Saturday, September 5, 2015

This and that

Groceries on the cheap doesn't have to be depriving yourself of good food.   It does mean that you change your priorities to not eating out a lot and not eating the most expensive cuts of meat.    We do still eat meat, those of us that choose to.    It takes a bit more time than that person that goes to one store and puts what they want or need on the basket and checks out.    There's nothing wrong with that if you have the money and it isn't your priority to save.   If you don't have the money, you are on a position temporarily that you have to use SNAP, or you just want to stretch what you do have, a little time can give you great payoffs.   If that payoff is nit running out of S NAP allotment before you run out of month and having food in the cupboard, that's a good thing,  it may mean that you can free up money to pay for your meds, or make both ends meet.   

Pairing all available ways if cutting your food costs is an easy way to save.    Planning your trip and finding ways to cook the meals quickly to make up the time works for me.  Basically, I get paid in savings to shop, I don't get paid to cook.   As long as the food is good, and people like it, it works for me.  

Yesterday's trip.    I am writing this to show an example, not to boast of my shopping skills.  I am just an ordinary person without any special talent.    I have done this for years, even when I was holding down two jobs and had three kids at home.    

I digress 

SAFEWAYS and dollar store.   

Dollar store first because it would have no perishables.    Our dollar tree and SAFEWAYS are close together.   Many others in the area either have a SAFEWAYS or a grocery Outlet near them.   It makes for a easy way to plan trios to save gas.   

Basic bounty paper towels 1.00 less a .50 coupon made the roll .50 
Dawn detergent, small bottle ( I got it for stain removal) was 100 with a coupon made it .50. 
Betty Crocker a gratin potatoes were a buck with a .50 coupon for two made the. .75.  
I got a book marked 27.95 and well worth it for a dollar.  
Four pure Apple juices were a dollar.  ( a splurge because anything in individual boxes is high, but worth it so granddaughter can help herself.  ) 

SAFEWAYS had a meat sale.   A lot of it was processed, but it has far out pull dates and I allow it for a garnish type addition to a meal and once a week.    It saves a lot of time and money,   Sometimes by seven o'clock when I can cook dinner, my body doesn't want to cooperate.    

Sirloin tips in gravy was five dollars : less than buying the meat and cooking it 
BBQ beef was five dollars.  - ditto 
Ham cubes were five dollars -   I can get four meals from a package.  
Pork tenderloin was five dollars and I had dollar off coupons.   So,e from last month and some from this, all cutrrent dated.   We can get two meals on a tenderloin and that makes a meals meat 2.00.  That was my budget when my oldest was three ( 43 years ago). .   
Tilapia filets were five dollars a bag.    

Black olives were BOGO. 
Corn 2/1 
Strawberries 2.00
Bread was 1.25 , bins .88 and there was an .20 ibotta on each.   

Most of it was either on sale really cheap, or cheap with a coupon, sale, ibotta ir a combination,   

This is the time of the month that the coupons are up on .  That takes me about half an hour to print two coupons for the things I may want.    They are filed in a binder under categories so I can find them fast.   0ther than that, I spend about ten minutes a week looking at favado to see if anything at the stores I am going to is matched with a coupon.    The coupon inserts are dated and placed on a file folder so I can quickly pull the coupons if they work.   Note the dollar three match ups are not always correct.   You have to pay close attention to the size of the packages and not all dollar trees carry the name brands.   Ibotta takes about two minutes while I unpack the groceries 
I generally can save an additional six dollars or so a week besides the regular sale prices.  Certain stores have better buys on certain things.  It os to your benefit to know what is cheapest regularly at which store. I never buy bananas anywhere but Costco.  The experts will tell you it is a waste to buy organic bananas.  Cheese is cheapest at grocery outlet and Costco.   I buy tillamook blocks whenever they are 250 a pound or less. 

Stocking affords you the luxury of only buying what's on sale.  This week, it was mostly protein next week, it may be frozen veggies and a chicken or hamburger.   It lets us eat well on less money.    My average for four of us is 75.00 a week.    That is half the USDA stats for thrifty cooking and we eat meat and facilitate a vegetarian and a diabetic diet.   

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