Here are just a few things you can do to pinch the pennies when it comes to everyday spending at the supermarket!
1) Buy a mix of brands, supermarket own and budget range
It might take a bit of trial and error but you’ll soon suss out what products have to be branded and which can be supermarket own or budget ranges. In my house, we have to have Heinz ketchup but when it comes to baked beans I wouldn’t dream of buying Heinz. At 75p a tin it’s a no-go and I much prefer own brand or budget versions which cost a third of the price!
2) Buy frozen herbs, meat and veg
One of my favourite products is frozen chopped garlic and frozen chopped ginger. It saves so much time and effort when cooking and they are a bargain at £1-£2 a pack. I also buy a lot of frozen meat, before you turn your nose up, a lot of supermarkets offer 100% chicken breasts (no added salt or water) and they often work out cheaper. I used to buy fresh chicken breasts in bulk then froze them anyway so this cuts out all the messing about. I also love to have in a few frozen vegetables so I always have healthy sides to go with my meals.
3) If it’s an amazing price, stock up
I drink a lot of coffee and can’t stand supermarket own (I tried and nothing works for me). My coffee of choice is Douwe Egberts which tends to be a bit pricey at around £5-£6 for a 190g jar. Recently it was just £3.50 a jar at Asda so I stocked up on a few! If you find a product you like or use a lot for an amazing price, stock up.
4) Ditch jars of sauce and make your own
A lot of sauces are so easy to make that you can save a lot of money with just a little bit of effort in the kitchen. All you need is a few basic ingredients like chopped tomatoes, passata, dried herbs and spices, and you can make lots of basic sauces from scratch in just a few minutes. The easiest by far are pasta sauces, what’s better is that as you’re making it from scratch it’s also much healthier than a jar sauce.
5) Shop in the world foods section
You can save quite a bit of money in the world foods section especially on spices! For example, Schwartz 28g jars are around £1.50 and supermarket own brand 41g jars are about 80p. However, if you go to the world foods section, you can get 100g bags for as little as 50p-£1! This goes for things like soy sauce and lots of other cooking ingredients too.
6) Use coupons, vouchers and cashback apps
I did a post dedicated to cashback apps a few weeks ago, read it here https://thriftyclair.wordpress.com/2017/04/01/cashback-apps/ It’s also important to remember that using vouchers or coupons is a great way to save and nothing to be embarrassed about, just make sure you have the right product and tell the cashier before you checkout. Websites like caringeveryday and supersavvyme have lots of print at home coupons available.
7) Don’t just buy it because it’s on offer: check it works out cheaper
So many people fall for offers on the ends of aisles or special “value” packs without actually checking the product works out cheaper. Always check the sticker price that says the price per unit; this will tell you if you’re getting a best deal.
8) Use budget shops, markets and supermarkets
I find shopping at Tesco works best for me for convenience but there are some products I won’t buy there like toiletries and cleaning products. I know I can get them cheaper in places like B&M or Home Bargains for at least half the price. I do a grocery shop once a month, a home shop once a month and then just pick up the essentials as and when I run out. Local markets can also be a great place for a few bargain products.
9) Keep track of what you’re spending
There’s nothing worse than getting to the checkout and the total being a lot more than you anticipated. A lot of Tesco stores now have a scan as you shop option which allows you to tot up the total and bag up your shopping on the way round the shop. There’s always the option of keeping a rough count of what you’re putting in your basket on your way round the shop or even better, do the shopping online so you know exactly how much it’s going to cost.
10) Avoid “nipping” into the supermarket for just one thing
We’ve all done it, gone in for one item and come out an hour later with three bags of food, a pair of slippers and a new toy for the dog… If you only need one thing try to go to your local corner shop, items might cost a little more at the local Co op or spar, but I’ve found it’s sometimes better to spend and extra 20p on a loaf of bread rather than fritter away £20 at Asda on random things I didn’t need.
Thrifty Clair x