Thinking about a New Year's resolution to help you save money in 2018? Heck, even if you're not, these stories might come in handy. Here are the best posts we ran in 2017 about saving money on groceries and other items.
1. Learn the tricks and hacks for your favorite stores and sites.
Love Target, Amazon, and Costco? You're in luck, because we have stories on how to save money on groceries at all three of those places.
- 10 Ways to Save Money on Amazon
- Our Best Tips for Saving Money Through Amazon's Subscribe & Save
- The Best Ways to Save Money on Groceries at Costco
- The Best Ways to Save Money on Groceries at Target
2. Don't spend money on stuff you're going to regret.
There is no bigger waste of money than when we buy stuff, get it home, and then it either breaks, doesn't work at all, or is just not good to start with. Duh, right? We've got a few suggestions on some things not to buy.
- Buy This, Not That: Whole Foods
- Buy This, Not That: IKEA Kitchen Supplies
- 7 IKEA Groceries That Just Aren't Worth It
3. Plan ahead for takeout.
Whenever possible, if you know you're going to be having takeout for dinner, try to pick it up during the day to reheat later. Most restaurants offer super-good deals to draw in the crowds during the day and you can get the same meal for a fraction of the usual price.
Read more: My Smartest Tip for Saving Money on Takeout
4. Download this app.
There are a ton of grocery apps out there, claiming to save you time and money. Unfortunately, most of them (like a lot of apps) aren't actually worth the time it takes to figure them out or the money it costs to use them. There is one, however, that is super easy and convenient to use — and it's free!
5. Don't worry so much about coupons.
Much like potato chips, it's hard to stop after just one coupon. While you can certainly save a ton of money if you have time to really work the coupon game, it's not necessary. You can save some serious grocery dollars without clipping a single coupon.
More on Coupons
6. Do some comparison shopping.
It doesn't have to be anything too involved. For example, if you have two stores near you, check a few of your go-to ingredients to see which store is typically cheaper.
More on Comparison Shopping
7. Manage your budget.
It's easier and more fun than it sounds. Promise.
Grocery Budget Tips
8. Take the shortcut.
There is no shame in the bagged salad. Or buying pasta sauce. If you need to save time or money — or both — it's totally fine.
9. Buy the cheapest sugar.
Sugar is ever consistent, always reliable — no matter what brand you buy and how much you pay. That's what makes it your best bet for finding savings. You could spend $4.50 on a four-pound bag of granulated sugar, or $2 on something the same size from a different brand and you'll get the same results when your recipe comes out of the oven.
More on Generic Pantry Staples
10. Buy the budget booze.
There's really no reason to break the bank when you're buying booze for your bar cart — especially if you're going to be using the stuff in cocktails and mixed drinks (versus drinking it straight) or if you can find any of these top-notch budget bottles.
Shop for Inexpensive Alcohol
11. Get inspired!
Want a new apartment? Or to quit your oh-so-terrible job? Throughout the year, we ran stories of real people who got their food budgets under control in order to make those things happen. Read their stories and then get inspired to make the change you want/need.