READ HOW ONE OF HAPPY DEAL – HAPPY DAY READERS, KIM, FEEDS A HOUSEHOLD OF 7 FOR $75 A WEEK!!!!!!
If You are looking to drastically reduce your monthly grocery budget, then this post is for you! If you put into practice these 5 tips, you will absolutely decrease your grocery spending.
Since I have an average family of 4, I wanted to hear real life tips from a larger family of 7 on how they save on their grocery budget. I got some great tips from Kim – who feeds her 4 kids, husband, and dad for $75 a week!
Kim told me that she is continuously asked how she feeds everyone for just $75/week. She organized how she does it and shares her secrets with us today.
Here are her top 5 ways you can save money at the grocery store and live on a budget like $75 per week for a family of 7!!
1.) Meal Planning is Key
If you plan out your weekly meals (all of them, including snacks) you are more likely to stick to a list and have everything you need on hand for your meals.
If you aren’t sure where to begin, then start by printing out this Meal Planning Guide. This is a great way to get on paper everything you’d like to eat for the week and will help you organize your shopping list.
Want the meal planning done for you? Then be sure to check out this amazing meal planning tool – MyFreezEasy!
2.) Shop at More Than One Store and Don’t Be Brand Loyal
This is made very easy by the internet these days. Without even leaving your home, you can look at all of the ads for the stores in your area and decide which stores to shop at.
Pick only one or two stores (driving around can add up in the gas tank). Shop for the best quality and price. Don’t always stick to one brand either – you may not be getting the item for the best price (even if you do have a coupon!)
Favado is a great smart phone app that is an easy tool to look up the best coupon match-up deals in your area.
3.) Cook from scratch
This is easily done and saves a lot of time and money at the grocery store. You can make even the simplest meals from scratch, including baked items like cakes, brownies, and cookies.
Do some research and find a local co-op in your area where you can buy baking ingredients in bulk and split it up with other families.
Now that we are talking baking, you should check out this Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe! This will seriously be your new favorite Chocolate Chip cookie recipe! 🙂
4.) Buy Meat in Bulk or On Sale & Freeze Extra
If you purchase all of the meat that you need for the week, it is likely that more than half of your budget would be spent on meat alone! Instead, spread out the meat purchases for the month by purchasing one type of meat each week.
Purchase family packs of chicken, ground beef, and pork. This is determined by price so if you think that pork is too expensive, then buy chicken that week instead.
If there is a particularly good sale for example on beef, like steaks or roasts, then purchase those a few at a time. It will all balance out and your freezer is usually full of meat for the entire month.
5.) Use a Variety of Recipes
Large families can easily eat through four boxes of cereal a week (and drink more than four gallons of milk!) You can stop the “cereal bleed” by coming up with healthy alternatives.
Serve a variety of choices like oatmeal cake bars, baked oatmeal cups, yogurt and granola, pancakes, waffles, eggs, etc. Some of these alternatives you can make ahead and freeze, and then just reheat on a busy school morning.
Bonus Tip: Don’t get into credit card debt with buying your groceries!
Grocery shopping can be hard enough, especially when you’re meal planning for an entire family.
The Walmart MoneyCard® Reloadable Prepaid Visa® Card helps take the stress out of managing the monthly grocery budget.
Cards, like this one, that are part of the Visa Clear Prepaid program are required to clearly communicate their monthly fee plan. So, you’ll know when you pay a fee and when you won’t.
Go to visa.com/visaclearprepaid to find the prepaid card that works for you.This is great if you are not wanting to carry around cash, or not wanting to be tempted by using a credit card and spending more that you have.”
I know that these tips don’t give you a 100% breakdown on how to achieve this goal. So the best tool I can offer to you to help make this a reality is to take a look at this page of meal plans! Most of them show you how to make 20 meals for the cost of $150 (for a family of 4).
Find more frugal tips over here!
(Thanks mymamascheap for your tips!)
I am determined to learn how to do this:-) praise God for women like you who have the gift for organizing and a keen eye for a good deal. I am a single mother of five and I am blessed beyond words with my children, I just want to be a good mom:-)
Thanks for this. I love #4.I could spent a ton of money on different kinds of meat at one time or only get what’s on sale and end up with one thing (chicken) in the freezer. I like the idea of spreading it out, that way if I think of something I haven’t fixed in a while, in theory, I should have that particular kind of meat somewhere in the freezer.
Yes, spreading out meat purchases really is helpful to get it at the cheapest price, and to have it on hand. Thanks Melissa!
Unfortunately it’s not just about having the gift for organization. I have that gift. Just don’t have much extra time…esp for shopping a variety of stores.
G’day all 🙂 I am from Australia, some years ago I went from being a Single Mum of 1 to a homemaker for 8! Along the way I have learnt a few things I would love to share with you. Firstly, “what she said” ^^^ Great tips Kim !
I love my freezer, best money and time saving investment ever!
* cook double or triple what you need and freeze leftovers to suit your household needs. This may mean individual portions, serve 2 or 4 etc. Having some individual cook and eat meals in your freezer is always handy. Spaghetti, pasta bakes, shepards pie, left over roast slices/mash potato/in season cooked vegetables…have all worked well for me.
Learn the rhythm of your local stores and markets. Not just supermarkets. Eg: Family owned fruit and veg places are often happy to make deals with regulars. For example new stock comes in on x day, so would they put together a bulk mixed box of the old stock for you on a regular basis at a clearance price. Old stock left to rot does not bring them money. It often costs money to dispose of. This can be great for juicing, soups, slow cooker recipes etc. Eg: many bakerys place items on sale at set times (3pm daily for mine). Eg: all supermarkets have a system of discounting based on new stock arrival and the basic principle if it ain’t selling, price it down.
Most big brand names have systematic sales lined up with the big chainstores. Love a particular brand of toilet paper, watch it’s price pattern, learn your needs and bulk up when it is cheap.
Cheese, if it is in individual or small portions it will cost 200% – 500% more per kilo. Don’t take my word for it do the math. You can pre-grate for convenience, pre-slice…particularly if you have children making after school leftovers and cheese toasties. Buy in bulk. Segment to suit needs to avoid over use. For young children cutting into shapes is also fun 🙂
4pm hunger attack. If you have children, chances are they arrive home from school “starving”, be prepared. This is your best chance of bulking up their daily vegetables intake. Eg: homemade soups, chocolate cake with hidden finely grated carrot, corn bread, sliced cucumber, carrots, baby corn etc and dip. You get the idea. (Remember per weight, and given the obvious health ramifications, vegetables are much cheaper them pre-packaged, salt, sugar and colour number….)
I find thinking on a monthly cycle helps. Growing your own herbs and salad (and if you are dedicated grow as much else as suits you) really helpful.
Good gosh this got long, sorry got carried away, and I was just getting started 😉
Hope this helps 🙂
I would love more information
i do all these and still spend double to triple this for my family of 5. Cost of living is a little higher here in North Dakota, but I don’t imagine it’s THAT much higher. Are you figuring breakfast, lunch, and dinner for 7 days no takeout. Aside from from buying processed meals like hamburger helper I don’t see my grocery bill going down. We don’t eat out except for maybe 2 nights a month. We spend about $600 per month(breakfast lunch, and dinner for 28 days) and that seems reasonable(about $4/per person per day). I haven’t found the different stores up here to have much differing prices and when you drive 1 hr 15 min to get to the store the last thing you wanna do is drive to multiple stores lol. I wish there were more information in your article. I don’t see how this is even feasible if you make your meals from scratch and avoid processed food as much as possible. I only comment because I think $75 for a family of 7 per week doing just these things is not realistic. I do all these things planning meals based on what’s in season/on sale and I at minimum spend double.
Torrie – you spend $600 a month in just food? Or does that include other consumables like kleenex, paper towels, etc? This just factors in grocery prices. I spend $500 a month and that includes food AND consumables AND cat food AND diapers, etc….
I have a hard time with these types of articles. Where are you shopping?! I penny pinch (well we don’t use pennies anymore in Canada) and meal plan like crazy and shop every sale, use Superstores PTS card, buy in bulk at Costco and cook from scratch as much as possible and I can’t keep our grocery budget under $600 for THREE of us!!! Maybe post a meal plan for a typical week? Thanks
Michelle – have you tried any of these meal plans? http://happydealhappyday.com/meal-plans/
And are you just calculating food costs? This article is just about food costs – not about other items you may still need to pick up at the grocery store like TP, diapers, etc.
I’m definitely looking at the planning link, I too easily spend 600 a month on just food, no other stuff, and we only eat out about once a month. It’ll be interesting to see what type of meals are there.
OK, so I would love to see a breakdown of what you buy, I guess… the meal plans can be helpful but I’m the type of person who needs to see it, I’m weird I know. Also, are you feeding teenage athletes? Football players, lacrosse players, cross country runners… soccer, ballet, softball… Our house of 7 consists of a soldier, a wildland firefighter, 2HS athletes and 2MS athletes…
No I don’t have as big eaters as you do with all of those teenage athletes! But my best suggestion is to take a look at the meal plans for Aldi’s, Wegmans, or Costco. Those all do have the exact breakdown of items and recipes to go with it, along with prices. Most of those meal plans are for a family of 4 – w/o including teenage athletes! I will say that your family are big eaters! And the girl who gave me these tips, with a family of 7, at the time of writing this has small children. So I can see how it is more challenging for you for sure!
I love that finding like minded people who want to save money on groceries and take every tip I can get, but hate how mis-leading these types of posts are, or at least the titles.
Every single time I see articles/blogs like this they are either so old the pricing is outdated or the OP says they are feeding a family of 6, but their family of 6 consists of 2 adults, a toddler, an exclusively breast fed infant, a dog and a goldfish. Or they have an enormous garden and/or hunt and don’t pay for produce or meat or their meal plan makes use of a stockpile that isn’t included in the grocery total. I need to see realistic plans for families with 2 working parents who don’t have time to tend a garden or make their own bread and laundry detergent and have teens and kids with high metabolisms. I clicked the link for the meal plans and most of them say 20 meals for $150 and feed a family of 4. If you count 3 meals a day for 7 days that’s 21 meals/week and as stated in the links that is at $150/week. So the math just isn’t working here.
Having said all that, the basic message of the post stands true. Shop sales, take advantage of rock bottom prices, meal plan and be flexible are all the foundational keys to saving money. Its just frustrating to continually be reading these types of articles only to be mislead by the title.
I’m sorry you felt mis-lead by the title. But these are “tips” from a mom who really made this happen! Yes her lifestyle is one in which wont’ work for everyone. And unfortunately (or fortunately depending how you look at it) gardening and hunting are real food sources that can be significantly cheaper than buying in the store. Meal plans are more often written just for dinner – ways to make hot meals in less time and less money. Time really is money – so many of these tips won’t work for 2 working adults since most of their time is at their job.
But yes, the basic message is true, shop sales and freeze food from those sales, meal plan, garden, hunt, DIY – all money saving tips. There is no one formula that works for everyone!