25 painless ways to save money on groceries

Cutting excess fat from your budget is not as impossible as you might think. Although you may have little control over your mortgage or daycare costs, you can save a lot of money on groceries, utilities, cell phone and cable bills, back-to-school supplies, transportation costs, personal care expenses, a new car , a bank fees, prescriptions, dental and vision care, seasonal merchandise, entertainment and much more. This article teaches you 25 easy ways to save money on groceries.

1. Agree on a weekly or monthly grocery budget and stick with it no matter what.

2. Instead of buying pre-cut fruits like watermelon or pineapple, buy whole fruit and save money every time. Likewise, don’t buy coleslaw or packaged salads. Why pay $ 2.19 for a 16-ounce package of coleslaw when you can buy a head of cabbage for as little as 49 cents a pound?

3. Don’t forget to shop at the pharmacy. You can find great deals on groceries and household items at CVS, Walgreens, and RiteAid. If you sign up with SavingStar (next tip), you can link your CVS and RiteAid loyalty cards to your SavingStar account for additional savings.

We recently saved a lot of money on our neighborhood CVS by combining advertised specials with an in-store coupon. This is how it worked:

CVS reduced the price of an 8-pack of branded paper towels from $ 8.79 to $ 5.00. We bought two packages. They also cut the price of a 5.5-ounce can of solid albacore from $ 2.19 to 88 cents. We bought 10 cans. We also used a $ 5 in-store coupon that was good for any qualifying purchase of $ 10 or more.

We ended up paying $ 14.15 for the paper towels and the tuna. If we had bought everything at regular prices, we would have paid $ 40.71. The difference is a whopping $ 26.56 or 65%.

4. Join more than 3 million people using SavingStar e-coupons at more than 25,000 grocery stores and pharmacies nationwide. Is that how it works:

Membership is free and there are no clipping or coupon printing.

Find participating stores near you by entering your zip code in the search box on the SavingStar home page. For example, we entered zip code 43952 – Steubenville, Ohio – and found 4 participating supermarket chains and pharmacies (CVS, Giant Eagle, Kroger, and RiteAid). We also entered zip code 19148 – Philadelphia – and found six participating chains (Acme, CVS, Pathmark, RiteAid, ShopRite, and SuperFresh).

Link all of your qualifying grocery and pharmacy loyalty cards to your SavingStar account.

On the SavingStar website, select the e-coupons you want and link them to the supermarket and pharmacy loyalty cards you have registered with SavingStar.

Use your loyalty card at checkout. The total on your receipt does not change at checkout and the savings are not printed on the receipt. Your money is added to your SavingStar account within 2 to 22 days, depending on the store you purchased from. Saving Star notifies you by email when your account has been credited.

Once your savings reach $ 5.00, you can choose from these payment options:

– A deposit in your bank account or PayPal

– An Amazon gift card

– A donation to charity

SavingStar adds new e-coupons every week on the brands you love. These are some of the participating tags:

Classico®, Green Giant®, Pillsbury®, Betty Crocker®, Old El Paso ™, Progresso®, Chex®, Cheerios®, Mountain High®, Wheaties®, Right Guard®, Little Debbie®, Purex®, Smart Ones®, BUSH’S®, Truvia® and Diamond Crystal®.

These are some of the participating pharmacies and supermarkets:

A&P, ACME Markets, Albertsons, BI-LO, Buehlers, Copps, Country Mart, Country Market, CVS, Dollar General *, Farm Fresh, Food City, Fred Meyer, Giant Eagle, Giant Food Stores, Hy-Vee, Ingles, JustSave , Kennies, King Kullen, King Soopers, Kings Super Markets, K-Mart, Kroger, Nob Hill Foods, Owen’s, Pathmark, Pick n Save, Piggly Wiggly in SC or GA, Piggly Wiggly in WI or Il, Price Chopper (KS and MO), Price Chopper (northeast), QFC, Rainbow, Ralphs, Rite Aid, ShopRite, Stop & Shop, Super Fresh, Target *, The Food Emporium, Tops Markets, Village Market, Waldbaums, Walmart *, Wegmans and Winn- Marmita .

* This is a receipt scanning store that requires the SavingStar mobile app for iPhone or Android.

5. Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables and less meat. For example, you can buy oranges for as little as 20 ¢ each when they are in season. Compare that to $ 4.99 for a pound of 85% lean ground beef.

6. Instead of taking an unnecessary trip to the grocery store, use whatever you have on hand.

7. You don’t need to buy the $ 12.99 bottle of shampoo your stylist recommends. Expensive does not always mean better. You can buy a 15 oz. bottle of brand name shampoo for as little as 79 ¢ when it goes on sale.

8. Before you go to the supermarket, be sure to read your supermarket’s advertising circular. Plan your purchases based on what is on sale. Always take advantage of “buy one get one free” offers, especially on expensive items like vitamins and meat.

9. Find out how your supermarket calculates “buy one get one free” offers. Some supermarkets and pharmacies require you to buy both items for the “buy one get one free” price. If you buy just one, you automatically pay the normal price instead of the 50% discount.

For example, if you purchase a unit from a BOGO promotion at Pittsburgh-based Giant Eagle®, you will pay 50% of the regular retail price. On the other hand, if you buy a unit from a BOGO deal on CVS, you will automatically pay retail.

10. Shop at supermarkets that have fuel benefit programs. You can save 10 to 20 cents on a gallon of gas for every $ 50 you spend on qualifying groceries, recipes, and gift cards. You can learn more about fuel benefits here: How to Get Free Gas at the Grocery Store.

11. Buy generic or store brands instead of brand names. For example, the price of a 42 oz. box of generic oatmeal costs $ 2.69 at an Ohio supermarket. Comparatively, the store brand is $ 3.99 and the brand is a whopping $ 5.99. Is your calculator available?

12. Buy seasonal products. You can pay as little as 99 ¢ for a pound for red seedless grapes when they are in season, and up to $ 3.99 a pound when they are not.

13. Why pay $ 4.29 for 10 ounces of potato chips when you can buy a pound of nutritious bananas for as little as 39 cents?

14. Why pay $ 2.49 for a 6-ounce box of mac and cheese when you can buy a comparable size from the store brand for 59 cents?

15. Why pay $ 1.99 for 9 ounces of dish soap when you can buy 25 ounces of the same brand for $ 2.00 when it goes on sale?

16. Why pay $ 3.99 for a 6-ounce breakfast entree when you can buy a 42-ounce box of healthy oatmeal for $ 2.69?

17. Why pay $ 2.29 for a 20-ounce can of spray starch when you can buy it on sale for 99 cents?

18. Why pay $ 4.29 for 32 ounces of brand name window cleaner when you can buy a gallon of windshield washer fluid for $ 3.49?

19. Why pay $ 2.99 for a 16-ounce bottle of salad dressing when you can make it from scratch for much less per serving?

20. Why pay $ 2.49 for 16 ounces of cottage cheese when you can buy 32 ounces of the same brand for $ 3.00 or less?

21. Why pay $ 1.49 for a 15-ounce can of brand name beans when you can buy a comparable size of store brand for 79 cents?

22. Why pay $ 2.19 for a 15-ounce can of chili when you can make it from scratch for much less per serving?

23. Why pay $ 6.99 for a brand name hydrocortisone cream when you can buy a comparable size from the store brand for $ 3.04?

24. Why pay $ 4.99 for 15 ounces of canned coffee when you can buy 35 ounces of the same brand for $ 6.99 when it goes on sale?

25. Why pay $ 2.19 for 25 feet? When can aluminum foil go on sale for 99 cents?

This article has taught you 25 easy ways to save money on your grocery bill. The next time you are tempted to spend a Saturday afternoon at the mall, be sure to remember this timeless quote from Henrik Ibsen: “There can be no freedom or beauty in a home life that depends on loans and debt.”

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