10 Ways To Reduce Your Food Shopping Bill

Sunday, 17 June 2018

10 Ways To Reduce Your Food Shopping Bill

I am a woman on a mission this week, and that mission is to reduce our weekly food bill. There are a number of reasons for this. Firstly, we probably spend too much. Whilst I meal plan, there are often other things jumping into the basket which we probably don't need. These luxury's will disappear for a few weeks. Secondly, we could do with saving some money. We have just booked to visit family in Madrid for a long weekend in the summer holidays. The flights were much more than we were expecting and we haven't even sorted accommodation or food and travel when we are there. If we can save some money on the food shopping it will really help. Lastly, I have a little more time to cook. Since starting back at work I have often opted for the easy option rather than the cheapest. I have been really busy and exhausted. Now that year 11 are finishing their exams the pressure is off a little and I am bringing less work home. More time for cooking!

So how am I going to reduce my shopping bill?

1. Take a note of what is in the cupboards and freezer already and plan to use it.

I am a sucker for a special offer and like to stock up. A little look through the cupboard and there was a whopping 12 cans of tinned tomatoes. We had some new potatoes that needed to be used so I swopped pizza day from this weeks meal plan to new potato frittata. We had some ham that needed using so this was swopped for the pancetta and then standard cheddar instead of goats cheese.

2. Make a point of visiting Lidl and stocking up.

This week I was really disappointed with my Tesco delivery. Whilst my shopping comes from a massive store, because I ordered my shopping to be delivered at 9am, they pick the produce at 4am. This meant that loads of the food I had ordered wasn't available. I therefore popped to Lidl to pick up some meat and couldn't believe the savings. Chorizo was £1.39 unlike the standard price in Tesco of £2.50 That is a big difference. Add similar savings up over a number of items and it is a no brainer. I think I will stock up on some meat items and see how this makes a difference to our overall bill.

3. Add more vegetables.

Like it or not the best way to reduce costs is to eat less meat and to substitute it for vegetables. It has the added bonus of being good for you - just need to convince my boys on that one.

4. Cut down on the brands.

I am not a massive brand person, but if it is on the special offer list on Tesco I am often tempted into the brands. My boys have got used to reaching into the freezer and pulling out a Magnum on a hot day. There is nothing wrong with an ice pop, so they will be needing to get used to these. Again, I often buy brands like Muller when they are on special. However, these are still expensive, so regular yoghurts will be on the menu too.

5. Don't take the easy option, go for good value.

Here I am talking about buying pre prepared food. Life is hetic and the supermarkets are keen to sell us items at an inflated price if it makes our life easier. Most jars of tomato sauce can easily be made at home for a fraction of the cost and without the hidden sugar. Grated cheese is convinient, but you pay for that. I will be looking into how I can save those pennies here and there by adding slightly more time into my cooking.

6. Batch cooking.

Back in November I was the queen of batch cooking. I bought some extra pyrex dishes to use in the freezer and made massive meals that could be frozen. Then January came and it all went to pot. Time to sort that out again.

7. Use frozen vegetables.

It is so much cheaper than buying fresh and they don't go off, so I need to make sure I have big bags of vegetables in the freezer.

8. Don't have too many snacks for the kids.

My boys will happily raid the snack cupboard and then not eat their dinner. I will munch on their snacks when my husband is away. I shouldn't do this and neither should they. So less snacks it is.

9. Take our own snacks and drinks to the park.

Most days after school the boys are in the park with their friends. There is a cafe here and it is very tempting to treat myself to a coffee, or the boys to an ice cream. This gets expensive so taking snacks with me is the way forward.

10. Buy in bulk - within reason!

Usually, it is cheaper to buy in bulk. If you have the storage and it is on offer then it is worth taking advantage of this.

So here are my tips, and now to see how it pans out. Last month we spent a whopping £565.00 We did do some entertaining, but even so, that is quite steep for a family of 5. I think the best way for me to see if this works, is to see how much I can save within the next month. So far with my trip to Lidl and a Tesco shop, we are at £78 for the week and it should last well this week too. So I will update you in a month on how much or little) we have managed to save. Do you have any more tips?

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If you are looking to find ways of saving money on your food bill then check out my 10 ways to reduce your food shopping bill

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