork out for a pack of 4 so you only end up paying for what you need. Seasonal fruit and veg is often cheaper at your local market or farmer’s market, and you could turn it into a trip out with the family. Or check out your local farm shop for quality, local, seasonal produce.
Menus4Mums help busy parents ditch the takeaways and ready meals and serve up tasty, healthy food for their families, saving them time and money in the kitchen. Find out more at www.menus4mums.co.uk.