Save On Groceries Without Clipping Coupons


Wow! Grocery prices have soared recently. And to be honest, I’m not a fan. I have three children, who against my admonishment, insist on eating at least three meals a day. The audacity!

The time has come to start paying closer attention to how much we’re spending on food, because continuing to spend nearly 25% of my income on food is not sustainable!

I have my limits when it comes to savings. Working a full-time job and running a fitness company and two blogs means I’m always busy. I also love spending time with my husband and my children, so painstakingly clipping coupons isn’t an option. Not gonna happen.

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Here’s what I do to save money on groceries without spending hours scouring ads and clipping coupons:

  1. Sign up for grocery pick-up or delivery. This has saved me a lot of money just by eradicating impulse purchases. I started with Walmart grocery pick-up a few years ago. It was a total game changer. Once I built faith in their ability to select the groceries I ordered, I graduated to Walmart+ grocery delivery and never looked back. As an Enneagram 7, I usually don’t think about purchasing groceries for the week until Monday morning when I’ve already started my work day. I pay for the monthly subscription that also gives me several other valuable perks.
  2. Make a list and stick to it. If it’s not on the list, don’t buy it. Unless it’s something that would require a separate trip to the store or can’t wait another week. Otherwise, add it to the list for next week.
  3. If you shop at the store, go alone. Three or four other opinions will hike up your grocery bill and take twice as long.
  4. Plan ahead. I’m not a “meal prep” kind of person, but I have learned to plan ahead when it comes to family dinners. When I neglect to do this, we end up eating out. To be clear, I love eating out at restaurants and it’s a big part of our grocery budget, but when I know we’ve done it only out of convenience and because I wasn’t proactive about groceries, I always regret it.
  5. Use a meal prep service. This one is new to me. My Facebook friend Roxanne owns a meal prep service called Easy Freezy. For years, I thought, “If I still have to add the meat and other key ingredients, , how is this saving me time and/or money?” I didn’t really get the concept. THEN it finally occurred to me how brilliant it was. I don’t use it for meals I’m willing to make on my own. But for specialty meals where I don’t want to purchase a full container of a not-likely-to-use-again ingredient like smoked paprika or fish sauce, it’s a great option. With Easy Freezy meals, you just add a few ingredients you probably already have in your fridge and voila – a delicious dinner is ready and on the table. Easy Freezy researches and test the recipes, releases a new variety of options every month, and lets you pick only the meals you’ll love.
  6. Go meatless for a meal or two. I usually recommend women double the protein in meals. It ensures they get the adequate protein to support muscle growth, fat loss, and overall health. But with grocery prices on the rise, it doesn’t hurt to look at alternative sources for protein and skip the meat for a meal or two each week. Think red beans and rice. Beans and cornbread. Taco bowls. Burritos. Vegetable soup. You can just Google “best meatless dinner options” for some great ideas.
  7. Try a grocery saver app. I recently rediscovered one called ibotta. A colleague told me about it years ago, but it felt clunky and confusing. At the time it wasn’t worth it to me. They’ve come a long way! Now it seamlessly connects to several places I already shop (Walmart, Amazon, Costco, Walgreens, and more!) and gives me cash back on products I already purchase. As with anything, don’t purchase products that aren’t already on your list.
  8. Plan ahead so you can buy in bulk. As previously mentioned, I don’t like meal prep at all. So my approach to meals is always going to be the laziest / easiest / most efficient. When you plan out which meals you want to cook, you can buy those ingredients in bulk. I usually only do this with versatile dry goods (pasta, beans, etc.) and meats.
  9. Make a double batch and freeze half for later. Or use it for lunches later in the week. Don’t do this unless you already know your family will love the meal. More than once, I thought my kids would love something and then I was the one eating the leftovers for the rest of the week.
  10. Diversify where you shop. I stick with Walmart delivery for 90-95% of my grocery shopping. As a Walmart+ subscriber, I can upgrade to express (same day) delivery and get my entire grocery order within a few hours of purchase. But if you have a little time to spare, compare prices at Costco or Sam’s Club, Aldi, Winco, and other discount chains and see if the savings are worth the trip across town.

This isn’t a comprehensive list, but this is what helps me stick to my budget and helps me avoid stressing about how much we’re spending on food. I’m always eager to hear how other families stretch their food budget, so if you have helpful tips, please comment below and share them with me!

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