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Food is such a big chunk of our monthly budgets, especially if you have a family. Plus, it is one of the hardest ones to manage because it can change from week to week.
If you want to truly embrace frugal food, then your first step has to be creating a meal plan. This is your map to cheaper food.
Once you know the food you need for your family to get through the week then you will know what you need to get when you head out to the shops.
It also prevents impulse food buying because you fancy something. If it is on the meal plan, then chances are you are going to eat it.
Shop your cupboards
Before you hit the shops to buy more food, take a look in your cupboards. You might be surprised what a little bit of creativity can achieve.
Use what you have in your cupboard first before you buy more food. You can check out Pinterest to help you come up with some new recipes.
Have some lazy meals ready
Even with the best meal plan, you can have days where life goes a bit wild and you find yourself either tired or short on time.
Therefore, it is a good plan to have some quick and tasty meals in the freezer. This will stop you reaching for the phone and ordering a takeaway.
It could be a few leftovers from your favourite dishes, or it could be frozen pizzas or chicken nuggets. Just make sure that they are yummy and minimal effort.
Plan your snacks
We have all had that moment when we are shopping where we decide that we going to save money by not buying snacks. Because they aren’t good for you anyway, right?
You then find yourself heading to Tesco Express twice a day for chocolate. Just me? But you get what I am saying. You need to plan for the snacks otherwise they will cost you more.
Yes, you can plan healthier and cheaper snacks, but you need to buy them when you get the rest of your shopping.
Buy what is cheap
When you are meal planning there can be a temptation to choose meals that you fancy, but these aren’t always the best value.
Instead, look for the food that costs less. This is typically in-season fruits and vegetables and with meats: frozen chicken on the bone.
Plan your meals around these cheaper foods. You can still eat things you like, but you are planning them around the price rather than your impulses.
How do you save money on food?
What steps have you taken to save money on food? Do you have any extreme lengths that you have gone to? Let me know and I will add them to the list.
Disclaimer: Remember the information you read here does not represent advice. Any ideas or suggestions are just that and may not work for you. Read the full disclaimer here.