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Each month, one thing that people spend a significant amount of money on is food. Grocery shopping can be overwhelming, time-consuming, and expensive – but it doesn’t have to be! I’ve created a list of my best grocery shopping hacks to make sure that you keep the costs down and save money when grocery shopping!

  • Know what you have at home. There’s nothing worse than buying something expensive only to come home, rummage through the pantry, and realize that you already have it. Take inventory of what you already have on hand to avoid these mix-ups.
  • Plan out your meals. In order to know exactly what you are spending, plan out what you need to buy and calculate the cost of your trip before you go. If you create a budget, you can stick to it by planning in advance.
  • Use coupons. This is a pretty obvious hack, but because it is so obvious, it can be overlooked. The key with using coupons is not to buy things that you wouldn’t normally buy just because they are “on sale”. Use coupons to buy items that you would buy anyway to save money.
  • Decide when you are going to eat out, and resist temptation. We’ve all been there. You had to get up early to finish a project for your boss, you spent the whole day running around the office, and a solid hour at the gym. You haven’t stopped moving for the past 12 hours – the last thing that you want to do is cook dinner. Put a little wiggle room in the budget for occasions like these so that you don’t have to cook. But you also have to realize when there is no room in your budget for wasting food that you have at home and going out instead. Come up with some quick recipes so that you can whip something up when you’re in a situation like this.
  • Don’t waste food. Don’t just buy food because you think you should eat it. Yes, it’s great to have tons of fresh produce on hand, and you should be eating it, but if it goes to waste every week because you don’t feel like having it, you’re throwing money down the drain. Take baby steps when it comes to incorporating a new food into your diet so that you don’t end up wasting it.
  • Eat before you go to the grocery store. This is a psychological trick. Shopping on an empty stomach increases our likelihood to make impulse buys. As we walk through a grocery store, we are blinded by our hunger and end up grabbing whatever looks good. If you shop on a full stomach, it will reduce these impulses.
  • Buy in bulk, when it makes sense. If you’re willing to do some research, you can calculate when it will save you money to buy items in bulk. Taking advantage of bulk items can be helpful in reducing costs in the long run.

These are just a few grocery shopping hacks to hopefully help you save a little bit – or a lot! – of money.