When I tell people that I feed my family of 7 for $400 per month, I usually get the crazed-eye look. I know they wonder if we live on hot dogs — no, we don’t!
Here are a few tips from my experience that may help finetune your grocery budget and feed your growing family.
Once-a-Month Grocery Shopping:
I’ve been shopping once-a-month for my family for nearly three years. My grocery costs where literally cut in half by taking this step.
If I’m not in the store then I’m not spending money. I also have a better plan laid out since I must maximize my time and resources on this one trip.
Note: You can see an example of what I buy for my once-a-month shopping trip here. You can also read some answers to Frequently Asked Questions I get about shopping once-a-month here.
Shopping at One Store:
When I shop, I often go to two or three stores, but then again, it’s just one day per month. However, depending on my schedule, I can usually feed my family for the same $400 just by sticking to one store. It may not be bulk amounts, but it’s doable.
Buying in Bulk:
I buy rice and oatmeal in 25-pound bags for a cost of $16.59 per 25-pound bag of brown rice and $15 per 25-pound bag of quick oats. I divide these large bags into gallon storage bags and stretch them to last three months.
When I left the outside workforce to stay home full-time, I quickly learned that cooking from scratch was a wonderful money-saving method. Be sure to check out Crystal’s articles on freezer cooking and cooking from scratch.
It helps me to lay out a monthly meal plan before I go once-a-month grocery shopping. Make yourself a monthly calendar and save it to reuse the following month.
I usually cook a large meal and serve it various ways over several meals. There are many other ways to meal plan. Some moms even do once-a-month cooking!
Shopping Cabinets and Pantry:
Access everything you have in your pantry before giving in to the urge to run to the store. If you shop your pantry, you should be able to come up with a few extra meals.
Gardening & Canning:
This is the first year that we’ve made a large garden; I plan to teach myself how to can as well. I can’t wait to see the additional savings this gives our family.
I’m sure many of you garden and can fruits, vegetables, and jellies. I’d love to hear your tips and cost savings in the comments.
I’m still learning this one. I wonder how much more I could save by couponing, furthermore how many extras I could stock up on?
As I’m able, I page through the coupon information here on MoneySavingMom.com, slowly learning this skill. At this point, even without couponing my pantry and freezers are full!
What are your best ways to save on your monthly grocery bill?
Jamerrill Stewart‘s passion is to help families afford the homeschool life. She offers free stuff, goodies, and bargains daily for this purpose at FreeHomeschoolDeals.com. Join Jamerrill and her family as they live the life of faith at HolySpiritLedHomeschooling.net