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10 Ways to Save Money on Whole Foods

I’m wrapping up a mini-series on my 14-day, $100-per-week menu plan challenge:

Today I want to talk about how to save money on Whole Foods when you

  1. might have a small budget
  2. want to eat as healthy as possible
  3. {you fill in the blank}

I know there are lots of factors that affect how you shop for food and plan meals.

Maybe you navigate around a modest grocery budget.

Maybe you deal with food allergies (that adds expense!).

Maybe you feed a large family (yep, me too!).

Maybe you want to eat a lot (or all) organic and whole foods.

Whatever your challenge, I know we all want to save money at the grocery store.  So how do we do that?

Here are a few tips that have saved our family lots of money over the years

1.Plan your menu (here’s how to keep it simple!).  This step really will save you money!

2.Keep a running grocery and pantry list.  In other words, don’t try to wing it at the grocery store!  I forget necessities and end up spending more when I shop without a list.

3. Use coupons. I’m not an extreme coupon-er, but you’d better believe I’ll use one (or five) coupons anytime I can.

4. Buy in bulk. This is a great time and money saver if you’re a large family, but small families can buy in bulk too. Bulk grocery stores like Cosco and Winco are two options for shopping, otherwise Azure Standard is my go to for buying in bulk.  (By the way, this is what I did once with 50 pounds of Sucanat!)

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5. Stock your pantry and your freezer.  Stocking a whole foods pantry is a topic for a post I’ve been meaning to write for a long time.  For now, let me just say that keeping an organized, stocked pantry and freezer eliminates a lot of needless trips to the grocery store, which therefore eliminates extra spending.  Create a pantry and, if possible, buy an extra freezer so you can stock up on sales.

6. Keep a grocery price book or list.  I got this idea years ago from Crystal Miller.  Although I don’t stick with it religiously anymore, I know where to shop for the cheapest unit price on our favorite healthy foods.  Which brings me to the next point-

7. Don’t just shop at one grocery store. Nowhere has ALL the best prices, not that I’ve found anyway.  I rotate my grocery shopping between several super markets. Most months I’m going to hit our local farmer’s market, Aldi’s and Walmart several times, and then make a trek to Trader Joe’s or Central Market every so often.  I throw in Azure Standard and Amazon as needed.  I’m hoping to try out Cosco and Winco soon, too.

8. Buy in season. This obviously applies to fresh produce, especially if you shop locally or through co-ops. I like to stock up on fresh fruit during the summer (did you know you can freeze strawberries and tomatoes?), and organic apples in the fall (applesauce, any one?). If you like to preserve, homemade jellies and salsa are another great way to store excess food, and homemade is generally healthier and  less expensive than  store-bought.

9. Cook from scratch. It really is less expensive!

10. Eat at home. Eating out is a luxury, and if we’re going to slash the grocery  bill we’re going to have to see it as such.  It doesn’t take too many restaurant meals to equal an entire week’s worth of groceries for our family. We eat at home a lot, and save eating out for special treats.

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What would you add to this list? How do you save money on food?

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One Comment

  1. Yep! You nailed it all down . I am on THM and we have foods we need to avoid. I do things just like you! I don’t shop with Azure standard as we do not have drop off but I do shop at Costco and love it!

    Another great place for me to hit (if I am in the city, we live in the mountains) is Sprouts. They often have really, really cheap and quality produce. Like 3 bell peppers for 1$. That’s a good price for Colorado.