Sunday, January 28, 2018

Food Shopping & Grocery inspiration to reduce costs

With one month of the New Year down one of my goals was to try and reduce our grocery spending.  In October I stopped drinking Diet Coke altogether so I know I'm already saving money there.  I only bought the boxes of cans of Diet Coke when they were half price however I always had Diet Coke in the house.  I haven't had a Diet Coke for 4 months which has been great.

I thought I would post a few inspiration articles to help with the grocery budgets.  My goal this year is to shop at Aldi first then Woollies second.  Our shops whilst in the same shopping centre are not close together so I get lazy and when I get to Woollies I just finish my shop.  I know Aldi is so much cheaper for cheese, butter, yoghurt, english muffins, wraps, fruit toast, tinned food, rice, pasta etc. so I just need to face facts that I have to go from one shop and then to the other to get the rest.  Lots of Aldi fruit and veggies are packed for families ie a whole bag of potatoes so I might want to by 3-4 potatoes rather than a whole bag so I find that some of the fruit and veg options at Aldi don't work for my family.  That being said, I'm determined to cut my grocery budget without compromising family meals or snacks.  I need to do more school lunch box baking this year as I just got out of the habit sometimes.  Here's a few links to give you some ideas and inspiration to reduce costs.

Wendy from My Abundant Life has been on A Current Affair and has lots of helpful tips on how to live a wonderful life on a budget.  I still don't know how on earth she keeps her grocery budget for one month for her family of 4 to $180 as most people would spend more than that in a week.  I need to get a coffee and read through more of her blog again.  I now with her shampoos and hand soaps etc. she dilutes them so gets twice as much out of them and stock piles when things are on special.  Check out her blog for inspiration.  

Celia Mason from Fig Jam and Lime Cordial blog has lots of way to reduce household waste and this article is worth a read.  Also she is the Queen of Sourdough bread and has just updated her recipe and instructions with pictures.

Melissa has a post about surviving on $130 per week for groceries.

Here's some budget tips for $42 per week and naturally this does not include meat however you can still pick up some worth while tips.  Here is an article about the same family and how they are now ahead.

I found this family on Instagram last week very inspiring growing veggies for their family of 6.  

Australian Jody Allen has her weekly shopping list down to $50 and has written a book.  She cooks in bulk to have meals on hand. 

Another Aussie Mother & Daughter book called "Feed your Family for $75 a Week" by Cynthia & Alisa Mayne.

One other thing I am doing again is getting out the cold hard cash for 4 weeks of food shopping and putting it into separate zip lock bags with the date of the Monday on a little card inside.  This way I can see how much money is spent and left vs eftpos at the supermarket.  Cash is such a reminder of how much you have to spend.  If you have never done this take the money out weekly or monthly and it will change the way you spend.

Hopefully you and I can get some inspiration from some of these posts.  No one way is correct however any tip to help reduce the household family grocery budget is worth a read.


  1. I'm constantly looking for ways to reduce our grocery bill, so I will be keen to read some of the links you provided. I struggle to get our bill as low as some because there are some things I will not compromise on for reasons of ethics or quality. For example I won't buy anything made in China, and I try to buy Australian made if it's possible for that product. Unless money is really tight I buy free range chicken, and eggs which are always going to be more expensive, and good quality bread and milk, I like to support local, and that equates to dollars. For our family of 5, given my personal preferences, a realistic budget is $200-$250 a week, but it seems like so much, and we often go over, $1000 a month minimum just on food!! I've started tracking our spending accurately since we've returned from holidays, and we spent $228 last week. Like you I've started doing the Aldi/Coles shop, it is a pain, but it is helping.

    I'd love it if you would do regular posts on how your monthly grocery spend went, with tips and hints, we could all do with supporting each other in this.

    1. I now what you mean about the monthly total it seems huge when you add up 4 weeks just for food.

  2. I'm always interested to see what tips others have for reducing grocery spend. I'm like Cheryl in that ethics come into decisions I make. I try to keep costs down by having meat-free meals sometimes and by buying some things in bulk and looking for specials. I also grow a bit of our own veg and how much there is of that depends on time of year. I haven't shopped at Aldi because, like you, I didn't want to add yet another shop to those I already frequent. I might have to start thinking about that though. Meg:)

    1. Seriously you have to shop at much cheaper for things.

  3. I like stock piling items that I use all the time and wish I'd done it much earlier than a just a few years back. I never stray from my brand of shampoo/conditioner, deodorant, soap, dish liquid so I buy up when it's half price. My Olay night cream is usually $35 for a 50g tub - Woolies currently have it out for $17 so I buy 2 (or more), saving $18 instantly. I do the same for my moisturiser, always getting it when it's half price. I buy 1/2 price toothbrushes, batteries, wet wipes and dishwasher tabs. You just can't go wrong. Mount Franklin bottled water is out for $6.50 for a pack of 24 x 600 ml bottles...that's 27c per bottle ... and in SA you get 10c refund when you take to a recycle point.
    I buy fresh corn on the cob, strip it off and freeze it. Today I bought some for .50c/ cheap as one cob is worth 2 small cans and much better for you. It freezes well for use in casseroles, bakes, muffins etc. As long as you use the supply, canned goods are a good bargain to stock pile too.
    I must say, well done you, for giving up Diet Coke. That stuff is poison!

    Cheers - Joolz xx

    1. I'm with you I only buy the shampoo and conditioner when it's half price. For a standard household item they are very expensive. Thanks for your tips.