Tip # 4
Shop the sales and stock up on items to last you until the next one comes along.
The previous tips focused on how it was possible to cook more meals at home even when time is limited. These next few tips will give you ideas on how to save money and still eat well. The most obvious way is to shop the sales. I know this takes time but it truly can save you a lot of money in the long run. Typically grocery stores will run sales on a particular item every 6 weeks so buy enough of that product to last that long. Then you will only be buying it while it is on sale.
Many times my grocery store will have buy one get one free sales on their meats. That is the time that I stock up. The pot roast we are having tonight is a good example of that. Even the roasting chicken we had last week was a buy one get one free sale item. In this way, I am never paying full price for my meats.
Also, don't always be brand loyal. I used to buy the same brands all the time, but now I will go for the best-priced item. I have discovered that there are plenty of other brands that my family enjoys as well or even better. Occasionally you'll find a brand that isn't to your liking. You'll know for next time to avoid that one. After all, throwing an undesirable product away doesn't save you money.
In the same way, don't always be store loyal. I used to shop only at one specific grocery store but not anymore. If one grocer is having a huge sale on produce, I will shop there. Sometimes, I will even shop at more than one store. (I'm fortunate that I have a Giant Eagle, Marcs, Buehler's and Aldi's all on one street so I am not wasting gas driving all over town -- that would not save me money because of the price of gas these days!)
If a store is out of a sale item, be sure to get a rain check if it is available. Then don't forget to use it.
I know it takes time to look over the sales ad but it is worth your effort. The key is to make this part of your weekly routine. You can save fifty percent or more when you shop the sales and stock up. You may want to keep track of your savings so you can prove it to yourself. Sometimes your store receipt will do the work for you and show you your savings. Let us know how much you are saving!