How to Save Money on Food

Food is a necessity that can become quite expensive. But, with proper planning, one can greatly reduce the amount of money one spends on food. Here are a seven tips for saving money on food:

It is better to cook than eat out:

It is usually cheaper to prepare meals at home than it is to buy food at restaurants. You can generally get larger portions of food at cheaper prices when you cook for yourself. Home cooked food also tends to be healthier than restaurant food and fast-food as well. When you cook food yourself from scratch, you at least have a better idea of exactly what ingredients went into it. You can get a cook book or search online and experiment with different recipes and ingredients.

Shop at discount supermarkets:

Avoid high-end grocery stores. Instead, shop at discount chain supermarkets.  These will generally sell the same types of groceries at cheaper prices.

Don’t buy foods at convenience stores or gas stations:

Sometimes it is more convenient to buy food at smaller stores, such as convenience stores or gas stations, because they have longer hours or are better located. But prices in these places are generally much higher than those at regular supermarkets. Your best bet for cheap prices are big, discount chain supermarkets.

Buy generic brands instead of name brands:

Generic and store brand products are generally cheaper than the big name brands.

Don’t make impulse purchases:

Plan what you want to buy ahead of time and avoid making impulse purchases.  It is best not to go to the supermarket on an empty stomach, or you may end up buying things on the shelf on a whim.

Scan flyers for short-term deals and coupons:

Scan store flyers for deals on products that you would normally buy, or products that can substitute for foods that you normally buy. So, for example, if you normally cook with potatoes and you see a significant discount on sweet potatoes in a weekly flyer, you can buy sweet potatoes instead of potatoes for the week.

Extend the shelf life of perishable food items:

The shelf life of some perishable food items can be greatly extended by freezing them. So, for example, raw meat and poultry will often only last a few days. But if you freeze it, it can last for months. That way you will have less food going to waste and you will not have to purchase as much food.

Following these tips can help you to save a great deal of money on food. Since food is an everyday necessity, cutting your expenses in this area means you may be able to save a significant amount of money in the long run.