Is Your Grocery Bill Killing Your Budget?

According to USA Today, the average household in America is spending $4,049 on groceries each year, according to USA Today. This number doesn’t include the $3,154 spent on food eaten outside of the home, in restaurants or picked up in a drive-through line.

Groceries are an unavoidable expense and rising food prices can make it incredibly difficult to stay on budget. With a little creativity and a whole lot of planning, it is possible to save money and cut down on your grocery bill.

Spot the Problem

Time to start saving those receipts! Before attacking grocery spending head-on, it’s a good idea to see which items are keeping spending high. For some households it might be the meat, for others, it could be specialty food items and fresh produce.

In many cases, the simplest approach is to cut back on big spenders first. Plan more meatless recipes and limit the number of high-cost items that wind up in the cart. This will require a little sacrifice and might mean more basic meals with fewer ingredients but it would save serious money over the long term.

Embrace Ugly Produce

In the produce aisle, only the best items find their way to the displays. Grocers know shoppers are looking for blemish-free apples and perfectly shaped potatoes. This means that a lot of food gets discarded if it has bruises or is misshapen but is still perfectly edible. What a waste!

Misfits Market is just one of many programs recapturing ugly produce and connecting consumers who would prefer to save a little money and combat food waste. For a discounted price, members receive a box of ugly produce at the front door as often as they’d like.

Find a Shopping Buddy

Fresh produce is essential to good health, supplying vitamins that are necessary for our bodies to thrive. Don’t sacrifice your well-being in order to save a few bucks! One way to cut back on produce costs is to make a friend with similar tastes and split purchases.

Food waste isn’t necessary, but it has become commonplace. Many items are sold in quantities that are too large for a single person or a couple to finish up before it goes bad. Bundles of carrots, heads of celery and boxes of fresh greens often sit neglected until they’re no longer edible. Splitting the items and the price helps prevent waste and cut back on cost for careful spenders.

Be patient with yourself and learn from your mistakes! It’s difficult to make a quick and tidy change to overspending in the grocery store, but little adjustments each week will create a habit that lasts — and saves.

~ Here’s to Your Financial Health!

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