Whether you are shopping for yourself, your other half or for your family, it's no secret that your weekly food shop is guilty of taking a large chunk of your pay cheque each month. But we also know that it's a necessity we can't do without - a girl's gotta eat! So to save some pennies, or in this case plenty of pounds, food blogger and savy shopper Jack Monroe , A Girl Called Jack, tells us how to shop smart, and save money. The girl knows what she is talking about.
1. Plan Ahead
It's not glamorous and sounds like the advice your nan would give you. But doing a weekly meal planner before you hit the shops means you’ll spend less, and avoid the dreaded ‘popping into the shop's’ during the week. We've all been there, you was meant to buy bread but ended up spending 20 quid on God knows what.
2. Change The Way You Shop
Supermarkets are designed to make us spend more, with more expensive items laid out at the beginning of the shop, and generally at eye level, oh cheeky sods. Try shopping ‘back to front’, and looking up and down in the aisles to avoid buying the most expensive items. The supermarkets will not outsmart us!
3. Eye For A Deal
Always be on the look out for BOGOFs and money saving deals. Look out for vouchers, coupons or any deals that can save you money. Don't worry about being the 'coupon lady' or holding up the queue, who cares about judgement when you are saving money.
4. Left Overs
It's a case of stating the obvious really, but don’t throw out leftover food. Try to incorporate left overs into your meal plan to avoid wastage.
5. Lentils, Pulses and Grains
Yes that's right. lentils, pulses and grains get to know them and make them your shopping list essential. These food gems are a great source of protein and so much cheaper than meat and fish.
6. Eat Seasonally
Buying produce in season generally means it’s cheaper and tastes its best.
7. Portion Sizes
Don’t dish up more than necessary, you’ll end up wasting food. Rather serve smaller portions, with the option to get more if needed.
8. Shop around
Some of us are more loyal to supermarkets , than we are in relationships. It doesn't matter if you've been going for years, get around a bit , try a new supermarket, shop around in shops you don't usually buy from.
For household essentials like loo roll or washing powder, try online sites like Groupon and get huge savings.
9. Budget for the month
Work out how much disposable income you have for the month, then break it down into weeks. By having that figured out, you will be more realistic about your spending week on week, and not be left scraping by at the end of the month.
10. Eat Before You Shop
Never, and we mean never shop on an empty stomach. You will fall victim and buy things you did not budget for.
The arrays of sweets and chocolate by the checkout are basically the devil, and another ploy from the supermarkets to make you spend more. Stay strong , and shop happy.
What do you think of Jack's tips, will you be giving it a go? Tweet us @sofeminineUK
This article was written by Tolani Shoneye. Tweet her @tolly_t