One way for you to stay on top of your budget plan is to monitor how you shop for groceries. Grocery shopping can be a difficult task, especially when there are so many options. Before you go grocery shopping, make sure you have a plan so you know what your budget is and what specific items you need to buy. For this, we utilize the SMART goal making method, which was introduced a few blog posts back.
- Specific – Specify the items you need and shop ONLY for those items.
- Measurable – Know how much of each item you need.
- Achievable – Is your shopping basket within your budget?
- Relevant – Is the item related to what you need?
- Time-bound – Is this for current or future needs (e.g. Perishables or pantry items)?
Here are 3 easy ways to grocery shop on a budget while also ensuring nutrition-packed meals for you and your family:
1. Plan Ahead – Planning ahead by using the SMART goal making method ensures that you get everything you need without compromising your budget. When grocery shopping with a set meal plan, you know exactly what items to buy, reducing your chances of purchasing unnecessary items.
2. Shop Healthy – Believe it or not, shopping healthy is actually the cheaper option! When you look at your receipt from past shopping trips, often times you will notice that the majority of your purchase went towards “extra” or more convenient food choices, which tend to be high in calories and contain unhealthy chemicals. Replace the pre-packaged or microwavable meals with fresh ingredients from the produce section!
3. Save Coupons and Take Advantage of Events – Many grocery stores offer limited time discount events, such as Superstore’s Super Stock Up Days. Keep an eye out for these discount events, which frequently appear on mailed-out fliers or company websites, as they are a great opportunity to save money on grocery shopping. Also, take advantage of these events to buy non-perishable items in bulk so that you can have a readily accessible supply when you need them!
Grocery shopping on a budget is no easy task especially since there are so many options around. Keep in mind that you have a goal and that by shopping SMART, you can save money and eat healthy, nutritious foods!