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13 Budget Busters for Your Food Bill - GE Appliances

February 8th, 2018

If you’re looking to cut food costs – keep these suggestions in mind during your next grocery run.

Skip the End Caps

Bright lights, balloons, towering boxes: Those front-of-store and end-of-the-aisle arrangements of seasonal or of-the-moment items aren't necessarily discounted. In fact, a food company may have paid for premium placement-and they might be catching you off guard, too. In addition, just because an item makes it into a grocery store flyer or ad doesn't mean it's on sale. Stick to your list, check the regular pricing, and pass by the special setups.

Plan around sales

The weekly discounts should guide your recipe decisions. For example, if chicken breasts are on sale, take advantage of the savings to plan a few dinners with this key ingredient.

Make a list, and stick to it

Don't step foot into the grocery store without a list of what you're making that week for meals-and what ingredients you don't have. That planning keeps you from veering off your must-buys and adding pricey extras to your shopping cart.

Don't worry about labels

Store-label pasta? More than likely it will cost less and taste the same as more expensive options. That's generally true with most basics that you likely rely on.

Be devoted

Loyalty rewards, coupon newsletters: Sign up for rewards programs and apps offered by your grocery store so you can earn points or other freebies.

Stay in season

Blueberries in November? Just say no. They have been trucked long distances to make their way to your grocery store, and the price reflects it. Keep to a seasonal schedule with price-variable produce such as berries (some produce, such as carrots, bananas, and grapes, usually fluctuate less in cost). If you have freezer space, consider bulk, season-appropriate buys to freeze for use later in the year.

Fresh = frozen

If you're still craving a blueberry smoothie, take a trip down the freezer aisle. Frozen is generally less expensive than fresh, and you still get a nutritional bang.

Check the unit price

Many states require grocery stores to list the per unit/serving price of items on the shelf tags. Here's the surprising thing: Bigger boxes and packages aren't always a better deal. Look for this information or calculate it yourself before choosing a size.

No extras, thank you

Unless there's a super deal that week, toiletries, paper goods, and cleaning supplies get a big markup at the grocery store. Don't add them to your cart; instead check out online deals or head to another big box store to keep your grocery bill from unexpected jumps.

Do the work yourself

If the grocery store has grated the cheese, sliced the fruit, or mixed the spices, the price will reflect that. (And honestly, it doesn't take that much time to do those tasks yourself.)

Track your goods

An inventory of both pantry and fridge can keep you from ending up with 10 cans of tomato soup or endless boxes of crackers. Create a running list, using a note on a smartphone or with an app. Another good piece of intel to track: the lowest sale prices you've found on items.

Careful where you look

Those higher-priced items? Grocery stores place them right at eye level (or at your kids' eye level) so they're easy to see and easy to snag. Instead, look up and down in the aisles so you spot less-expensive options.

Content for this blog is credited to GE Appliance, click here to see original article.

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