When you break down your household spending budget, food ranks highly on the list of expenses. It may not be your priciest monthly expense – that’s transport for most UK families, but food spending no doubt makes the top three places on a ranked list of money flowing through your home.
With so much of your money spent at the supermarket, food costs are fertile ground for reducing your household expenses. Fortunately, savings are available for savvy UK shoppers committed to cutting costs at the market. The following tips can help you save money at your favourite UK supermarkets.
Check Your Pride
Shopping the reduced section leaves some buyers unsettled. If you’re serious about saving money at the supermarket, it’s time to set by your fear of markdowns. You won’t always find what you’re looking for in the reduced section, but you’ll sometimes make worthwhile savings, just by remembering to check for markdowns.
Fresh fruits and vegetables are in-season treats, but frozen versions are just as nutritious and easier to manage at home. Buying frozen fruits and vegetables is often cheaper than fresh, particularly on buy, and the frozen food lasts longer, so it can help you reduce food waste.
Meat and fish account for a large share of your food shop expense. As a result, buying and freezing proteins can drastically reduce your monthly spend. For bankable results, watch for your favourites on buy, or purchase discounted bulk packs to divide into freezable portions at home.
In addition to stocking up, your freezer can also help you upsize food production for savings. Why not double a recipe and freeze the leftovers when ingredients are on buy? And stashing a few frozen meals can save you the cost of takeaway dinners, on evenings when the family’s hungry, but time’s run short.
Plan for Savings
Meal planning accounts for all the food flowing through your home, so taking time to chart weekly meals can help you reduce waste and unnecessary food spending. By looking ahead, it’s possible to consider your family’s schedule and other factors influencing household eating habits. If it’s a week on the go, planning allows you to focus on meals that hold up well and give family members nourishing, easy to heat dining options, as they come and go. When everyone’s available to share a meal, having a plan lets you enjoy the time with family, rather than sweating kitchen details.
Planning for food costs is part of a comprehensive financial scheme that helps families keep pace with spending demands. In much the same way people plan for other types of household spending, working out meals stretches earnings and keeps cash flowing smoothly. Even well-laid plans can fall apart, so emergency savings and short-term loans are sometimes used to bridge the gap between paychecks. Lenders’ rates and terms are available to compare online, and you can start the application process the moment you select a preferred lender.
Avoid Prepared Meals
Ready meals are the ultimate convenience, but you’ll pay a premium price for their ease. If the results were fantastic, it’d be easy to dismiss the high price of ready meals. But prepared foods have a well-earned reputation for their higher salt content and other unhealthy ingredients. Scratch cooking, while not always convenient, is a cost-efficient approach, giving you total control of the ingredients and food handling practices that go into your food.
Another way you pay for other people’s time is buying shredded, sliced, and blended foods, which typically cost many times more than their component ingredients. It’s easy enough to take the same steps at home, and when the kids are old enough to contribute, you can put them to work in the kitchen, helping prepare food.
Supermarket spending takes a big bite out of your earnings each month, so it makes sense to save on food, whenever possible. These are only a few of the accessible money-saving moves that can help you reduce the price of every shop.