How To Reduce Your Grocery Bill: 10 Steps To Cut Right Back

Last Updated on 18th September 2020 by Tuppenny

Your grocery bill can be way too high if you shop wrong.

Learn how to reduce your grocery bill and you can make some serious savings. So how do you make those savings?

Why pay more for your shopping if you don’t need to?

Many of your bills are fixed, you don’t have any wriggle room in them. Bills such as your mortgage or rent, insurances, utility bills.

But what you spend on food can vary enormously.

So let’s look at what you can do to start reducing grocery costs.

(This post contains affiliate links. If you click on a link and make a purchase, I may make a small commission at no extra cost to you. You can read more here)

shopping cart in store aisle

Quick Money making tip

Scan your receipt through Fetch

Fetch Rewards is a free grocery savings app that rewards you just for snapping pictures of your receipts. That’s really it.

It won’t reduce your grocery bill but you get free rewards on groceries on thousands of products every day, no matter where you get your groceries.

Just scan your receipts to receive rewards.

Use code “APREWARDS” to redeem 3K points!

advert for fetch rewards app

In The UK? Scan Your Receipts Through The Storewards App

The Storewards app works in the same way as Fetch, all you need to do is snap pictures of your receipts.

Even better though, it allows receipts from all purchases made (in-store and online), up to 20 receipts a week, not just groceries. Plus you get a daily bonus just for logging into the app.

Use referral code l8iph to get 250 bonus coins when you sign up today.

How To Reduce Grocery Bill In 10 Simple Steps

1. You’re Going To The Wrong Store

Seriously! There are grocery stores and then there are grocery stores.

Choose the wrong one and you can end up paying more for the exact same product.

Choose the right one and you can reduce your grocery bill right then and there.

Some stores might ‘feel’ nicer than others, but seriously when money is the issue then go with the cheapest store that you can buy your products from.

2. You Don’t Meal Plan

Meal planning done right is one of the best tools in your quest to learn how to reduce your grocery bill.

Using a meal plan saves both time and money.

Time –  because you no longer waste time trying to work out what to make for tonight’s dinner, you get home and get started.

Money – no longer will you need to resort to takeout or drive thru because you cannot decide what to cook.

But meal planning done wrong can end up with both wasted time and wasted money.

This is where the $5 meals plan saves the day. 

No need to struggle to fill out that cute meal plan printable you downloaded.

No need to try and come up with yet another week’s worth of meals that the family don’t turn their noses up at.

$5 meals plan have you covered. Not only do you get a weekly meal plan each week, you also get the shopping list of ingredients.

No wasted money buying groceries you don’t use. No wasted money getting takeout.

Spend just $5 a month to get a different meal plan sent to you every week. There is also a gluten-free option if you need it.

Try it for free with a 14 day FREE trial to kick start your money saving when you use this service.

Oh, and if you are in the UK you can definitely use this!

Start my free trial

3. You Buy Too Much

I can be guilty of this.

When there are only the 2 of us most of the time (DD2 is away at university) why is my grocery budget for 2 often blown out of the water?

Because I buy too much.

I struggle to pass up a ‘bargain’.

Bargain means either a reduced price item that needs to be frozen straight away or a buy one get one free offer.

Problem is, we eat roughly the same amount of food regardless of what we buy (pigging out days excepted!).

So when I buy more either my freezer stores mount up or I run the risk of throwing away food.

Approximately one third of all food in the world produced for humans is wasted. How shocking is that?

I don’t want to add to that figure so keeping control on how much I buy is important.

Check out my post on how to reduce food waste to keep your wastage to a minimum: 

How To Save Money By Cutting Your Food Waste To A Minimum

For more help, advice and tactics to completely overhaul your food bill click here:

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4. You Buy One Use Products

These days you can buy a huge range of convenience products and I don’t mean food.

Products that are one use only so use and bin them. But they come at a cost.

Products such as paper towels, kitchen wet wipes and dryer sheets.

All perform a function that years ago was performed by products that you washed and reused.

Or didn’t use at all in the case of dryer sheets because people didn’t have tumble dryers they used something else – a clothes line.

Instead of constantly buying one-use products you should invest in their long life replacements which will save you money in the long run.

Products such as:

Microfiber cloths – I’ve been using these for years instead of paper towels and wet wipes

Silicone Storage bags – I use these instead plastic bags as a long term and eco friendly alternative

Outdoor rotary line – dump the dryer sheets and the tumble dryer and dry for free instead, even on cold days

Indoor drying rack – as above but I use one of these inside on wet days. Remember to create an air flow with an open window.

boxes of prepared food

One Use Products

There are some one-use products that you probably will keep on using, like toilet paper although you can of course use reusable towels for this as well.

Same as you can buy reusable nappies/diapers, you don’t need to buy disposable nappies.

Although I do understand why you might, especially if you work outside of the home.

couple checking food shopping receipt

5. You Don’t Make Your Freezer Work For You

Fill your freezer with ready meals and you will never go hungry or not have a delicious meal to eat when you get home late.

Of course I’m not talking shop bought ready meals, I’m talking meals you have prepared yourself for busy nights.

But what to make, and how to save time both during the week and on your precious days off?

This is where Myfreezeasy can help, it is a personalized freezer meal plan to suit your time, tastes and budget.

Make 10 meals in just an hour! With recipes that require little to no pre-cooking, you can quickly and efficiently get them ready to freeze.

Myfreezeasy meal plans come with videos, shopping lists and simple to follow directions to get your bulk meal prep done in no time at all.

You can try Myfreezeasy for free when you join the Freezer Cooking 101 Workshop

You get a sample freezer meal plan for free!

Pick your own freezer-friendly recipes and serving sizes so you are only making what your family needs.

Myfreezeasy is not a done for your meal plan, it’s a program where you are always in control.

Choose the freezer meals you want to prep with their simple drag and drop tool.

You can even use their mobile apps to do this. Do your choosing while you are queuing some place else.

There are new recipes and themed meal plans every month along with recipes, shopping lists and instructional videos.

All the freezer meals are budget friendly recipes.

But not only are they budget friendly, having a stash of freezer meals means you need never resort to takeout and you cut right back on food waste.

Free Freezer Cooking 101 Workshop

Join the Free Freezer Cooking 101 Workshop and learn about the benefits of freezer cooking, what freezes well (and what doesn’t), how to prep, thaw and cook your meals.

You’ll also get all these great freebies:

  • Free freezer meal plan to test out
  • List of what to freeze and what not to
  • Printable freezer inventory list
  • Printable most popular meal plan and shopping list
close up of woman looking into camera holding up a pizza directly in front

5. Your Empty Stomach Hits Your Grocery Bill

We’ve all done this, try and squeeze in the weekly shop on your way home from work when your stomach is empty and growling.

Or when you are tired and hungry.

But you do so at the risk of a high grocery bill.

When you are hungry you buy more, period.

If your hungry times are the perfect time to go to the grocery store because of travel or general life then buy a snack as soon as you get to the store (or plan ahead and take one with you).

A health snack of a couple of pieces of fruit won’t send your average grocery bill sky high but will keep the hunger pangs at bay and allow you to shop according to your budget.

Related reading: 13 Killer Ways to Save Money on Groceries – Save Hundreds Every Month

promotional image for grocery budget course

6. You Can’t Steer Clear Of Convenience Food

You will always pay a premium for food items that mean you have less to do in the kitchen.

You can buy sliced and chopped vegetables, even sliced onions.

But you will pay more for these products than their whole equivalent.

Spend the extra 5 minutes it takes to chop a few vegetables each night and take convenience products off your food shopping list.

Related reading: 18 Things We Cut From Our Food Shopping List To Save Big Money

cupboard shelves full of food packages

7. You’re A Sucker For Premium Brands

Have you ever seen advert after advert for the value range of your local grocery store?

No.

And you won’t because adverts and marketing cost money. Money that gets added onto the price of the products.

Whereas premium brand adverts are on TV every day. Premium brands such as:

  • Cola
  • Bread
  • Coffee
  • Cheese

I am sure these products taste great but at sometimes double, triple or even quadruple the price of the stores own brand or value range, that taste comes at a price.

Many products are made by one factory who produces the same product for both the premium brand company AND all the grocery stores.

Sometimes there are tiny differences in the product and sometimes there really is no difference in recipe at all.

Check the ingredients list and compare if you don’t believe me!

Grocery own brands are great value for money and invariably taste just as good.

Maybe a little different but good just the same.

Occasionally there are products where you prefer the store brand to value range or premium brand to store brand.

But you only get to know this if you check out the other ranges and try them.

Related reading: 30 Of The Best Frugal Foods To Buy When You’re Broke

grocery cart with food in it to signify grocery bill

8. You Use Your Local Grocery Store As A One Stop Shop

Grocery stores don’t just sell groceries. These days you can also buy clothes, electrical items and garden equipment to name just a few.

But buying these items from your grocery store instead of shopping around for the right product at the right price means you will pay a premium for them.

Convenience costs.

Yes it might be convenient to pick up a new watering can when you buy your groceries but you will likely pay more if you do.

9. You Are A Slave To Dates

Being a slave to food expiry dates is a sure fire way to keep your grocery bill high.

Especially if you also stockpile too much food. There are a variety of different food dates and it’s worth knowing what they are.

Sell by date means just that, when the store will stop selling it.

It won’t instantly burst into flames at one minute past midnight nor will it be full of deadly bacteria then.

The product is usually good for a few more days.

Use by dates are for food safety and apparently we shouldn’t eat anything which has exceeded it’s use by date.

I’m fussy about use by dates on fish and some meat but less so on other products such as milk, cheese, yogurt. I follow the sniff test on these.

Do what is right for you and your family.

Best before dates – again think of the wording here, best before doesn’t mean it’s off the following day, it just might (might) not be quite as good as before.

Crisps might not be quite so crisp but still tasty a week after their best before date.

We recently ate crisps 8 months after their best before date and they tasted exactly the same as if they were in date. They also hadn’t lost any of their crispness.

Crisps don’t usually last long in our house but these got lost behind a box!

woman in grocery store pushing trolley to signify how to reduce grocery bill

10. You Shop Too Often

It’s very easy to say you are popping to the shop for just one thing.

But all too often you come away with a bag full of groceries and $20 lighter.

When you know are spending too much, how you shop can be just as expensive as what you buy. 

Your average grocery bill will drop significantly when you resolve to only go food shopping just once a week.

It helps you concentrate your mind on what you need to buy when you do go shopping and stops all those $20 top ups.

promotional image for grocery budget course

How to Reduce Grocery Bill Average Right Down

When you need to learn how to save money on groceries focus don’t just focus on buying less foods.

Focus on the things above and I guarantee you will save money.

If you are already not doing any of the above (go you) then these bonus tips will also help you make savings on your groceries.

stacked glass jars with dried pulses, beans and pasta inside to signify how to reduce grocery bill

Bonus Tips To Reduce Your Grocery Bill

  • Stick to tap water as your go to liquid, buy a couple of beverages but not a huge range
  • Don’t bring your kids and/or partner to the shops, go alone so you’re not distracted from your money saving mission (I’ve calculated that Mr2p always adds 10% to my grocery bill when he accompanies me – he’s not allowed to come very often!)
  • Don’t rush through the store, take your time so you get exactly what you need at the right price
  • Organize your food cupboard so things don’t go out of date before you use them
  • Don’t overeat – many of us can easily do this and all food costs money
  • Eat healthier by buying fresh ingredients instead of prepared meals
  • Buy in season
  • Beware BOGOFs (buy one get one free) and 50% deals – you don’t always save money you just buy more
  • Buy reduced priced items (my favorite tip but comes with a health warning – don’t fill up your freezer with reduced priced items – you’ve still spent money and not eaten the food!)

With all these tips I am confident you will be able to reduce your grocery bill.

You just need to decide what you will do with all the money you will save!

Top Tip – Subscribe to the 7 day Grocery Budget Bootcamp and learn how to take back control of your spending on groceries in just a week!

Come and follow me on Pinterest for more money saving hints and frugal tips!

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supermarket trolley in aisle (grocery bill) to signify how to reduce grocery bill
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