Find Ways to Cut Your Food Bill

Food can easily be one of your biggest expenses. There are so many different ways that you can spend the money. The more expensive options include eating out or getting take-out and even cooking can be quite expensive depending on the ingredients you choose to buy. It can be even more difficult if you are focused on eating healthy and organic options instead of the junk food that is often cheapest at the grocery store. Adapting these ideas to your needs and choosing the ones that will work well with your dietary goals is just one way that you can work to cut your food bill each month. 

1
Save Money by Working with Others

One of the ways that you can save money on your food is by working with others to reduce your food bill. You can set up a food exchange where you trade off nights to cook with friends. This gives you the chance to socialize, and it is cheaper to buy and cook one meal for a larger crowd each week, then it is to cook several smaller meals for yourself. Another option is to buy items in bulk together through a local food co-op or at the farmers market. Some farmers markets have a section where they sell in wholesale to restaurants, but you have to make larger minimum purchases. Going in as a group to do this can save you a lot of money. 

2
Try Saving on Your Lunches

Fast food prices have gone up over the last few years, and eating out a nicer restaurant for lunch can cost even more. You can easily save over $100 each month if you stop eating out on your lunch break. You can use several lunch savings ideas to help you cut costs. These include eating leftovers, packing your lunches at the beginning of the week, and doing a lunch exchange at work. All of these ideas can help reduce your food bill. Additionally, it gives you more control over the food that you eat and gives you the option of making healthier meals.  

3
Cook More at Home

If you can stop eating out, you can slash your food bill significantly. This savings adds up as your family grows and your children begin to eat more. You can save money by cooking from scratch at home each night. If you are pressed for time in the evenings, you may want to take advantage of a slow cooker or make ahead meals. Freezer cooking has become very popular for some people. There are recipes that you can find that are not just starchy. You can do your cooking for the week over the weekend or make double when you know the meal will freeze well. If you find yourself in that kind of situation where you need to eat out, use these tips to save.

4
Take the Time to Plan

Grocery shopping
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Menu planning is a key to helping you save money. It helps you create a grocery shopping list that will save you a lot when you shop. You can cut back on the number of trips you make to the grocery store. A menu lets you plan ahead, so you can have easy to prepare meals on your busiest days of the week. If you do not have time to plan a menu, there are several menu-planning services where you get a new menu each week. Most services have several different options you can use. You can check out eMeals, Fresh20, Saving Dinner, and the Six O’clock Scramble. If you have food you love to cook but just need help assembling your grocery list and menu plan, you may want to look into Plan to Eat, which allows you to plan your menu with your own recipes and then it puts together the grocery list for you. 

5
Coupons, Sales and Store Brands

Finally, you need to work to reduce the amount you pay for items at the store. You can do this by carefully choosing the grocery store that you shop at. Some stores charge significantly less for the food when compared to others in the area. You can also use coupons to save money on your groceries. It helps to plan your menu around the sales offered by your store, especially when it comes to the meat that you are planning on using. Do not be afraid to try store brands to see if they will work well for you. Some items the quality is not discernible, while others you may want to spend the extra money. You can also consider using a warehouse club to save money by buying in bulk.