Pandemic Has Your Pockets Thin? 5 Ways You Can Cut Your Food Costs and Save Cash When Your Money Is Tight

With an ongoing pandemic and so many people losing their jobs or in some way becoming less financially stable, a lot of people are searching for ways to cut costs. Let’s face it, food is expensive but we all have to eat. So what can you do, when you have to eat but your budget is tight? Here are five ways you can cut your food costs and save money that you can spend elsewhere. Are you ready for the tips?

Let’s get started…..

1. Buy in Bulk

People often buy things in the sizes that they need them in but smaller sizes usually cost more. Buying in bulk can save you money because usually bigger quantities are cheaper by the ounce, pound, or etc. But don’t be tempted to buy everything in bulk, just the things you use frequently. For example, why buy milk in bulk if you rarely drink milk, just for the sake of saving money? The milk will go bad and that means you would be really losing money.

Although you have to pay memberships fees for some, the big warehouse type stores have excellent deals on family packs of meat and things like toilet paper. And, while you can go to places like “Sam’s Club” and find great deals on everyday household items there is a catch. Some of these types of stores can be expensive to shop in if you are doing all of your shopping there. Many times these places are expensive on other things that you could get at places like, dollar stores.

2. Have a Menu

If you want to really save money on food, you should plan your meals with a menu. Sit down and write down a weekly menu that includes breakfast, lunch, dinner and a snack. Then write out a grocery list for all the things you need to complete your menu for the week. This will help you by not purchasing things at the store that you don’t need. Following a menu leads to less food waste and that will save money as well. Being organized will keep you from grabbing random items that you may not use and have to throw them out, because you are only buying the things you will use based on your weekly menu.  

3. Buy Your Meat from Meat Markets

Another way to save money is to shop at a meat market or a store that only sells meat. How? These markets usually have sales on certain meats that can be way cheaper by the pound as opposed to the meat section of the supermarket which has a smaller amount of meat to sell. These markets have large quantities of meat that they want to get rid of before it spoils, so you will find common cuts of meat are sometimes way cheaper than going to a butcher. That is an important point because butcher shops can be expensive. Butcher shops are often the most expensive places to buy meat.

Another great thing meat markets do are offer boxes of meat commonly used for the month by a household and selling it for a set price. A box could include a certain number of pounds of chicken, sausage, steaks, bacon and ground beef for a set price like 50 bucks. For a family this can be a great way to save money and control the cost of meat.

4. Buy Your Produce from Farmer’s Markets

You should also expect farmer’s markets to have produce that is inexpensive as compared to the supermarket. Unlike the supermarket a farmer’s market only sells produce. Not all of these places are the cheapest so price compare because some of the bigger farmer’s market can be more expensive on some of the things but for the most part will have some deals that will help you to save money. And if you find a good one, your produce will be fresher than the supermarket in some cases.

5. Do Not Eat Out

This tip should be a “brainer” because it is common knowledge that “eating out” can be expensive. Eating at a restaurant may be convenient but you will pay more for your food than if you prepared it at home. Even fast food which is usually cheaper than going to a “sit down” restaurant can be pricey if you eat it often even if you are using the coupons you get in your mailbox.

I get it. Many of us are tired or busy and it is easier than cooking at home but there are ways to do it that won’t be such a hassle. You can prep for your meals when you have time and prepare most of your meals that way it is quicker for you to get a meal done. You can also precook meals and refrigerate them or freeze them and then reheat them later.

So here are my tips for how you can save money on the food you buy. Do you use any of these tips? Do you have any tips you would like to share on how you save money on food?  Feel free to leave a comment. I hope everybody is staying healthy and safe and thank you for your support.   

But what do I know? I’m just a bootleg sociologist who nobody will listen to so I started a blog……….

What are your thoughts? 

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References:

It’s True! Farmers Markets Are Cheaper Than Supermarkets | Kitchn (thekitchn.com)

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