I thought I'd write a post on grocery shopping and how to make your weekly shop cheaper. Food is one area where everyone spends, but not everybody really takes notice of what they are buying.
We have some friends who are the same age as us, who don't understand why they never have any money. This weekend, I spent some time with them, and also went food shopping with me and, to be honest, I was amazed. They went round the supermarket, just popping any random thing that took their fancy in the shopping cart.
At the end, I asked them what kind of meals they were going to have this week, and my friend answered "Oh, I don't know. We'll work that out when we're going to eat."
How can you possibly go shopping for food (they spent over £80 in that shop) when you don't know what you need, what you're going to eat during the week, and what you already have in at home?
My tips are:
- Plan your menu. I can't stress this enough - knowing what you're going to make during the week is helpful for two reasons. 1 - you know what you're having so that you don't have to think about it during the week. 2 - you know what meals you're having so you know what ingredients you need to get.
- Eat seasonal. There's a reason why strawberries/raspberries/pineapples are really expensive in January - because they're not in season. Eat things that are seasonal, because they tend to be cheaper.
- Go veggie. Have one or twos meals during the week that don't include meat, as it's healthier and also lots cheaper. Maybe have a soup night once a week, again another cheap, healthy option.
- Check what you have before you go. Seriously, my friends didn't know if they needed anything, because they hadn't got a clue what was in their kitchen at home. Before you plan, check and see if anything needs eating up. That goes onto the menu first. Then, once you've written your menu, check and see what you have at home first - I bet it's more than you think!
- Think about cost of food vs. calorie value. This may seem a bit strange, but some things are cheap and easy to cook, and very good for you at the same time! Take porridge oats - get the basic ones as they're pretty much all the same. Oats are really good for you, and yet they don't cost too much. There's so many varieties you can do with oats - breakfast is an obvious one, but use them to bulk out meals too. Bananas are always on our list too, as they're cheap and nutritionally very good too. Same goes for eggs,
I hope that's helpful to someone. I've been to get some food today - a mixture of the market and the supermarket, and I've spent £21.32 on our weekly shop. Our menu for the week is:
today - roast pork with the trimmings
Monday - chicken fajitas
Tuesday - pizza
Wednesday - coq au vin with rice
Thursday - pasta with sauce
Friday - fish and chips
I love food.