Quick hacks on how to reduce your grocery bill

If you’re feeling the pinch these days at the supermarket check-out, you’re certainly not alone – households in general across the country are grappling with a sharp rise in prices.

Recent research shows that the cost of living for the average household increased by 7.7% in the September 2022 quarter (when compared with the same quarter in the previous year). When comparing the September 2022 quarter to the June 2022 quarter, food rose 4.1% (fruit and vegetables were up 17 percent).

And if you’re retired and budgeting for things like rent, medical bills and insurance along with groceries, you may be watching your pennies a bit more right now. The good news is, there are ways to cut costs – especially on food. Here are our top 15 hacks.

Reduce your grocery bill before leaving the house

Cost-cutting starts with your pantry and garden! Here’s how.

1. Shop your pantry

So often, you’ll find that you have ingredients you can use up in your pantry, fridge or freezer - so take stock of what you have on hand before hitting the supermarket.

2. Plan meals in advance

Browsing recipe books, planning meals and writing a shopping list can be essential when you’re trying to stick to a budget and avoid any impulse purchases.

3. Grow your own

Find a sunny plot in your yard and start growing pots of herbs, fruits and veg. Homegrown produce tastes better and you could save heaps by being able to take them off your grocery bill! 

4. Cook in bulk and freeze

Your freezer can be your best friend when you’re on a budget – so get into the habit of cooking larger batches and freezing leftovers for dinner on another night. This may also help to avoid the trap of ordering takeaway food when you are too tired to cook at the end of a long day.

5. Join a food co-op

Find a local, bulk-buying group – they typically purchase large quantities of seasonal food and household items in bulk at a discounted price. You could pay a flat fee for a ‘box’.

Saving while you’re at the supermarket

With a little planning, the check-out won’t hurt your hip pocket. Here are our tips.

1. Shop around

It’s all too easy to dash into our nearest supermarket – but is it the cheapest? Keep your eye on prices, sales and discounts. This could be done using a comparison app.

2. Buy generic

Homebrand items are usually just as good as the name-brand versions, and they can be a lot cheaper. You can save a lot on items such as cereals, bread, baking items and snacks.

3. Buy in bulk

If there’s a special on non-perishable items (such as toilet paper, toothpaste or canned goods) and you have the space, consider stocking up – it can be a cost-effective way to save.

4. Consider frozen foods

We’re often told that fresh is best, but frozen fruit and veg last longer, are quicker to prepare, have locked-in nutrients – and are a great way to slash your grocery bill.

5. Head to farmers markets

These markets often have seasonal, fresh produce that can be cheaper than what you’d find at the supermarket – and it’ll often be better quality, too.

Using coupons and discounts to save on groceries

Smart shoppers know it’s all about keeping your eye out for discounts. Try these strategies:

1. Clip coupons

Using coupons at the supermarket can add up to hundreds of dollars in savings each year. Look for coupons in newspapers, on the back of your supermarket receipts or amongst community groups

2. Check for deals online

Some retailers, supermarkets or manufacturers may also offer coupons on their websites or social media that you can print out and use at the store, or online.

3. Use a coupon app

There are lots of smartphone apps which offer up-to-date digital coupons you can redeem in store or online. Here’s one you might like to check out. 

4. Sign up to email newsletters

Yes, it clogs up your inbox a bit – but it can be a great way to snap up discounts and coupons, as supermarkets often offer specials just for email subscribers.

5. Join loyalty programs

Some help you build ‘points’ you can use at the check-out, or they may extend special offers to loyalty members, enabling you to save even more. 

Making just a few of these tips a habit could help you significantly reduce your grocery bill – and assist you in putting more money towards other essentials.      

Protect your savings

If you’re looking for other ways to protect your family’s finances, you may be eligible for Seniors Life Insurance