This post is sponsored by Valley Food Storage. I was compensated for the post, but all opinions are 100% my own.
I love all the fresh fruits in the summer. BBQs and family events. Food is a part of summer and it can sure wrack up the grocery bill. Our grocery bill has gotten bigger over the years as we’ve had more kids, but I still try to keep it as low as possible without crazy couponing. I have read a lot of tips and tricks about keeping your grocery bill low and have done most of these myself.
Here are 8 tips to keeping your grocery bill low this summer.
1. Grow a garden – When we had a garden (we’re now in an apartment that doesn’t have one), I loved getting all the fresh veggies every few days. We had lots of squash, zucchini, tomatoes, and peppers which means I didn’t need to buy them from the store. There are also a lot of great recipes on Pinterest to use these delicious veggies! I love this zucchini bread recipe and this super simple zucchini and chicken pasta salad is one of my husband’s favorites.
2. Shop sales – When you’re planning your meals for the week (which you should always be doing to help save money on groceries) make sure to plan meals around what’s on sale. Meats especially! There are some great websites that help you know what the sales are. Coupons 4 Utah and Freebies 2 Deals are two of my favorites.
3. Buy fruits in season – There are a lot of great fruits in season in the summer, but they come at different times throughout the summer. And when they’re in season, they’re usually cheaper and they taste better. So even though they’re selling peaches now, peaches are usually best in August. You can find when fruits are in season in your area!
4. Bulk up on good deals – When you see a really good deal, buy a few and save it for later! Apple juice was on sale the other day for only $.99 so I bought 3 instead of my weekly one. Whenever chicken is a good price I’ll buy 2 fresh packages and freeze one. I always try to keep a stock of chicken in my freezer so I never have to pay full price. At one point I had 10 jars of peanut butter because I kept getting them at amazing deals! It’s worth it in the long run. I hate paying full price when I know I could have gotten it much cheaper.
5. Go meatless once a week – We usually do breakfast for dinner once a week – it’s a meal I know all my kids will eat. Meat is the most expensive thing I buy, so cutting back a bit will help.
6. Use your food storage – Do you have food storage sitting around? You don’t want to let it expire and go to waste! I think it’s good to use some and then replenish it. If you’re looking for food storage where you don’t have to grind your own wheat or figure out how you’re going to use 10 lbs of broccoli, check out Valley Food Storage!
Their food comes in meals! So you can actually eat your food storage. The packaging is pretty small and 1 package fed my family of 5 for dinner. We tried the Pasta Primavera. I just added a little chicken to it to make it more filling and my kids ate it up! Which is saying something, because my kids can be picky eaters. But pasta always seems to do pretty well in my family. 🙂
You can buy individual packets or buy in bulk. They’ll even send you a free sample! Now, I have to be honest. I also tried the Irish Pub Cheddar Potato Soup and the Southern Style Chicken and Rice Soup and they were not great. My family wouldn’t eat it and neither would I. I think the hard thing with food storage that are meals is getting diverse flavors so it doesn’t just taste like one thing in every bite. So I would definitely stick with the pasta dishes. It would be easy to add canned chicken or even shrimp or eat it as is if you really needed to use your food storage for survival purposes.
They also sell camping food and emergency kits if you’re needing those! I do think this is a much better option than just buying bulk freeze dried veggies. And they’re not super heavy when you need to move them! Food storage is super important especially with all the natural disasters happening around the world. If you haven’t thought about food storage, it’s a good time to start. Start a little at a time and build up your stash! You can start with Valley Food Storage. 🙂
7. School Lunch – I’m not sure if they have this in other states, but in Utah they provide school lunch free for kids ages 0-18. It’s usually at a local elementary school and kids can grab a school lunch and eat in the cafeteria. Parents are welcome too and pay $3.50 if they want a lunch. My kids love this! It’s really fun for them to eat at school especially where they aren’t in elementary school yet. Ours goes from about June 13th to July 23rd Mondays through Thursdays from 11:45am to 1pm.
8. Don’t eat out! – We hardly ever eat out. Sure it’s fun and I don’t have to cook, but it’s so much money! Especially when you bring your kids. Don’t plan on eating out, plan meals for every day of the week. If you don’t want to cook, make a bigger meal and do leftovers the next night (that’s what I do). This includes lunches. All the time I see moms at the park with fast food for their kids. Just make some sandwiches, grab some fruit and crackers and do a picnic. My kids love eating at the park and they don’t care what it is, as long as we get to eat outside. Yes it takes more time, but it saves lots of money!
Hopefully you find these tips helpful this summer. We like being frugal and if you want to be frugal too, try some of these things! I’m sure you’ll see a difference in your budget.