Budget, Organize

How I Cut My Grocery Budget in Half:$150 to $75 for 2 Weeks of Groceries

$75 Grocery Budget for 2 Weeks of Groceries

grocery budget cut in half

 

Adjusting a Grocery Budget

The great thing about a grocery budget is that it can be adjusted pretty easily. I recently looked over our grocery budget and realized that I was spending a lot of money on extra items and items that weren’t the best deal.

MyΒ old grocery budget was $150 for 2 weeks or longer.Β I recently cut that budget in half. That means that I’m now striving to spend $150 for an entire month!

*This post contains affiliate links, and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

 

Why Review/Adjust a Budget?

One reason that it is important to review/adjust a budget is to make sure that you are not throwing money away. By reviewing my grocery budget I realized that I was spending more on chicken breasts just because they were frozen. Really?! Grocery stores constantly change their deals and specials. Make sure to review and adjust your grocery budget properly.

 

Meal Plan…Say It Again…Meal Plan

I used to spend so much money for food that would go to waste or that didn’t go together to create a meal. I like to plan my meals out for two weeks in advance. By having a plan, I am able to purchase only the food that I NEED. Grab a copy of my meal planner and grocery list to help in this area!

Grocery Printable

Plan for Cheaper Meals

Once I reviewed my budget, I decided to see what I was spending the most money on. Of course, it was meat products. My husband and I are big meat eaters so I had to get creative without cutting out meat completely from our meals.

I decided to start buying larger packs of meat that can be split into several meals. I also made the choice to cook my chicken in a slow-cooker, shred it, divide it, and use it for 2-3 separate meals (and maybe a lunch or two). My husband hunts so we have meat in the freezer for most of the year. I also use deer meat (venison) in place of a lot of beef. Here is an example of two weeks of meals on the new grocery budget.

meal plan for $75 budget

 

Ideas for Budget-Friendly Meals:

 

Breakfast:

Breakfast in my house is quick and filled with protein. Some of my favorite budget-friendly breakfast items include:

  • yogurt with granola

  • oatmeal with fruit

  • bananas and peanut butter

  • scrambled eggs/breakfast burrito

These items are filled with protein and fiber but don’t cost a lot of money. They also have a longer shelf life. On the weekends I like to splurge with some bacon. πŸ˜‰

 

Lunch:

Since we are teachers, lunch has to be easy to eat. It also needs to hold us over until dinner without weighing us down and making us sluggish. Here are some budget-friendly lunch ideas:

  • tuna salad

  • chicken salad

  • turkey sandwiches

  • baked chips

  • fruit

  • leftovers (casseroles, stir-fry, etc.)

Leftovers are great for lunch. We use these lunch crock-pots to heat our lunches to the perfect temperature. πŸ™‚

Target lunch crock pot

Dinner:

Dinner is my favorite meal to plan for because it’s the meal that I get to enjoy preparing. I love having time to prep and see my husband’s face light up when he tries a new recipe. πŸ™‚ Here are some awesome budget-friendly dinner ideas:

  • dried beans (pintos are our favorite) with some meat added (bacon, ham, etc.)

  • chili or homemade soup with crackers

  • chicken tacos using shredded chicken with rice and queso

  • chicken Caesar sandwiches using shredded chicken and pasta salad

  • stir-fry with chicken or beef and rice

  • spaghetti (or other pasta noodles) with meat sauce and frozen green beans

  • brats and kraut (one of my favorites!)

  • Any meat grilled-fish, pork, chicken, with in-season vegetables=cheap

  • beef roast (cut in half and used for two meals)

Follow me on Pinterest for more meal inspiration!

 

Pinterest for meal planning

Use Coupons

coupons for grocery budget

I’m not an expert at coupon-ing, but I use enough to save at least $20 each time I buy groceries. I mostly shop at Kroger so I use the custom coupons that are delivered to me through the mail. I also use two online coupon options.

Checkout 51 and CouponSurfer both offer printable coupons to use at numerous stores. Sign up and start saving money today!

Ibotta is another great resource to use to save money. I only use Ibotta to get money back on items that I had already planned on purchasing. If you start buying “extra” things just to save 50 cents then it kind of defeats the purpose. πŸ˜‰

 

Use RawSpiceBar

If you need a variety of spices, but you don’t want to purchase a spice rack full then you can susbcribe to RawSpiceBar. This company sends FRESH ground spices in small amounts to your house each month. I can’t tell you how many spices that I have thrown away half full. They don’t last forever!
RawSpiceBar: Buy the monthly spice box as low as $6

 

Don’t Neglect the Sale Ads

Grocery stores usually send out their weekly sale ads. They can also be found online. Pay attention to the sale ads because sometimes you can save money on unexpected items. Recently, Kroger had a gallon of milk for $3.50 or a half gallons two for $3…I bought two half gallons and saved 50 cents.

Kroger sale ad for budget

 

Take Your Time Planning and Shopping

Meal planning can be fun because I can do it while I watch television. I try to give myself an hour or so to plan the meals and make my grocery list. Making a rough draft helps because I always end up changing some items before I go shopping.

I do not enjoy grocery shopping, but I always make sure that I have 45 minutes to an hour to shop so that I can pay attention to the money that I am spending. Some people see me walking the aisles with my grocery list and roll their eyes as they zoom past me, but I like to take my time. Shopping efficiently is the key. My next tip helps me avoid any surprises at the register.

 

Use Kroger Clicklist to Determine Subtotal BEFORE You Shop

Kroger Clicklist for grocery budget
The price BEFORE my coupons. πŸ™‚

The Kroger Clicklist is an online resource to use when purchasing groceries online and picking them up at the store. I have tried it a few times and have mixed emotions about it. Nevertheless, it’s a GREAT resource to use to figure out how much money your groceries will cost before coupons and tax.

Kroger’s website is very user-friendly so it doesn’t take long to search for your items and determine your estimated cost. This is my favorite new trick. πŸ™‚

 

Tips and Tricks with Vegetables

Some people have told me that they would love to shop for two weeks at a time, but their vegetables would go bad. I used to think the same thing! Now I know (from trial and error) that some vegetables have a longer shelf life than others. Here are some of the vegetables that I buy fresh that will last for 2 weeks.

  • avocados (refrigerated once ripe)

  • bell peppers

  • broccoli

  • cabbage

  • carrots

  • garlic

  • onions

  • potatoes

  • tomatoes (refrigerated)

Lettuce is the WORST about spoiling before I can eat it all. I like to wash it, chop it up, and store inside a large glass jar. That usually makes it last a week. Normally, I just plan to eat all of our salads the first week. ha!

I also like supplementing fresh vegetables with frozen vegetables. Some of my favorite frozen vegetables are:

  • bell pepper and onion mix

  • broccoli (chopped)

  • brussel sprouts

  • green beans

  • peas

  • stir-fry mix

Keep Beverages Simple

A huge money saver is to drink water with meals or to make a gallon of iced tea. Water is free, and tea is cheap. I don’t buy sodas or fruit drinks to have at the house. This saves a lot of money. If you don’t like plain water then try diffusing it with your favorite fruit.

 

Never Shop When Hungry

Shopping while hungry is a big no-no. You will usually buy items that you typically wouldn’t because everything looks and sounds delicious. At least eat a small snack before heading into the grocery store.

 

Grocery TripΒ 

All of the prepping and planning is worth it when you check out at the cash register. Sometimes I feel like jumping up and down!

How do you budget for groceries? Do you tips to add or questions? Let me know in the comments! Don’t forget to check out my post about a $150 grocery budget for more information!

59 thoughts on “How I Cut My Grocery Budget in Half:$150 to $75 for 2 Weeks of Groceries

  1. I’m currently having to really focus on cutting back spending to save for graduate school and food is a big part of my monthly budget. I just really love to eat good, healthy food and often never cared about the price, I thought if it was for my health it was worth it. Now, I’m realizing that it is possible to eat healthy on a budget, even though I’m not sure I can get down to $75 a week. I can’t do dairy so a lot of your meal options were out for me. The one question I did have is how do you prepare the frozen veg to make it taste decent? I’m a hardcore fresh veg person, but I do think I need to supplement with frozen to make my budget.

    1. Hi Monica! I definitely know what you mean about cutting spending to save for something else.

      Healthy food is typically more expensive, but it can be done. I love the steamable bags of frozen vegetables. The brussel sprouts are some of my favorites! If you don’t like those then the broccoli ones are great too! Some even come with garlic added, but if not I like to add a little olive oil or butter with salt, pepper, and garlic. Yum!

      No dairy does make it trickier but being aware of your spending limit will make you more conscious at the store automatically. Thanks so much for your feedback. If you have any other questions don’t hesitate to ask. πŸ™‚

  2. Grocery stores often place the greens upon entrance (they do in the UK) to make you feel less guilty when reach the bakery section and grab a load of cakes/sweets/not great for you items. Combat this by finishing with fruit and veg.

    Some great tips here. A shopping list helps me massively.

    1. haha that is so true Dave! That is exactly how my local grocery store is. The bakery always smells so delicious too. πŸ˜‰

  3. Amazing article. I always try to cut down my grocery budget and these are such nice tips. They would surely help.

  4. OMG, these are such great tips. Simple things we sometimes miss. I like the idea of breakfast filled with protein coz it makes you less hungry – I live by this one.
    Thanks for sharing this.

  5. All great tips. I think meal planning has the most impact for me just bc if I know what I’m cooking/serving, then I don’t feel the need to go to the store for an absolute random reason.

  6. Excellent tips! I miss living near a Kroger! I really need to work on meal planning and actually eating leftovers. Most of the time our leftovers sit there for too long and then get fed to the chickens. But hey, at least someone is eating it right? lol

  7. Excellent tips. I found meal planning alone saved me a lot because I wasn’t guessing what I’d make in the grocery aisle. Have you noticed that the BBQ chicken in the store are much cheaper than buying raw chicken? I buy a lot of those. Cheap and timesavers.

  8. These are great tips! I love budgeting and saving on my groceries – it’s so painful to spend so much money on food that you eat and never see again!

  9. Whoa cutting your grocery bill by 50% is a huge deal. We meal plan too but I guess we have to get better at it! Great tips.

    1. It was crazy, but I’m so glad that I did it! I love having the extra cash for other things. πŸ™‚ Thanks Joline. πŸ™‚

  10. That is some great work! Well done! When we were saving for a house we had to do the same thing and it felt like all we were doing was rehydrating dried beans from the asian supermarket. I wish we had apps like that in the UK. Think I’m going to have to start doing this again!

  11. Great tips! I’m a bargain shopper so I use coupons and a few of those rebate apps. I need to get back to planning meals. When I did, it saved time and money.

  12. Lettuce in a jar, now that is something I have not heard of. Been shopping for a family with three kids for too long to mention…ok 28 years. Certainly wish I had your tips then! Meal planning is definitely the key for our spending, when we plan we buy less, when we show up at the store and shop-not so good :(.

    1. I’ve heard of Aldo before. Is that a discount type grocery store? We will be visiting Hawaii this summer, and I’ve read that groceries there are crazy expensive! Thanks for the feedback Stephanie!

  13. Great post! I definitely find that meal planning is one of the biggest ways we keep our grocery spending down.

    1. It’s so hard to just cook for myself when my husband is away for some reason! I def get eating out. πŸ™‚

    1. Haha! It definitely takes some practice. I used to just go to the store and buy what sounded good then get home and not know what to cook. Thanks for your feedback!

  14. These are such great tips! I’m a college student and I’m going to have an unpaid internship next semester rather than my usual part time job. I’m going to have a lot less money so I’m looking to budget as much as possible. This post was super helpful! http://carleehebert.com/

  15. Loving this post! I am totally guilty of shopping while starving and every time I do it I think OH NO! Bye bye money! haha! The constant battle of lettuce gets me too! I’ll for sure be trying the mason jar trick. Thanks for sharing πŸ™‚

  16. These are awesome grocery budget tips! I am always telling my clients to meal plan and meal prep to make life easier. We also buy our meet in bulk from Costco as they have really good prices on their meat and produce. I adore Ibotta!

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