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Mastering the Mom Grocery Game: 10 Fabulously Frugal Guide to Saving Big on Your Grocery Budget!

Sep 30, 2023

We all know the grocery store can sometimes feel like a battlefield, especially when you’re trying to stick to a grocery budget.

But don’t worry! With a dash of planning, a sprinkle of creativity, and a whole lot of fabulous energy, you can conquer the grocery game without breaking the bank!

Today, I’m sharing with you a delightful feast of tips, tricks, and strategies tailored just for you, to save big on your grocery budget without compromising on quality or taste.

Mastering the Mom Grocery Game: 10 Fabulously Frugal Guide to Saving Big on Your Grocery Budget!

1. Plan Your Attack: The Grocery List Magic!

Creating a grocery list isn’t just a chore; it’s your secret weapon to saving money!

Plan your meals for the week, considering what you already have in your pantry and what’s on sale at your favorite store. Trust me, a well-thought-out grocery list can slash your spending significantly.

ProteinsFruits & VeggiesDairyGrainsMiscellaneous
ChickenApplesMilkRiceToilet Paper
TofuSpinachCheesePastaCleaning Supplies
Ground BeefCarrotsYogurtQuinoa
EggsBananasButterBread

2. Embrace the Sales and Coupons Magic!

Sales and coupons are your golden tickets to substantial savings. Keep an eye on store flyers and download money-saving apps.

Many stores offer digital coupons that you can load directly onto your loyalty card. It’s like getting free money! Clip those coupons, and watch the prices drop at the checkout.

Example Coupon Savings:

  • $1 off on any two boxes of cereal
  • Buy one, get one free on frozen vegetables
  • 20% off on organic baby food

Here are some fantastic sources or companies that you can contact to request coupons, adding a touch of magic to their budget-friendly shopping journey:

Procter & Gamble (P&G)

P&G is a giant in the consumer goods industry. You can directly contact them through their website or customer service line to request coupons for various household products.

The Kroger Company

Kroger is a well-known grocery chain that often provides coupons for its customers. Reach out to your local Kroger store or check their official website for available coupon options.

Coupons.com

Coupons.com is a leading digital coupon platform that offers a wide range of printable coupons for grocery items, household products, and more. Visit their website to print coupons or find out about their coupon mailing services.

SmartSource

SmartSource is another prominent online coupon provider. You can visit their website to browse through available coupons and also request coupon inserts to be sent to your home.

RetailMeNot

RetailMeNot is a popular coupon website and app that offers various discounts and deals, including grocery coupons. Users can explore their website or app to find grocery coupons and save on their shopping.

Manufacturer Hotlines

Look for the toll-free number on the packaging of your favorite products. Manufacturers often have hotlines where consumers can call to inquire about promotions or request coupons for their products.

Grocery Store Loyalty Programs

If you are part of a grocery store’s loyalty program, call their customer service number.

Many stores offer exclusive coupons and deals to their loyal customers. By calling, you can inquire about special offers tailored to your shopping habits.

3. Buy in Bulk and Freeze the Savings!

Buying in bulk can be a game-changer for your budget.

Purchase non-perishable items, like pasta, canned goods, and toiletries, in bulk.

And when it comes to perishable items, don’t hesitate to buy more than you need when they’re on sale.

Freeze what you won’t use immediately, and you’ll always have essentials at your fingertips without paying full price.

Buy in Bulk and Freeze for Fabulous Savings

FruitsVegetablesMeatsDairy
BerriesBroccoliChicken breastsButter
ApplesCauliflowerGround beefCheese
OrangesCarrotsPork chopsMilk
BananasPeasSalmon filletsYogurt
GrapesSpinachShrimpEggs
PlumsCornBeef steaksCream
MangoesGreen beansTurkeyIce cream
PineapplePeppersLambHeavy cream

Here are some ideas on how to freeze your items

ItemBuying in BulkFreezing Method
Chicken BreastsBuy family packs on saleIndividually wrap and store in freezer bags
Ground BeefPurchase large quantitiesDivide into portions and freeze in airtight containers
Fresh VegetablesBuy during harvest seasonBlanch, cool, and freeze in portions
FruitsBuy in bulk when in seasonWash, slice, and freeze on trays before transferring to bags
CheesePurchase blocks or large packsGrate or slice and freeze in portions
BreadBuy extra loaves during salesFreeze entire loaves or slices for easy use
FishBuy fresh or frozen in bulkWrap fillets individually and store in freezer bags
PastaPurchase in large quantitiesStore in airtight containers or vacuum-sealed bags
Beans and LentilsBuy dried beans and lentils in bulkSoak, cook, and freeze in portions
Broths and SoupsBuy in large containers or make in batchesFreeze in meal-sized portions
HerbsGrow your own or buy in bulkChop and freeze in ice cube trays with water or oil
EggsBuy in bulk from local farmsBeat, pour into ice cube trays, and freeze
ButterBuy during sales and in bulkDivide into portions and freeze
NutsPurchase in large bagsStore in airtight containers in the freezer
FlourBuy in bulkStore in airtight containers in the freezer to extend shelf life
Cooked Grains (Rice, Quinoa)Cook in large batchesPortion and freeze in freezer-safe bags
YogurtBuy in large containersFreeze in ice cube trays for smoothies or as frozen treats
Pie DoughMake in batchesWrap tightly and freeze for future use
Tomato SauceMake in bulk during tomato seasonFreeze in portions for pasta, pizzas, and casseroles
Homemade SoupsCook large pots of soupFreeze in individual servings for quick meals

4. Fabulous Freezer Meals: Cook and Freeze to Save on Your Grocery Budget!

Freezer meals are a busy mom’s best friend. Prepare large batches of soups, stews, casseroles, and sauces.

Freeze them in meal-sized portions for those days when you just don’t have the energy to cook.

It’s a fantastic way to save money and time simultaneously!

Cooking at home not only saves you money but also allows you to control the quality of ingredients.

Plan a cooking day where you prepare multiple meals at once.

Freeze them in portions, and voilà – you have your own “fast food” without the hefty price tag. Plus, it saves you from the temptation of ordering takeout on busy days.

Mastering the Mom Grocery Game: A Fabulously Frugal Guide to Saving Big on Your Grocery Budget!

Here are 10 fabulous examples of easy and fast cook-and-freeze meals, specially tailored for a busy mom like you.

These recipes are not only delicious but also quick to prepare and freeze, ensuring you have hassle-free meals on those hectic days:

Spaghetti Bolognese:

A classic favorite! Prepare a big batch of flavorful Bolognese sauce. Cook your spaghetti, let it cool, and then freeze in meal-sized portions.

Vegetable Stir-Fry:

Load up on fresh veggies and stir-fry them with your favorite protein (tofu, chicken, or shrimp).

Portion them out and freeze for a quick and healthy meal.

Chili Con Carne:

Make a hearty chili with beans, ground beef, tomatoes, and spices.

It gets even better after freezing, allowing the flavors to blend. Freeze in individual containers for easy reheating.

Chicken Curry:

Simmer chicken pieces in a rich curry sauce made with coconut milk, tomatoes, and spices. Freeze in portions and serve with rice or naan bread.

Vegetable Soup:

Throw your favorite veggies into a pot, add some broth, and let it simmer away. Once it cools down, freeze in containers. Warm it up whenever you need a comforting bowl of soup.

Lasagna:

Layer pasta sheets with rich Bolognese sauce, béchamel, and cheese.

Bake, let it cool, and then freeze in portions. It reheats beautifully in the oven.

Quesadillas:

Fill tortillas with cheese, cooked chicken, veggies, and beans.

Freeze them individually, and whenever you crave a quick Mexican delight, just pop them in the oven.

Veggie Curry:

Make a colorful curry with assorted vegetables, chickpeas, and a vibrant curry sauce.

Freeze it in meal-sized containers and enjoy with rice or naan.

Beef Stew:

Slow-cook beef chunks with carrots, potatoes, and onions in a savory broth until tender.

Freeze in portions for a comforting and hearty meal.

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo:

Cook chicken and broccoli, toss them in creamy Alfredo sauce, and mix with pasta.

Freeze in individual servings for a decadent and quick dinner option.

These recipes not only save time but also ensure that you and your family enjoy wholesome, homemade meals without the stress.

5. Don’t Fear Store Brands: They’re Fabulous Too!

Store brands often get a bad rap, but they can be just as good as, if not better than, their name-brand counterparts.

They’re more budget-friendly for your grocery budget without compromising on quality.

Give them a try, and you might find some new favorites while saving a bundle.

Example Store Brands

  • Store-brand cereal
  • Store-brand canned vegetables
  • Store-brand pasta sauce

6. Time Your Shopping: Fabulous Discounts Await!

Did you know that certain times of the day can offer additional discounts?

Many grocery stores mark down perishable items like meat, bakery goods, and deli items in the evenings.

Be the savvy shopper who hits the store at the right time and snags those fabulous discounts before they disappear! Your grocery budget will thank you! 🙂

Example Discounted Items For Your Grocery Budget

  • Freshly baked bread at 50% off after 7 PM
  • Meat discounts at 30% off after 8 PM

7. Grow Your Own Magic: Start a Fabulous Garden!

If you have some space at home, consider starting a small vegetable or herb garden.

Growing your own produce not only ensures freshness but also slashes your grocery budget.

Even if you only have a windowsill, you can grow herbs like basil, parsley, or mint. Plus, it’s a fabulous and educational activity for the kids!

Here are 13 easy-to-grow herbs and vegetables that are perfect for any space, whether you have a garden, a balcony, or just a sunny windowsill.

Let’s get those green thumbs working!

Herb / VegetableGrowing InstructionsSeeds
Basil – Location: Bright, indirect sunlight.
– Soil: Well-draining, rich soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist.
– Harvesting: Pinch off the top leaves regularly to encourage bushier growth.
– Additional Tips: Great for windowsills or small pots. Watch out for pests; basil is a magnet for them!
Mint – Location: Partial shade to full sun.
– Soil: Moist, well-draining soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil evenly moist, not waterlogged.
– Harvesting: Snip leaves as needed; mint can be invasive, so consider planting it in a container.
– Additional Tips: Mint is a vigorous grower; keep it contained to prevent it from taking over your space!
Green Onions (Scallions) – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Loose, well-draining soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist.
– Harvesting: Cut the green tops, leaving the roots to regrow.
– Additional Tips: You can regrow green onions from scraps; just place the roots in water, and they’ll grow back!
Chives – Location: Partial shade to full sun.
– Soil: Well-draining soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist.
– Harvesting: Snip chives with scissors, leaving about 2 inches from the base for regrowth.
– Additional Tips: Chives have a mild onion flavor and are great for garnishes and salads.
Thyme – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Well-draining soil.
– Watering: Allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings.
– Harvesting: Snip leaves as needed; thyme is a low-growing herb and works well as ground cover too.
– Additional Tips: Thyme is a hardy herb and can withstand less frequent watering.
Rosemary – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Well-draining soil.
– Watering: Allow the soil to dry out between waterings; rosemary prefers slightly drier conditions.
– Harvesting: Snip sprigs as needed; rosemary can be pruned to maintain its shape.
– Additional Tips: Rosemary is a fragrant herb that pairs wonderfully with roasted dishes.
Oregano – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Well-draining soil.
– Watering: Allow the soil to dry out between waterings; oregano is drought-tolerant.
– Harvesting: Snip leaves as needed; oregano can be aggressive, so consider planting it in a container.
– Additional Tips: Oregano is a staple in Mediterranean cuisine and adds a robust flavor to dishes.
Spinach – Location: Partial shade to full sun.
– Soil: Well-draining, nutrient-rich soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist.
– Harvesting: Pick outer leaves when they’re large enough to eat; spinach regrows after cutting.
– Additional Tips: Spinach is rich in nutrients and can be continuously harvested.
Lettuce – Location: Partial shade to full sun; lettuce appreciates some shade in hot climates.
– Soil: Well-draining, moist soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist.
– Harvesting: Pick outer leaves or cut the entire head when mature.
– Additional Tips: Lettuce comes in various types, from crisphead to loose-leaf; choose the variety that suits your space.
Carrots – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Loose, well-draining soil; remove rocks and clumps to allow carrots to grow straight.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist, especially during germination.
– Harvesting: Harvest when carrots reach the desired size, usually 50-80 days after planting.
– Additional Tips: Carrots come in various colors and sizes; try different varieties for a colorful harvest.
Radishes – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Loose, well-draining soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist; radishes prefer cool, moist conditions.
– Harvesting: Harvest when radishes are the size of a large marble; they mature quickly.
– Additional Tips: Radishes are great for small spaces and can be grown in containers.
Green Beans – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Well-draining soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist.
– Harvesting: Pick beans when they’re young and tender; regular harvesting promotes more growth.
– Additional Tips: Green beans are climbers; provide a trellis or support for vertical growth.
Peppers – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Well-draining soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist.
– Harvesting: Peppers can be harvested at any stage, but mature peppers are usually sweeter.
– Additional Tips: Peppers come in various colors and heat levels; choose based on your preference.
Cucumbers – Location: Full sun.
– Soil: Rich, well-draining soil.
– Watering: Keep the soil consistently moist; cucumbers need regular watering.
– Harvesting: Harvest when cucumbers are firm and bright in color; overripe cucumbers can be bitter.
– Additional Tips: Cucumbers spread; give them space or consider compact or bush varieties.

8. Master the Markdown Magic: Hunt for Discounts!

Markdowns are your secret weapon in the grocery saving game.

Look for the yellow or red stickers indicating reduced prices on items nearing their expiration dates.

These items are still perfectly good but are often heavily discounted.

Stock up on these fabulous finds and watch your grocery budget shrink!

Example Markdown Deals:

  • 50% off on bakery items nearing expiration (remember you can freeze your bread too and when you warm them up they will taste as fresh as when you first bought them)
  • 30% off on dairy products approaching the sell-by date

9. Community Magic: Fabulous Swaps and Shares!

Engage with your community and fellow moms to set up a food swap or share group.

It could be a neighborhood event or an online group where you exchange surplus produce, homemade goodies, or bulk purchases.

This not only saves you money but also builds a sense of community and support among moms.

Example Community Swaps:

  • Exchange surplus vegetables from your garden for homemade jams from a neighbor
  • Share bulk purchases of pantry staples with other moms in your community

Final Thoughts

Remember, saving money on your grocery budget is not about sacrificing quality or flavor. It’s about being savvy, creative, and a little adventurous in your approach.

By implementing these fabulous strategies, you’ll not only save big but also savor the satisfaction of providing healthy and delicious meals for your family without breaking the bank.

Stay fabulous, stay frugal, and happy grocery shopping, super moms!

The Budget Academy
Fab Kellum author of the Girl, Get Out of Debt! blog

Hey you! Welcome to The Budget Academy. I am Fab, a survivor, a mom, and an entrepreneur at heart. Just like many, I have overcome financial struggles and I want to share with you how I did it.  I have a background in Finance and Real Estate and I’m passionate about helping others succeed and achieve financial freedom.  So, don’t be shy, let’s connect and start this journey together! Learn more about me here.