Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 42

Thread: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

  1. #1
    God/dess rickdugan's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    4,564
    Thanks
    4,391
    Thanked 7,470 Times in 2,712 Posts
    My Mood
    Amused

    Default Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Given how bad things are getting in the grocery stores, it felt like a good time to start a thread specifically for saving on food and other household items, like cleaning supplies, health & beauty items, etc. Around here even basic things like pork and ground beef are running $5+ per pound and prices have jacked up on a lot of other stuff too. Any ideas or tricks that you are using to cope with higher prices are welcome and could be helpful for others on here.

    Some of the things I've been doing include:

    Cooking a lot more at home. For most people food is the biggest monthly expense behind housing. I've always been a decent cook but I've been brushing up on my recipes a lot lately. There's a recipe for virtually anything online now - it's awesome. I'm also cooking in larger batches and freezing leftovers when I can. Anything in a liquid or red sauce freezes really well.

    Reducing food waste. With leftovers that aren't good for freezing I've been making things like quesadillas, hash, alfredo dishes, soup (when I have bones for stock), rice pudding and lots of other stuff. There are a ton of recipes online specifically for using leftover meat and other items. My goal is for there to be very little food waste if I can help it, not only for the cost savings but also the damned principle of throwing away food during a time like this.

    Planning my shopping trips. I make my shopping list first and mostly stick to it to avoid impulse purchases. Then I work the store circulars and plug in where I'm getting each item. I generally plan for 2 or 3 stops. When I need something not on sale anywhere I use the store I believe will be the cheapest. For cleaning supplies, pet food and health/beauty stuff it's almost always Walmart, but for other items it depends on whether I need a name brand or if a store brand works (more on that below). When I need lots of produce that isn't on sale anywhere I add Aldi's to my list of stops since their produce is often cheap and good (but often needs to be used quickly, lol).

    Capitalizing on meat sales. The meat that hits my house is often whatever is on sale that week. The problem around here lately is that good meat sales are few and far between, so when there is something relatively cheap I double up on it and throw the extra in the freezer. I also buy in bulk, which is often cheaper per pound, and break packages down into freezer bags, especially during sales. I try to have 7-10 days of different meats in the freezer so that I'm flexible on any given week, especially if the sales are really bad.

    Being flexible with brands. I've been experimenting more with store brands on certain items. I don't like a lot of the Walmart store stuff, but we have a local supermarket chain (Publix) that does a good job with them and Aldi's has some good stuff too (along with plenty of not-so-good things). It's been trial and error for sure, but nowadays the store I end up using for a particular item is often the one which has the store brand I like the best - unless a sale on a good name brand is cheaper!. Sometimes when I don't need a lot of name brands or cleaners/soap/pharmacy stuff and the like I can cut out the Walmart stop altogether.

    Anyway, these are just some of the things I have done to keep grocery costs under control. I'm sure others have their own strategies worth sharing. For example I've heard that the dollar stores can be a great stop for certain items but I have limited experience with them.

  2. The Following 7 Users Say Thank You to rickdugan For This Useful Post:


  3. #2
    Banned Eric Stoner's Avatar
    Joined
    Oct 2006
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    5,150
    Thanks
    1,261
    Thanked 1,430 Times in 888 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Rick you are taking me back to the days of my "yoot" when I'd clip coupons for my mother ; we made our own chopped meat and sausage ; my grandmother would bake bread and rolls and we grew a lot of our own veggies.

    We had 4 grocery stores to choose from : Pathmark , A & P, Shop-Rite and Waldbaum's. My grandmother would peruse the circulars and ads from each and then make a list of what to buy from which store.

  4. #3
    God/dess
    Joined
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    6,822
    Thanks
    2,814
    Thanked 5,520 Times in 3,100 Posts
    My Mood
    Angelic

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Store brands are sometimes better.

  5. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to slowpoke For This Useful Post:


  6. #4
    God/dess whirlerz's Avatar
    Joined
    May 2004
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    26,980
    Thanks
    55,371
    Thanked 25,806 Times in 13,174 Posts
    Blog Entries
    1
    My Mood
    Aggressive

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Having livestock, if you can?

    Chickens are allowed in my area


  7. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to whirlerz For This Useful Post:


  8. #5
    Banned Eric Stoner's Avatar
    Joined
    Oct 2006
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    5,150
    Thanks
    1,261
    Thanked 1,430 Times in 888 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by whirlerz View Post
    Having livestock, if you can?

    Chickens are allowed in my area
    NYC allows hens. Roosters are illegal because of the noise. No geese , ducks or turkeys allowed.

  9. #6
    God/dess
    Joined
    Nov 2019
    Posts
    2,918
    Thanks
    11,371
    Thanked 9,066 Times in 2,650 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    I’m a health nut, so I like quality food.

    1) Aldi’s-best place for affordable produce and it’s decent quality
    2) I hit the health market on their 10% off day to get my health food
    3) having lots of healthy to go snacks and meals, so I’m not tempted to eat out
    Focus more on what you want than on what you donít want

  10. The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to moneybags For This Useful Post:


  11. #7
    God/dess rickdugan's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    4,564
    Thanks
    4,391
    Thanked 7,470 Times in 2,712 Posts
    My Mood
    Amused

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Stoner View Post
    Rick you are taking me back to the days of my "yoot" when I'd clip coupons for my mother ; we made our own chopped meat and sausage ; my grandmother would bake bread and rolls and we grew a lot of our own veggies.

    We had 4 grocery stores to choose from : Pathmark , A & P, Shop-Rite and Waldbaum's. My grandmother would peruse the circulars and ads from each and then make a list of what to buy from which store.
    Been there lol, clipping coupons that my mother told me to cut out. She had this special plastic container that she used to keep them in organized by food type. But even that and circular riding wasn't enough to guarantee that we had enough food on the table every night, especially during the later part of the 70s.

    I think that those experiences made me forever sensitive to the price of food, regardless of how much money I make, and prone to ensuring that my freezer chest and pantry are always full - though I wouldn't call it "hoarding" exactly lol.

  12. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to rickdugan For This Useful Post:


  13. #8
    God/dess Zofia's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Durham, North Carolina
    Posts
    2,383
    Thanks
    2,813
    Thanked 2,292 Times in 911 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Last year, BF and I gave daughter the responsibility for shopping and cooking for us four dinners per week. We gave her a budget of $80/week to spend on four dinners. She started out shopping at Whole Foods (whole paycheck - LOL). Pretty quickly she realized that she couldn't stretch our budget to cover four meals a week at Whole Foods. So, she started shopping around. I introduced her to circulars and shoppers cards. She's got a Vic card from Harris Teeter now. (The local Kroger brand.) It's funny when we go on ski trips, she finds the local Kroger owned store to begin her shopping because she's still responsible for dinners. We had pasta a night and some salads, but she found a bargain on steaks too! She's becoming a pretty adept shopper. She has all the grocery store discount cards, she buys her gas with her Harris-Teeter/Kroger discound. I am so proud!

    Z

  14. The Following 9 Users Say Thank You to Zofia For This Useful Post:


  15. #9
    God/dess
    Joined
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    6,822
    Thanks
    2,814
    Thanked 5,520 Times in 3,100 Posts
    My Mood
    Angelic

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by whirlerz View Post
    Having livestock, if you can?

    Chickens are allowed in my area

    Ever build a fence to hold hogs? I do not plan on it.

    A ten dollar sack of laying pellets is now fifteen dollars.
    Last edited by slowpoke; 04-05-2022 at 02:30 PM.

  16. #10
    God/dess
    Joined
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    7,892
    Thanks
    6,070
    Thanked 10,055 Times in 4,552 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by slowpoke View Post
    Ever build a fence to hold hogs? I do not plan on it.

    A ten dollar sack of laying pellets is now fifteen dollars.
    In TX you don't need to buy hogs. There are feral hogs everywhere.

  17. The Following User Says Thank You to eagle2 For This Useful Post:


  18. #11
    Senior Member
    Joined
    Oct 2018
    Posts
    163
    Thanks
    221
    Thanked 251 Times in 93 Posts
    My Mood
    Yeehaw

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    ok I have to say it, because it worked for me... consider going plant based or more plant based/meat from time to time/meat as luxury etc
    I am not trying to preach on anyone's lifestyle, just saying you'll more than likely save $ if you're not eating take out vegan comfort food or buying $18 buddha bowls.
    Here are some plant based meal ideas on a budget
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EpfvEz-91Q ($2/meal)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zyxtGSszt0E
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ISLFutgh2mI
    also buy a coffee maker!!! *HUGE* savings in the long haul

  19. The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to bananaqueen For This Useful Post:


  20. #12
    God/dess rickdugan's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    4,564
    Thanks
    4,391
    Thanked 7,470 Times in 2,712 Posts
    My Mood
    Amused

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Zofia View Post
    Last year, BF and I gave daughter the responsibility for shopping and cooking for us four dinners per week. We gave her a budget of $80/week to spend on four dinners. She started out shopping at Whole Foods (whole paycheck - LOL). Pretty quickly she realized that she couldn't stretch our budget to cover four meals a week at Whole Foods. So, she started shopping around. I introduced her to circulars and shoppers cards. She's got a Vic card from Harris Teeter now. (The local Kroger brand.) It's funny when we go on ski trips, she finds the local Kroger owned store to begin her shopping because she's still responsible for dinners. We had pasta a night and some salads, but she found a bargain on steaks too! She's becoming a pretty adept shopper. She has all the grocery store discount cards, she buys her gas with her Harris-Teeter/Kroger discound. I am so proud!

    Z
    Very nice. Not only are you teaching her shopping skills but I'm guessing that it has pushed her to improve her cooking skills too. That idea alone was worth starting this thread. I have to keep that in mind for a few years from now when my oldest hits that age.

  21. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to rickdugan For This Useful Post:


  22. #13
    Banned Eric Stoner's Avatar
    Joined
    Oct 2006
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    5,150
    Thanks
    1,261
    Thanked 1,430 Times in 888 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by rickdugan View Post
    Been there lol, clipping coupons that my mother told me to cut out. She had this special plastic container that she used to keep them in organized by food type. But even that and circular riding wasn't enough to guarantee that we had enough food on the table every night, especially during the later part of the 70s.

    I think that those experiences made me forever sensitive to the price of food, regardless of how much money I make, and prone to ensuring that my freezer chest and pantry are always full - though I wouldn't call it "hoarding" exactly lol.
    Today , I am sort of a hybrid. I still clip coupons and buy stuff on sale. I make my own soup but I don't grind my own hamburger meat. I can . I have a meat grinder but I just can't be bothered. I still grow some veggies but I'm limited to stuff the squirrels don't like lol. I got tired of growing corn and strawberries just for them lol. Oddly , fish USED to be a bargain food and now it is expensive and you are supposed to limit your intake because of the mercury. Luckily I can afford to eat out and buy a nice steak if I want to. But like Rick I grew up in a limited income home where every penny counted.
    I started working when I was 14 and at 16 I was working full time ( 35 hours a week ) and going to high school.
    Last edited by Eric Stoner; 04-07-2022 at 08:09 AM.

  23. #14
    God/dess
    Joined
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    6,822
    Thanks
    2,814
    Thanked 5,520 Times in 3,100 Posts
    My Mood
    Angelic

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by eagle2 View Post
    In TX you don't need to buy hogs. There are feral hogs everywhere.
    The little ones can be delicious, but the palatability of the big ones is debatable

  24. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to slowpoke For This Useful Post:


  25. #15
    God/dess SnuffleUffleGrass's Avatar
    Joined
    Mar 2009
    Location
    HearstCastle, Rosebud
    Posts
    8,643
    Thanks
    22,123
    Thanked 16,991 Times in 6,519 Posts
    My Mood
    Angelic

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Thanks to reading reddit I found out a LOT of generic brand food is often coming from the same sources as brand named food. You have to try and see if you like the quality.

    Believe it or not Wal Mart's Great Value label items are consistently great. & Costco is all high quality items, meats, grocery and liquor. A Costco card pays for itself many times over.

  26. The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to SnuffleUffleGrass For This Useful Post:


  27. #16
    Featured Member LoveyD's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2021
    Posts
    1,479
    Thanks
    5,780
    Thanked 5,483 Times in 1,408 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    The Get upside app will help you save on gas and restaurant meal purchases.

  28. The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to LoveyD For This Useful Post:


  29. #17
    God/dess rickdugan's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    4,564
    Thanks
    4,391
    Thanked 7,470 Times in 2,712 Posts
    My Mood
    Amused

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by SnuffleUffleGrass View Post
    Believe it or not Wal Mart's Great Value label items are consistently great. & Costco is all high quality items, meats, grocery and liquor. A Costco card pays for itself many times over.
    Idk. I wonder how many folks struggling to make ends meet are ponying up for a Costco card. When I was a member I couldn't even pull into the parking lot without being $3-400 poorer. The biggest problem was how much of each item I had to buy. I was throwing away too much produce because we couldn't eat it all before it went bad and many of the grocery item quantities were a 6-12 month supply for my family.

    For me about the only things that were worth buying were meat (sometimes), frozen stuff, toilet paper, paper towels and drinks. But I didn't find the regular Walmart prices on that stuff to be much worse and I was doing better on meats with grocery store sales. Now I'm sure it all depends on what you normally buy, so it might work out really good for you, but for me it was a definite money loser.

  30. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to rickdugan For This Useful Post:


  31. #18
    Veteran Member StellaRose's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2017
    Posts
    561
    Thanks
    1,624
    Thanked 1,118 Times in 429 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Man. I bought this Gardyn hydroponic system for growing fresh veggies to eat. BUT then the internet went out when I was out of town for almost a month and I wasn’t at home for a good while to reboot the system (and save a lot of the plants from dying) waaaah. Ugh. Oh well, just got to keep going and improving there.

    I do have a bread maker and thankfully ever since I found out I can eat gluten after all, has been a huge relief. So much better than store bought bread.

    Granted I’m not that price sensitive when it comes to food. I try to get local and organic whenever I can. But on the other hand, I am totally a sucker for a lot of the processed food item is sitting in the clearance bin. Oh well.

    I have a hard time giving up on meat, but it would probably be better if I did, and rely on my amino acid complex drink powder. But oh well.

  32. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to StellaRose For This Useful Post:


  33. #19
    God/dess Zofia's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Durham, North Carolina
    Posts
    2,383
    Thanks
    2,813
    Thanked 2,292 Times in 911 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by rickdugan View Post
    Very nice. Not only are you teaching her shopping skills but I'm guessing that it has pushed her to improve her cooking skills too. That idea alone was worth starting this thread. I have to keep that in mind for a few years from now when my oldest hits that age.
    Oh yeah, her cooking skills have improved.

    Z

  34. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Zofia For This Useful Post:


  35. #20
    God/dess
    Joined
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    6,822
    Thanks
    2,814
    Thanked 5,520 Times in 3,100 Posts
    My Mood
    Angelic

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    About done planting the garden. I hope we dont get frost at Easter.

  36. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to slowpoke For This Useful Post:


  37. #21
    Banned Eric Stoner's Avatar
    Joined
    Oct 2006
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    5,150
    Thanks
    1,261
    Thanked 1,430 Times in 888 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by slowpoke View Post
    About done planting the garden. I hope we dont get frost at Easter.
    I always wait until around Mother's Day to plant.

  38. #22
    God/dess rickdugan's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    4,564
    Thanks
    4,391
    Thanked 7,470 Times in 2,712 Posts
    My Mood
    Amused

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    I was thinking of this thread when I was in the grocery store over the weekend. Talk about capitalizing on sale meat and some basic cooking skills.

    The Easter sales had arrived and I found a standing rib roast at literally half the normal price and a whole smoked ham for an even more deeply discounted price. Add a couple of packages of Italian sausages on sale and my meat shopping was done for the week.

    The rib roast was cooked right away and accompanied by mashed potatoes and gravy with the leftover beef being repurposed into a beef stroganoff. The sausages were cooked into my homemade red sauce for a night where I just don't have the time to do anything besides boil some pasta. The ham will start in a New England boiled dinner (easy to cook on a weekday if one can be home while it boils) and the leftovers will become ham sandwiches and, when the weekend hits, a ham hash (one of my kids' favorites).

    The best part is that I walked out of the store spending easily $70 less than I normally do on a weekend shopping trip. Cha ching. I'm sure that our average per head dinner cost this week is going to be well south of $2 for some really great food - including that prime rib roast!

  39. The Following User Says Thank You to rickdugan For This Useful Post:


  40. #23
    God/dess
    Joined
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    6,822
    Thanks
    2,814
    Thanked 5,520 Times in 3,100 Posts
    My Mood
    Angelic

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Stoner View Post
    I always wait until around Mother's Day to plant.
    Normally I wait until Easter. For some unknown reason I started trying to keep things alive right after Thanksgiving. I will not do that again.
    Last edited by slowpoke; 04-12-2022 at 03:50 PM. Reason: typos

  41. The Following User Says Thank You to slowpoke For This Useful Post:


  42. #24
    Banned Eric Stoner's Avatar
    Joined
    Oct 2006
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    5,150
    Thanks
    1,261
    Thanked 1,430 Times in 888 Posts

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by rickdugan View Post
    I was thinking of this thread when I was in the grocery store over the weekend. Talk about capitalizing on sale meat and some basic cooking skills.

    The Easter sales had arrived and I found a standing rib roast at literally half the normal price and a whole smoked ham for an even more deeply discounted price. Add a couple of packages of Italian sausages on sale and my meat shopping was done for the week.

    The rib roast was cooked right away and accompanied by mashed potatoes and gravy with the leftover beef being repurposed into a beef stroganoff. The sausages were cooked into my homemade red sauce for a night where I just don't have the time to do anything besides boil some pasta. The ham will start in a New England boiled dinner (easy to cook on a weekday if one can be home while it boils) and the leftovers will become ham sandwiches and, when the weekend hits, a ham hash (one of my kids' favorites).

    The best part is that I walked out of the store spending easily $70 less than I normally do on a weekend shopping trip. Cha ching. I'm sure that our average per head dinner cost this week is going to be well south of $2 for some really great food - including that prime rib roast!
    Congratulations ! You just won "Shopper Of The Week " lol.

  43. #25
    God/dess rickdugan's Avatar
    Joined
    Apr 2010
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    4,564
    Thanks
    4,391
    Thanked 7,470 Times in 2,712 Posts
    My Mood
    Amused

    Default Re: Saving on Groceries and Household Items

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Stoner View Post
    Congratulations ! You just won "Shopper Of The Week " lol.
    LOL. I know that this was a bit self congratulatory, but I really was just that pleased with how it worked out.

    What's funny is that I'll drop a large sum of money on a night out at the strip club without blinking, but I'm inordinately happy when I can shave a few twenties off of a weekend shopping trip. As I indicated above, my childhood experiences in the 70s have instilled this high degree of food price sensitivity in me as well as a strong need to keep my fridge, pantry and deep freezer amply stocked. I spent too many nights laying in bed hungry as a kid.

    This all sounds a little OCD I know but otherwise I'm as laid back as anyone you'd meet. Thankfully my food related hang ups generally don't follow me to high-end restaurants (perhaps because I never saw the inside of one as a kid), except that I do get a bit irritated when: (1) I order an expensive steak and they deliver a mediocre piece of meat to my table; and (2) when I'm paying good money for a meal and feel like I got shorted on the amount of food I'm served.

    I just hope that what's happening now doesn't lead to a new generation of kids experiencing hunger due to years of high food prices and then having to live with the psychological consequences for the rest of their lives.

  44. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to rickdugan For This Useful Post:


Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 10
    Last Post: 01-26-2015, 07:16 PM
  2. How much do you spend on groceries per month?
    By BlkSharpie in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 30
    Last Post: 04-01-2012, 11:23 AM
  3. Couponing 101 (Save Lots on Groceries!)
    By lildreamer316 in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 04-19-2006, 05:41 PM
  4. Household Chores
    By kryssy in forum The Lounge
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 09-30-2005, 10:50 PM
  5. (long) income as household employee
    By otheia in forum Dollar Den
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 01-21-2005, 11:39 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •