One way people can save a lot of money over time is by buying cheap food from the grocery store. Take advantage of deals and buy good bulk foods. Save your money and spend it in different areas in your life!
Groceries are a necessity for every single person. Learn how to buy cheap food from the grocery store and save a ton of money over time. Cheap food does not necessarily mean unhealthy or gross either. Pick a solid base of food and you (or your family) won’t even be able to tell you are on a budget.
Meats are a staple for nearly every person in the world. They are the base for your groceries and you can save up or spend a lot of money just by your meat selection each week.
- Chicken Breasts – Cheap, easy, and used in a ton of great recipes, chicken breasts and be bought in bulk for under $1 per breast. They are not the cheapest meat, but are very versatile.
- Ground Beef – Ground beef can be mixed into and within a ton of different recipes. You can pay a premium for more lean cuts, but consider just draining the regular version extra well after cooking and you’ll hardly notice a different.
- Pork Chops – Pork is often cheaper than chicken with less fat. Some pork chops come in under $1 per pound, enough to feed 2-3 people in a single meal.
- Pork Shoulder / Roast – Shoulders and roasts are great to be cooked in bulk. Especially when on sale, a single roast can feed a family for multiple meals.
- Ham – Ham is another cheap meat that can be bought in bulk and used for multiple meals. It is also versatile in many ways from sandwiches to stir fries, making it a staple in the cheap food area.
- Potatoes – Bulk potatoes in 25 pound bags are extremely cost efficient. As well, potatoes last a month or more if stored in a cool and dry environment. From scalloped to mashed to roast, potatoes can be cooked in a large number of ways too.
- Rice – Bulk rice is insanely cheap. While not as versatile as potatoes, rice soaks in your flavours nicely which makes it an ideal side for stir fries and non-American dishes.
- Pasta – Pasta is packed full of carbs to fill you up and buying it in bulk is very cheap. There are a large number of varieties of pasta, making it a staple in any cheap food list.
Cheap Fruits & Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are always a little trickier as they have a quicker expiry date than other foods. Be careful not to buy too many and end up throwing them in the garbage. These are some of the most cost efficient vegetables you can buy:
- Broccoli – A whole head of broccoli is cheap and can fill a person or more.
- Carrots – Carrots are dirt cheap and are cook both raw and cooked up.
- Peas and Corn – Frozen peas and corn can be bought in bulk for cheap and become an easy side to any meal.
- Lettuce – Lettuce is the basic green and can be bought in large quantities for cheap.
- Onions – Onions are the perfect vegetable to “mix in” with other foods and can be bought in bulk for very cheap. They are more versatile than you may think.
- Apples – Apples come in a variety of different families and types and are cheap. They last a while too so consider going for the big bulk bags for extra savings.
- Bananas – Banananas are the perfect cheap food fruit. Buy them in bunches of 5-7 for generally under a dollar, giving you a side snack every day of the week.
Other Cheap Foods
- Eggs – Eggs are healthy and the perfect breakfast food. You can buy them in bulk for cheap, usually under 25 cents per egg.
- Seasonings – This one might not be so obvious off the start because seasonings can price out at $5+ per bag verses sauces which look to be only $1-3. However, seasonings will last you for months longer, are generally healthier, and are flexible to any meal. Some seasonings staples include garlic powder, ginger, salt, pepper, cumin, chilli powder, and basil.
- Bread – Loafs of bread are cheap and easy to work into any meal. If you aren’t too picky, plain white loaves can be under $2 for a whole week worth of carbs.
General Cheap Food Tips
- Buy in bulk – You’ll carry a higher initial cost buying food in bulk, but you will be cheaper in the long run. This tip is especially true for things that don’t have an expiration date.
- Buy frozen – Frozen meat is often cheaper than their fresh counterparts. Chicken breasts taste the same frozen or fresh and you’ll end up saving good money.
- Buy food in its simplest form – If you compare regular plain meat with a specialty pre-flavoured kind, you will always find that plain is cheaper. Stores try to entice you with pre-flavoured options so that they make more money but it is just as easy to sauce or season your food yourself rather than paying a premium!
- Take advantage of deals – Be flexible when going into the grocery store in order to find cheap food that is on sale that week. The more you go grocery shopping, the better you will recognize good deals.
- Opt for spices over sauces – Premade BBQ sauces seem like a great deal, but they are loaded with unhealthy sugars and
- Look for dated discounts – When meat is a day or two from its grocery expiry date, stores put it on a 20-40% discount price to try and get it off the shelves. Most of the time, the expiry date is a guideline only and meat is fine to keep in your freeze for a few days past this date. Pro tip: put the meat in your freezer and extend its life even further.
- Avoid single meal meats and sides – Meat that is only enough for one meal will always be the least cost-efficient. Side dishes are the exact same. Stay away from single box stuffing or potatoes and things like Sidekick noodle meals. They seem cheap at only $1 each but these ingredients in bulk are only a few cents.
- Avoid snacks – Packaged snacks such as chips, bars, and pop are inflated and unnecessary to your diet. Consider some of the cheaper fruits and vegetables above for a better snack instead.
Follow the guidelines above for cheap food ideas and save big money at the grocery store! Let us know on Facebook or Twitter or by commenting below if you have any other cheap food ideas for the grocery store!