You’ve probably noticed that the price of food and ingredients has been going up recently which is the last thing we need after the last couple of years and the considerable economic consequences it had for many of us.
But let’s stay positive and look for solutions!
Today we’ll try to help a little bit by sharing some ideas on how you could reduce your shopping bills without sacrificing the quality of your meals.
Here are our top 8 tips:
Don’t stock up too much
During the pandemic we got used to stocking up with more food than necessary to be ready for possible lockdowns and supply shortages.
However, there’s a cost that comes with buying more ingredients and supplies than you actually need for instance the food could go off or otherwise become useless and your money could be wasted.
An easy way to reduce your shopping bills then is to avoid stocking up more than necessary so plan your menus in advance and buy only the food you need to prepare these meals.
Buy in bulk
Buying in bulk can also help you only buy the quantities you need for preparing your weekly menus without accumulating half-finished bags of ingredients.
Thanks to bulk buying you’ll also avoid paying for useless packaging (and creating unnecessary waste).
Prepare it yourself!
Some store-bought foods can be quite pricey, so why don’t you try making your own at home?
Think for example about granola, pasta, bread or jam.
Give it a try!
You’ll see that nothing can beat the taste of delicious, home-made goodies you prepared yourself!
Many people think that eating vegan is more expensive but in reality the opposite is true.
Eating unprocessed, plant protein is generally much cheaper than animal protein.
Replace meat with lentils or chickpeas for example, and you’ll see the difference. Legumes are generally less pricey but at least as nutritious as meat (if not more…).
Keep in mind though that it’s cheaper to buy dried legumes and cook them yourself, rather than getting the canned version which is generally a bit more expensive.
If you want to learn more about this, check out our post on the real cost of plant-based diets: https://www.allaboutgreens.co.uk/blog/the-true-cost-of-a-plant-based-diet
Nowadays there are several apps where shops can advertise their end-of-day bargains for fresh products which otherwise would be thrown away.
What a great way to reduce food waste while also enjoying heavily discounted fresh bread or produce.
Check online if there are any shops participating in the initiative in your town.
And even if you don’t find any options near you, a good alternative is to go to the vegetable market just before the closing time. Bargains guaranteed!
Don’t eat too much
Many people don’t realise that each time they eat junk food, unnecessary snacks or excessive portions, they’re paying extra money for food they don’t need.
And over time, this can represent a significant cost not only for their wallet, but also for their health.
Eating more mindfully and avoiding wasting money on foods you don’t need is therefore a great way to cut your food budget.
Drink tap water
And the same is true for sodas and fizzy drinks.
Not only are they unnecessary, they’re also harmful for you due to their high sugar content (let alone all the artificial ingredients…).
Sticking to water will therefore help you reduce your shopping bill as well as avoid extra-kilos and potential health problems.
If that’s an option in your area, opt for tap water instead of bottled water. That will save you money, as well as lots of plastic waste.
Don’t go to the supermarket when you’re hungry
And last but not least: make sure you don’t go to the supermarket when you’re hungry as all your efforts to plan your meals and stick to the shopping quantities will fail!
Let’s face it, nobody can resist buying too much food and processed snacks when they’re hungry!
Rather than going to the supermarket after work (and before dinner), try for example during the weekend to avoid cravings and overbuying.
These are some of our top tips to save on shopping bills however please let us know your top tips too, we would love to hear off you!
Author: Vittoria Pasca
Vittoria Pasca is an Italian nutritionist and healthy food blogger specialised in vegetarian and sports dietetics. She lives in Suva, Fiji, where she created Healthy Eating, a business promoting healthy nutrition and lifestyles.
She likes cooking with tropical plants and creating nutritious recipes that she shares on her blog and Facebook page, Healthy Eating Fiji. She combines different ingredients to make sure meals are balanced and nutrients are well absorbed. She has contributed to a number of nutrition-focused cookbooks and in 2020 released her first cookbook: Pacific Vegan, Healthy and Creative Cooking with Pacific Plants.
She is the co-founder and lead organiser of VegFest Fiji, a festival promoting plant-based diets and the consumption of local fruits and vegetables.
She is also a certified Lifestyle Medicine professional.