It’s no secret that the costs of many goods and services have increased in the past year. While the reasons for inflation vary, the results are that many average Americans struggle to make ends meet. Many small businesses, such as small grocery stores, also feel the strain of increased prices.
Many individuals and families find that their wages haven’t gone up enough to offset the increased cost of living, so more and more people are trying to make tighter budgets and stick to them.
One area where most people spend a lot of their money is on food. Other than rent and mortgage, food is one of the most significant expenses and one of the most important. After all, everyone has to eat; if you have a big family, keeping your food budget low is much more challenging.
So, if you’re looking for tips on saving money on your monthly food budget, this guide is here to assist you. These tips can apply whether you live alone or have many mouths to feed.
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Tip 1: Get Creative With Staples
When trying to save money on food, you’ll mostly want to stick to eating at home, especially if you’re feeding more than one person. While this doesn’t mean you should never enjoy yourself or treat yourself, going out to eat, even at fast food chains, is much less financially wise.
Still, as grocery prices have gone up, even eating at home can cost more than it used to. One way to offset these costs is by getting creative with grocery staples. While even staple items may be more expensive, you can still cook budget-friendly meals by sticking to items like rice or potatoes as the base.
However, you don’t have to stick with the same meals repeatedly. You can make endless combinations with a staple carb, a vegetable, and a protein. Adding herbs, spices, and other substitutions will keep the meals interesting.
Tip 2: Get Inspiration From Others
Eating delicious food while on a budget is a bit more challenging if you’re not great at cooking or just don’t like to do it. While this may be a roadblock, the great news is that social media makes it easier to learn some quick, cheap meals.
Many people on TikTok and other social media platforms share their budget-friendly meal ideas, which don’t take much effort to put together. By learning from others, you’ll get great tips and may find you try new recipes you never would have thought of yourself.
Tip 3: Buy In Bulk When Possible
While you may have heard this tip before regarding saving money on groceries, it’s still a good one to remember. Buying in bulk is more effective and valuable if you feed multiple people. However, it can still help you save money if you’re the only one in your household.
Many items, especially non-perishables, are much cheaper if you buy a lot at once. So, consider stocking up on some of those staples mentioned above, such as rice, beans, and even paper products like paper towels.
Tip 4: Take Advantage Of Rewards
When you shop, ensure you’re using any rewards or savings cards available through the store. Most grocery stores, whether local or big box, have a saving program. While these might not lead to big savings, the little amounts do add up over time.
Finally, remember that while the tips on this list can help, you shouldn’t feel bad if it’s harder to make your grocery budget these days. Costs have gone up, so just try to do the best you can and learn tips from others doing the same.