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Savvy ways to slash your food bill

Savvy ways to slash your food bill

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Food shopping can take a huge chunk out of your income, particularly if you have a large family or a fussy eater. But along with that other salary sucker, shelter, it is one of life’s essentials. You don’t have to turn into Tom and Barbara from The Good Life to slash the cost of the weekly food shop. Here are our top tips.

Shop around

If you have more than one food shop nearby then make the most of them. You may not find everything you need in cut-price stores like Aldi or Lidl but by doing the majority of your shop there and supplementing from supermarkets or local butcher shops you can save money. There’s no need to be loyal to just one store.

Recognise supermarket agendas

Supermarkets aren’t just a place to buy food. They’re huge businesses with the main aim of maximising profit. This means they’ll do anything they can to encourage customers to spend more. Tactics include placing more expensive varieties at eye-level, running special offers, placing essentials such as bread at the back of the shop and having treats at the checkout.

Plan your meals

Planning your meals in advance means you’ll only buy what you need for that week. As above, supermarkets make it easy for customers to come away with things they don’t need but having a plan of your meals and what you need to buy means you won’t be so tempted to purchase something you’re not even going to eat that week. Make a list of everything you need before you go shopping and try to stick to it.

Shop online

You may have to pay for delivery but you will avoid impulse buys that you don’t really want or need and you’ll save money on petrol. Online shopping has the added benefit of being able to make lists so if you buy the same items week in week out you won’t have to spend time hunting them down.

Ditch branded products

Savvy ways to slash your food billMost supermarkets offer own-brand versions of popular products. These are usually made to at least the same quality as big brand names. If you usually buy branded foods then try an own-brand version to see if you like it – many are even made in the same factories using 99% of the same ingredients! If so then great you’ll save some money on future shops, if not then you can always switch back. If you normally buy supermarket brands then give their basics range a go. Again, you can always go back if you don’t like it.

Check best before dates

When you get home organise the food in the fridge by best before or use by dates. This means you’ll now which food will go off first and so should be eaten in your next meal. By doing this you’ll save money on food that you might otherwise throw out if not eaten on time. Don’t forget that you can freeze most foods to keep them longer and avoid waste.

Batch cook

Buying in bulk can work out cheaper than buying just enough to last the week. Batch cooking allows you to get the best deals without having to waste food. Make a large pot of stew, chilli, curry or soup and freeze what you don’t use that day. Not only will you save money, you’ll have some super-healthy ready meals that can be prepared quickly on busy days.


The biggest supermarkets all have their own magazines, which can usually be picked up for free with a purchase. Inside you’ll find coupons for money off certain products. If these are items you’d buy anyway then enjoy getting them a little cheaper. Other magazines, newspapers and websites also offer coupons so have a browse, cut them out and keep them in your purse or wallet so you don’t forget them.






About Maria Brett

About Maria Brett

Maria is a freelance writer with over 10 years' experience producing content for a variety of publications and websites. When not working or looking after her two gorgeous sons, she can usually be found playing flugelhorn in a brass band, helping out at her local hospital radio station, shouting at the television while watching Formula 1, at the cinema or plonked on the couch with a cold glass of wine.

Website: Maria Brett

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