18 Jan FOOD Shopping on a budget.
Shopping for your family on a limited budget requires some covert Ninja skills.
You probably already know to avoid common mistakes like shopping while hungry or, even worse, taking hungry kids shopping with you or even taking the kids shopping with you altogether.
The following strategies may seem super simple, but they also really help get more meals out per Naira and keep food waste to a minimum.
1.Go Shopping with a List
Go through your kitchen and make a list of necessary item such as eggs, milk, bread, butter, sugar, vegetables, fruits and meats. Add in any extras like condiments, spices and seasonings and just one or two treats. The most important thing is to stick to your list!
2. Focus on healthy, real ingredients.
Cooking from scratch at home with fresh produce and meat or fish is a lot healthier than buying precooked frozen meals.
It also happens to be a lot cheaper. Try swapping out your favorite prepackaged or takeout foods with homemade versions.
3. Menu Plan
Menu planning is the foundation on which all other grocery savings are built on. You can shop less, avoid waste, bulk-buy specials, etc. when you plan ahead.
4.Buy Specials In Bulk
Bulk buying specials means you never pay full price. It will take a little bit of organisation and a little bit of extra money upfront, but in the long run, you save.
Buying an ingredient in larger quantities generally lowers its unit price. But buying in bulk only really saves you money if you use everything before it expires.
Buying pantry staples like rice, or beans in bulk is a great idea because they have a long shelf life. Only buy meat, chicken, fish or produce in large quantities if you plan to use it in multiple meals or freeze it for future use. For instance, you can cook up a batch of chicken breasts then use the chicken to make several recipes during the week.
5. Shop with your unique family in mind
Even if it’s “on sale,” it’s only a good buy if you will use it!
Blue cheese may be on sale, but does your family like it? As the saying goes “Butter ounshe ounje obo” (How’d like my Yoruba).
Resist the urge to shop bargains that nobody in your family will eat. Use past meal successes as the basis for future meals and then keep track of price fluctuations on the foods that you shop for the most. Of course, variety is the spice of life, so it’s great to branch out from time to time. Just don’t make every meal an experiment.
6. Shop Outside The Supermarket.
For fruit and veg, I visit the local market or go to the local markets because it’s a lot cheaper and better quality than the supermarkets.
7. Don’t Waste Anything
Learn to use your leftovers to make new dishes. There are so many ways you use leftovers to make new dishes.
8. Get out there and shop for yourself.
I like to go to the market and get a feel for the newest produce and literally compare the market.
Now I’d like to say, what works for me, won’t necessarily work for you.
Get out there and find your own formula.