The cost of living is only increasing, and that also means that food is getting more expensive.
You may find that each month you are seriously overspending on food, whether that’s eating out, ordering in, or just buying the wrong kind of food at supermarkets.
Knowing how to food budget can really make a difference when it comes to saving money, and there are lots of tips and tricks that can help you do this.
This article will give you some tips on how you can food budget, discuss preparing your grocery shop, how to shop, and how to prepare your food.
Preparing For The Grocery Store
Before grabbing your grocery bags and heading for the store, in order to prepare yourself for a budget, you need to prepare yourself for the grocery store.
Take A Look At What You Currently Spend
Before you come up with a food budget, it is important to understand what you are currently spending on food. Try and keep grocery store receipts to get a picture of what kind of foods you buy and where you can make some changes.
Get A Loyalty Card
Getting a loyalty card can help you build up points that will then result in a voucher. This is a great way to receive discounts every so often and will lead to you spending less.
Take A Look In Your Freezer, Fridge, And Pantry
It’s very easy to run off to the grocery store and pick up a bunch of things you forgot you already had at home.
Therefore, before your shop, look in all your pantries and cupboards, as well as your refrigerator and freezer, to be absolutely sure you need the things on your list.
Use All Your Leftovers First
As you check your kitchen cupboards and other areas, ensure you don’t let any leftovers go to waste. Use them first, and think of what meals you can make with them before buying more food.
Plan Your Meals
As you write down your grocery list, plan your weekly meals. Think of breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and only buy what you’ll need to make those meals.
That way, you won’t overspend on unnecessary items, and you won’t waste food either.
At The Grocery Store
Now that you’ve planned out what you’re going to buy, you’re ready to head to the grocery store. There are a few things to consider to stay focused and avoid the shiny toys that are calling your name!
Don’t Shop Hungry
This may sound silly, but you should always eat before heading to the grocery store, as strolling through the isles with a growling stomach will have you reaching for all kinds of unnecessary items.
Studies support this claim, and results have shown that people will spend more money at the store if they are hungry.
Look At The Reduced Sections
Never be afraid of buying food from the reduced sections. Grocery stores will normally reduce the price of items that are expiring soon, so have a look and see what you can use that evening or put in your freezer.
Buy Food You Can Cook From Scratch
It is much cheaper to buy raw ingredients than pre-prepared foods. It is also a lot healthier. These are foods that you can keep stock of in your pantries and are easy to use in meals.
These include foods such as pasta, rice, lentils, flour, oil, eggs, milk, and cheese.
Opt For The Supermarket Brands
More often than not, there is never much of a difference in quality between a big brand and a supermarket brand.
Opting for supermarket-branded food will save you a lot of money, and you usually won’t miss out on quality.
Preparing Your Food
Now that you’ve bought all the food you need, it’s important to understand how to prepare it in the best way possible so nothing goes to waste.
This is the one thing that will save you money and will prevent you from wasting food. Choose one day each week (we recommend Sundays) and plan out each meal for each day that week.
Then, spend this day cooking in bulk and separating each meal into different Tupperware.
This is very useful if you have a busy schedule and don’t have too much time to cook. You can also place some of them in the freezer and defrost them in the morning or at night before you’re going to eat them.
However, you must meal prep the food you enjoy. This will ensure that you will eat it, and it won’t go to waste.
Be Mindful Of Portion Size
It’s very easy to go overboard when it comes to portion size (especially when you’re hungry), but that is how food goes to waste.
Be honest with yourself about how much food you will eat to avoid throwing too much out.
Pack Your Lunch
While it is tempting and easy to buy lunch on your lunch break from work or school, packing your lunch with food from home is much cheaper and healthier!
Prepare your lunches on Sundays as you prepare the rest of your meals. You can also use any leftovers from dinner to avoid unnecessary waste!
To conclude, anyone can learn how to food budget. All it takes is making a few changes to the way you grocery shop and the way you prepare food.
You can save money and avoid wasting food by using up leftovers, taking note of what needs buying, and preparing your food for the week in advance.
It is also much healthier to prepare home-cooked meals in advance, as this will stop you from buying unnecessary pre-made lunches that aren’t necessarily good for you and will cost you money.
We hope this article on How To Food Budget has helped you understand how important a budget is when it comes to food.