How to Save Money on Groceries: Top 5 Do’s and 5 Don’ts

how to save money on groceries

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how to save money on groceries

Groceries take a big piece of our monthly expenses pie. Smart shoppers definitely would not ignore savings from shopping for foods, drinks, and everyday household items. There can be a long list of ways to cut grocery bills, which may sound overwhelming for many people.

So let’s start with the top 5 do’s and 5 don’ts of grocery shopping.

Top 5 Do’s of Grocery Shopping

1. Check what’s on sale

Be sure to check what is on sale from the weekly circular of your favorite grocery stores. Focus on items that you usually buy and those that would go well with what you already have in the pantry for good dishes. Plan your meals based on the items on sale and what you’ve had.

2. Use a shopping list

I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to have a shopping list. Not only it helps to make sure you won’t forget anything important, it also limits your temptation for impulse purchases.

3. Buy what’s in season

In-season fruits and vegetables are fresher and much cheaper. Besides, produce picked at their peak usually taste the best. You also get more nutrition from those fresh foods.

4. Use coupons

Using manufacturer coupons for items on sale can double your savings. You can find numerous printable coupons from websites such as or Don’t just buy things because you have a coupon; stick to your shopping list.

5. Maximize cash back

There are a couple of ways to get cash back. One is to use cash-back credit card. For example, Amex Blue Cash Preferred offers 6% cash back on groceries. The annual cap is $6,000 for grocery spending. 

Also, don’t forget to use apps such as Ibotta for cash back for the qualifying item. Since I signed up two years ago, I’ve got nearly $300 cash back. Sign up for Ibotta now (it’s completely FREE) and start saving now

Learn more about how to get cash back from those apps.

Top 5 Don’ts of Grocery Shopping

1. Don’t go shopping when you are hungry

When you are hungry, your stomach triumphs over your brain. You tend to buy things such as cakes or candies to quench your cravings. Those impulse purchases will hurt your budget.

2. Don’t stop at the snack aisle

Try to stay away from the snack aisle. Those junk food snacks such as chips and cookies are unhealthy and can burn your wallet. Replace them with healthier snacks such as fruits and nuts. If you really need those snacks for a movie night or a family party, be sure to include the items on your shopping list and follow the plan.

3. Don’t buy prepared foods

Prepared foods are more expensive because of labor and kitchen space needed to prepare them. Instead of buying pre-cut cantaloupes or pre-made salad, just buy fresh produce and prepare it yourself. Those things require minimal time to prepare but can lower your grocery bills.

4. Don’t buy in bulk if the items are perishable

It is tempting to buy items in bulk when they are on sale but don’t that if the items are perishable unless you have a plan on processing them immediately or sharing them with others (to split the cost). Otherwise, you may have to toss part of the items, which is a big waste of food and money.

5. Don’t focus on brand names

Are you always go with brand name items? It may just be a personal preference, but buying store-brand products can really cut grocery expenses.  Some store (such as Costco’s and Trader Joes) brand items are brand-name products repackaged for a cheaper price.

how to save money on groceries

save money on groceries


  1. If there’s meat that’s on sale, I’ll buy quite a bit of it and just store it in the freezer. that way it’ll last 2-3 months.

    1. I do that too. That’s a good example of buying in bulk and prepare/store food properly to save money. Thanks for the comment.

  2. omg! I do so many of the Don’ts. I definitely need to abide by your do’s so I don’t end up over spending like I normally do!

    1. Sounds great. Good luck!

  3. These do’s and don’t are on point. Following them will save people a lot of money that can be used towards more important things.

    1. Thanks, Saidah!

  4. I love hitting the local farmers markets as soon as the right weather hits! The produce is fresh, locally grown and cheaper than the grocery stores around here. Its a great way to save money and eat healthy!

    Britt |

    1. I love shopping at local farmers markets too. I am looking forward their re-opening in May.

  5. Great tips…I currently use most of the ‘Do’s’ already! I really would like to do more couponing. Do to timing sometimes, I do shop when I’m hungry and it never turns out well lol!

    1. Thanks for the comments. Glad the tips are helpful.

  6. Great suggestions here!!! I never head to the store without a list!!!

    1. That’s great. Thanks for the comment.

  7. Not going grocery shopping when hungry is very important.I never buy preprocessed food.Great tips

    1. Thanks!

  8. Great tips. I do use most of them. I am always looking for sales and coupons.

    1. That’s good! You are great at saving money.

  9. Hello, I particularly like this subject of groceries shopping. It is great and I think i will use it soon.
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    1. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Have a great day too!

  10. I love your saving tips, I nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award

    1. Thanks so much for the nomination. I already accepted the nomination from another blogger and have posted an article about it ( I like your blog website. It is very cool. 🙂

      1. Thank you

  11. When we are in a rush sometimes we forget how expensive it can become when we don’t stop and think about how much we are spending daily! Reading this post just reminded me I don’t need someone else to cut my fruit I really can do it myself ! Thanks for the gut check 👍😀

  12. Sales and coupons are life! Great post!!

  13. Nice and to the point! Thanks for the tips.

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