How to Save Money on Groceries (without coupons)

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Today, I’d like to share some helpful tips for how to save money on groceries (WITHOUT COUPONS).

I can tell you one thing…I am far from an extreme couponer. 

Don’t get me wrong, if I have a coupon for something that I need, I will definitely use it.

But as far as a full blown coupon-binder-toting-mama.  It’s just not for me!

Aside from the fact that I can’t quite figure out the coupon lingo, it’s just way too time consuming for this busy mom!

I’m a firm believer that unless you just absolutely love couponing, you don’t need to spend all your time clipping away to save big at the grocery store.

In fact, we easily stick to a budget of $100/week (for our family of 5) by following these simple grocery tips.

How to Save Money on Groceries (without coupons)

Decide on your grocery budget at the beginning of the month

You need to be able to set a goal for your grocery spending, otherwise you will overspend every time.

A couple of years ago, I went through our bank statements and realized we were spending over $1100/month on groceries, and over $400/month on fast food and restaurants.

At that time, we had 2 kids but they were just babies, so this was basically for two people.

Once we set a budget of $100/week for groceries, we were forced to figure out meal planning and grocery list planning to stick to our budget.

This has saved us so much money each month, and allowed us to make huge payments to get out of debt fast.

Related: How to budget for beginners

Use cash envelopes to make sure there’s no cheating on your grocery budget.

When we go to the grocery store, we bring a $100 bill.

That’s it!

There’s no going over our budget if we don’t have the debit card as back up.

Learning to use cash envelopes to control our spending has been a great experience and has helped us decrease our spending in more ways than just the food budget.

Related: How to get started with cash envelopes

Create a meal plan that includes simple ingredients.

Meal planning is a pain in the you-know-what. I realize that!

That’s why I recommend setting aside the time to make a full month meal plan, and repeat it for several months!

Yes, it can get boring after a while, but when that happens we just replace a few of the meals and carry on.

This makes our grocery budget extremely predictable and eliminates the dinner time decision fatigue that leads so many people to stop by the drive thru.

You can grab a sample of our one month meal plan and all the recipes for FREE below:

Make a list before you head to the grocery store (and stick to it!)

Another great way to save money at the grocery store without coupons, is to create a list before you head out, and stick to it.

Don’t let yourself succumb to impulse buys as you walk through the store.

Make a list and focus on it!

If you are struggling with impulse buys, you can try grocery pick up.

That you way you know exactly how much your groceries will cost, and someone else does the shopping for you so you really can’t cheat!

Related: Meal Planning Ideas on a Budget

Check your pantry before you head to the grocery store, so you don’t buy duplicates.

I can’t tell you how many times I end up with 7 ketchup and 9 syrup containers in my pantry!

It might seem like a pain, but if you just take a couple of minutes to check your pantry as you create your shopping list you won’t end up with duplicate items.

You can even create your meal plan, based on the items you already have in your pantry. This will save you so much!

Stick to generic brands to save money on your grocery bill.

We always buy the Kroger brand or Kirkland Signature brand (at Costco)…our two favorite places to shop!

Generic items are sometimes as much as a dollar cheaper than their brand name counterparts.

They taste the same, and save you money! It’s a win-win.

I will caution you to always double check the prices though.

Sometimes if there is a sale, the brand name item might be cheaper!

It’s always good to be checking prices, and be able to adjust as you shop.

Use rebate apps for saving money on groceries, like Fetch and Ibotta.

You’re probably not going to save hundreds per month using rebate apps, but they are much easier to use than coupons.

I simply scan my receipts after I get home from the store, and every few months I’ll get maybe $10 or $20 back. 

It’s a little more passive than couponing, but still a way to save a few bucks on your grocery budget.

You can sign up for Fetch and Ibotta for FREE!

It’s not as hard as you think to save money on groceries, and no you don’t need to figure out coupons to do it!

A few simple planning skills like creating a budget, making a list, and checking your pantry, can help you save hundreds at the grocery store each month.

Related: How we cut thousands of dollars of expenses from our budget

Make sure you grab my free printable meal planning calendar and favorite frugal recipes to help you stick to your grocery budget this month!



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