The first step in slashing food dollars is to plan ahead. Most shoppers waste money on impulse buys or last-minute trips to the supermarket for missing ingredients. When you’re ready to put the skids on wasteful cash flow, try these purpose-driven strategies.
- Sit down with supermarket sale circulars before heading to stores. Plan out menus
based on specials and in-season produce.
- Always make out a shopping list. Shop and stick to the list.
- Clip coupons from newspapers, magazines, or the Internet for products that you
buy routinely. Take advantage of double coupons days or in-store specials.
- Consider stocking up on frequently used items while they’re on sale.
- Go through cabinets routinely to use up canned and boxed staples.
- Buy in bulk when the savings prove good.
While eating ethnic is a start, the biggest way to reduce food bills is to adopt a more vegetarian eating style, at least occasionally. Meat, poultry, and fish account for the lion’s share of most grocery bills. You don’t need to give them up altogether, just cut back.
- Make the usual roast chicken but put out a wide assortment of vegetables, potatoes, and sides. Aim to fill two thirds of the plate with side dishes and just one-third with meat.
- Shop for less expensive cuts of meat and use them in stews or soups.
- Serve casseroles as the main course rather than dishing up meat and potatoes.
- Stretch meat by adding grains and vegetables to dishes. Add pasta noodles or bulgur to chicken salad. Mix ground beef and beans to fill tacos rather than using meat alone.
- Serve breakfast for dinner. Omelets, pancakes and French toast are inexpensive entrees.
- Try going meatless at one meal each week. Start with simple, well-loved items like macaroni and cheese. Branch out to ethnic recipes like lentil dals or pasta e fagioli.
I found this article on allrecipes.com. To see more of the article go here: http://allrecipes.com//HowTo/cheaper-meal-planning/Detail.aspx.