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5 Tips to Save Money When Meal Planning

1. Make a List!

One of the best ways to spend less at the grocery store is to make a shopping list! By knowing what you are making, and shopping with a list, you will end up with fewer items in your cart, and less waste.

Writing a list doesn’t have to be hard. Keep a notepad or dry erase board on your fridge or type things into the note section of your phone as you run out of them.

This way, when it’s shopping time you only have to add the items to the list that you need to complete your meals! If you use your phone notes, it’s especially easy to take with you and to modify it!

2. Find Discount Grocery Stores and Shop Them

This might seem like a no-brainer. But one easy way to save more on groceries is by shopping at a store that charges less.

You can choose a store that you can buy in bulk and save like Costco or Sam’s club. You can also choose a store like Aldi that keeps cost low by offering no or minimal name brand items.

Find these kinds of stores in your area, figure out what items on your shopping list you can buy at which store, and then go shop at them!

3. Coupon

Now, this is a wonderful method for many people. It can save you lots of money. Personally, I have tried couponing, and I have several problems with it.

One is the time. It takes a lot of time to find them, clip them, and sort them. My second issue with couponing is that I never remember to bring the dang things. If I do by chance have a coupon I will use, I just stick it in my wallet so I don’t lose it, and I’ll actually have it on me.

I just prefer to shop at stores that have lower prices from the get-go.

However, if you do coupon, you can save lots of money by pre-selecting the coupons for items you have on your list, and then only bringing those coupons with you! That way you’re still sticking to your grocery list and saving money!

4. Download Store Apps

Many stores nowadays have apps. Download them. Many of the stores’ apps are filled with coupons, discounts, weekly ads and circulars, and other money-saving information.

I personally have the Military Commissary coupon clipping app, the Ebates App, the Target app, and the Aldi app on my phone because this is where I tend to shop the most. I love my Ebates app because not only does it work in-store, it also works online! At Target alone, in the last two months, I have saved over $25 dollars on items I would have purchased anyway!

5. Don’t Shop Hungry

Have you made the mistake of shopping hungry? I know that when I shop on an empty stomach everything looks delicious. It seems as if I end up grabbing all the things that look good, and my cart ends up chock full of random, mostly snack items.

If you do need to shop and you can’t eat a full meal-try at least having a snack before you enter the store. You might find yourself grabbing less food on impulse.

If you want to meal plan, and don’t know where to start- try my free meal planning guide and weekly meal planning sheet here!

Hopefully, some of these tips help you to save money at the grocery store and allow you to live a more balanced life.

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