While the war in Ukraine and supply chain issues have raised the costs of – well, everything – we all still need to eat. Over the years, we’ve learned dozens of ways to lower our food bills. In this post, we want to share ten of our favorites with you.
- Always shop with a list, but stay flexible. For example, instead of listing particular fruits, our list says “fruit”. What we come home with depends on what was on sale. Instead of listing a particular cut of meat, we write “chunk of beef” and buy whatever of that category was cheapest. We then choose recipes that use whatever we bought. Make sure to check the freezer section as well as the fresh counter and compare prices.
- Online shopping is often cheaper than shopping in person. No impulse buys, no picking up the wrong item because you thought it was on sale, and you can see your bill add up as you go to avoid surprises at the check out. Best of all, you can check your kitchen inventory at home while you shop to make sure you actually need more of a particular item.
- Buy store brands and other small no-name brands as much as you can. They are almost always cheaper and usually of very good quality. Hot tip: They are usually hidden away on the top or bottom shelves. The most expensive items will always be at eye level.
- Eat leftovers! Or make smaller portions. When you throw away food, you are throwing away money. If you have kids (or adults) in your household who never finish what is on their plate, put less on their plate next time. If they want more, they can always have seconds. We once hated leftovers and let them go bad in our fridge. Now we pack them away straight into single serve containers and eat them for lunch at work.
- Track the sales at your local supermarkets and learn which stores have better prices on which products. We follow our local chains on Facebook and watch for new sales. Alternate where you shop to get the best prices. Buy enough of the cheaper products to last until the next time you buy from that store.
- Deli and cheese are always cheaper at the counters than prepackaged. Shufersal has several high quality home brand cheeses at the counter for as low as 27 shek/kilo. We buy 3 kg of shredded and sliced cheese at a time and freeze it in 500 gram bags. This is an example of tip #5. We stock up enough inexpensive cheese to last us until our next Shufersal purchase.
- When buying any product take a look at the size of the package. Most stores today also list the price per 100 grams in small print alongside the price. If you don’t see the price per 100 grams, open the calculator on your phone and check. Sometimes the bigger package isn’t actually a bargain.
- If you find a good deal on something you actually use and have the room to store it, consider stocking up if it’s within your budget.
- When buying things on sale, always make sure that the barcode of the item matches the barcode listed on the sign. If they don’t match, the item you picked likely isn’t on sale. This is an easy mistake.
- Use recipes that call for cheaper ingredients. Watch this space. We’ll be sharing plenty here 🙂
What tricks do you use to save money on your grocery bill? What tips from our list will you use in your next shop?
2 responses to “Top 10 ways to be smarter at the supermarket”
Buying food online is okay if you trust the person doing the ‘picking and packing’ at the supermarket. We’ve been disappointed in the past, and make sure to go to the store in person for SOME of the items which could easily be bruised (e.g. bananas and apples).
Otherwise it’s a great list! Thanks!
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