How do I eat on $100 a month? I will tell you some tips for how I manage my grocery bill. This $100 a month category includes all of the food I purchase at grocery stores along with some occasional household supplies, laundry detergent, toilet paper, etc. I have a separate row in my budget for “eating out”. I eat breakfast, lunch, dinner and a couple of snacks throughout the day. I do not starve myself or eat Ramen and PB & J’s. I am able to eat healthily and consume items such as chicken, pork, fish and beef. Lastly, I am only supporting ONE person with this grocery budget, no kids or anyone else.
Here are my 5 Keys for a $100/month grocery bill:
1) Make a list: I make a list with all of the items I need beforehand. This prevents impulse shopping or the purchasing of WANTS instead of NEEDS. Always make a list!
2) Only buy items on sale: If chicken is on sale for $1.99/lb, I buy many pounds of it and place it in separate Ziploc bags in the freezer. Additionally, I buy fruits and veggies that are on sale. It might be apples and carrots one week, strawberries and cucumbers the next week.
3) Go generic: I will be the first to agree that some generic products do not taste as good as the original (i.e. Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup), but find out what generics are the same for you. Whether it is nuts, chips or cereal, find out where you can save that extra dollar.
4) More prep time equals more food: I can buy a box of dry brown rice for the same price I can buy four microwaveable pouches. The difference is that the box of dry rice yields twice as many servings as the “convenient” pouches.
5) Don’t waste food: This is a big one for me. Whatever I buy, I eat. I never let food go bad. Google a recipe for food close to its expiration date or something that didn’t taste as good as you thought. Any food that you throw away is harmful to your budget.
These are 5 things I do to keep my grocery bill low every month. See if you are able to incorporate any of these into your shopping trips. If you have any additional tips, leave them in the comments section below.
Budget Smart, Invest Wise