Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Works for me Wednesday--defeating rising prices

I am sure that everyone is aware of the rising prices in the grocery stores and seemingly every where else too! So about a month ago, I came up with the list of tips that have been working for me to reduce my grocery bill in other ways than making my family not eat!

My top 10 tips for helping me "defeat" rising prices in the grocery store!!

1. Shop your house before you shop the store!! Make a grocery list and stick to it! This will help eliminate extra trips to the store!

2. Make weekly menus for every meal and snacks around the grocery sales. If you can figure out anything to cook from the sales---use cookbooks and find new dishes to try! Also realize that you might have leftovers to use up. Plan a 'smorgasbord' or make leftover makeovers!

3. Make a pantry/freezer list of EVERYTHING you buy and post it on your fridge so that when you run out or are getting low you can circle or highlight that item. I made up a form that has different categories (canned goods, frozen items, produce, etc) and then wrote down everything in those categories that I purchase. Basically made a Master Grocery List.

4. If you are not already, start making bread and baked good/sweet treats from scratch. I still purchase sandwich bread but I make bread for sides at meals and also all of our sweet treats/baked goods. I am working at recognizing other things I can make from scratch, like cream of whatever soup, gravies, etc.

5. Use coupons for items that you purchase consistently! Watch the sales and when those items are on sale use the coupon and save more!

6. Start following the sales, and make a price book of items that you buy regularly. You will find that stores have what are called "loss leaders" in the ads...basically an item is advertised for a major discounted price. I am sure that you have seen in the ads where the same items are sale week after week...well track the price of those items and you will see that one of the weeks that an item is on sale it will be discounted more than any other week it was on sale.

7. When you find an item at a low price stock up within reason on that item. For example, whole chickens were on sale at one of the stores that I shop at for 59 cents/lb. Instead of getting other cuts of chicken that week I got 3 whole chickens to use in my menus.

8. Buy store brand items rather than name brand. Do you have an Aldis or Save-A-Lot near you?? You might want to give them a try for your shopping needs. My Save-A-Lot has had coupons out for 99 cent gallon milk with coupon and 99 cent/lb of 8lbs or more of all beef hamburg with coupon. Oh and can't forget the 50 cents/head for lettuce! **updated to comment about where I found the of my local papers has a monthly insert of the "Save-A-Lot ad" that the coupons are in.**

9. Buy in-season fruit and veggies. OR Do a garden and can it! I wish that I still had room at my house to do this!! I have tried container gardens and I have not had good success with them. So I head to my local farmer's market or roadside stands to find my in season fresh fruits and veggies!

10. Buy items in bulk from Sam’s/Costco. I go to Sams on a monthly basis and get only certain things (baking supplies, cheese, cereal, snacks, etc.) I can supply you with a more specific list if you would like!

These are the things that are working for me! So what are you doing to "defeat" rising prices?? Do you have any more tips to add??

To read more about things that work for others, head over to Shannon-Rocks in my Dryer.


BarbaraLee said...

You said that you make bread. I do to. But our thirty store has it for $.75 a loaf. I have debating if it is worth me to bake or buy.

April said...

menu planning definitely helps alot around here.

Donna said...

hmmm...where do U find these Save-a-lot coupons????? I've never seen one but I surely would use one!;-)

barbara said...

We just recently discovered that Meijer grinds the "Laura's" brand of ground beef each morning. At 8pm each evening, they discount the remaining ground beef that didn't sell that day, and if it doesn't sell by another time (not sure of that time), they throw it out. We've started purchasing ground beef on Friday nights when we drive past that store!

I'm sure there are other stores that do something similar - just ask the butcher!