Grocery Budget

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      I have know the poor days as a single twenty year old who only had 60 dollars a month to spend on food (less than my bus fare!). But, when you grow your own family and acquire an adult companion- the game can change. You can have your concerns- but if they aren’t shared (as in a family effort) you can always feel like you’re fighting a losing battle.

      So- first step would be to have a family discussion to outline the whys and the goals so everything makes sense to everyone.

      Here are some tips I’ve accumulated: Other than getting freebies- which I totally encourage…

      Produce: Grow as much as you can, otherwise this will be a big part of your food bill. YKWIM. If you spend a lot on produce and no one eats it or it goes bad, don’t buy as much.

      I think canned veggies will do you get in a weird habit of letting your fresh food go bad habitually.

      Meats: on hillbilly housewife, the lady calculated that you don’t get a better oz for oz deal on leaner meats- so go for that higher fat content as you can “discard” the cooked fat and end up with more “meat” and change in your pocket. Buying in bulk for meat is always a good idea especially when on sale/clearance. I don’t know how many ranchers grow “generic” cows or pigs- so just go generic.

      The next best thing to ground beef is ground turkey- usually 50% less in cost. Final strategy is to stretch out your meat usage- make a pound last two meals instead of one.

      Dairy: Buy on sale b/c you can freeze. Or- MYO yogurt & yogurt cheese. You *can* free milk!

      So go crazy buying it on sale. I found on a website (sorry- I can’t “cite the site” but I am acknowledging that it isn’t my original idea) that you can buy a gallon of whole milk- split it b/t 2 gallon jugs and fill them the rest of the way with milk and you’d produce 2% milk at a fraction (1/2) the price! Remember I said you can freeze your multiplying milk reserves.

      Starches/noodles/rice/Beans: They are your friends! They are usually the cheapest bulk (belly filler) foods out there. They also happen to be cheap to buy.

      And even cheaper to make.

      Cleaning/beauty products: a lot are “multi purpose” and not advertised as such. Ammonia, baking powder, lemon juice, vinegar, alcohol work fine for most things. You can dilute most stuff and that will bring down the “cost” for the item overall.

      Don’t spend on stuff that you don’t enjoy or that you won’t even use. Making your own stuff is a fun way to make a “family” activity out of most mundane stuff. Remember that most products out there were great “quickfixes” that people just like you thought of and decided to bank off of…

      so don’t buy in! The stores aren’t in business to save you money. Make saving money a goal/challenge/game.

      It’s all worth it.
      The overall strategy is to use less money to survive w/o going to the store as often. It’s those “I just need to get eggs milk and stamps” that end up being the $60 non necessary grocery trips!

      Otherwise: try angelfoodministries.com or SHARE (like https://www.sharecolordo.com) that offer discounts on quality food.

      Hope I helped a little.

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