Ten Things to Stop Wasting Money On at the Grocery Store

Posted on 02/25/2010

Groceries are likely a huge part of your budget. Sure, food is a necessity but getting ripped off at the super market is not. Here are ten things at the grocery store to stop wasting your money on.

Pancake Mix - Don’t waste money on something you can make much cheaper. It’s actually comprised of low-cost ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. Use this simple Food Network recipe for pancake mix, store it in an airtight container and keep it handy for weekend mornings.

Applesauce - This is another food that is incredibly easy and cheap to make yourself. You’ll be shocked at just how simple it really is when you use this recipe from Cooks.com. Not only will you pay less, but you’ll know exactly what the ingredients are.

Bagged Salad - Take a minute to compare the price of bagged salad with the price of head of lettuce. You’ll find that buying a full head of lettuce will give you more greens for less green. Simply cut out the core, wash it and stuff it in a plastic storage bag for salads whenever you want one.

Frozen Meals - Frozen meals can often be over-priced and unhealthy. Look for cheaper, healthier alternatives. Your new option may require a little bit more work, but it will pay off.

Cake Mix - Just like pancake mix, cake mix is quite simple to make. Check out easy five-ingredient cake mixes like this one from RecipeZaar.com. Whip up extra and store in plastic bags so you have it ready to go when it’s needed.

Products by the Register - Grocery stores know you’re likely to make impulse buys at the register. Need gum? Head to the candy aisle where it’s much cheaper than at the checkout. Otherwise, avoid temptation of these over-priced items.

Oatmeal Packets - Individually packaged oatmeal is basically just regular oatmeal mixed with extras like brown sugar, nuts and raisins. Save money by purchasing plain oatmeal in bulk and adding your own sugar or nuts.

Excess Fruits and Veggies - Some experts say Americans throw away 14 percent of the food they purchase. Perishable foods like fruits and veggies are a big part of that. If you have a tendency of tossing out uneaten food, try buying less in the produce department. Substitute some fresh fruit and vegetables for frozen or canned items until you know exactly how much your family can eat before the food goes bad.

Prepared Foods - Prepared foods are convenient, but be prepared to pay a premium for that convenience. Buy these items selectively. Instead, save money by cooking foods yourself.

Paper Towels - Paper towels can be bad for your pocket book and the environment. Instead, try switching to washable rags when cleaning. You’ll be going green and saving green at the same time.

By Alison Storm

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Posted on 02.25.10 at 3:48 PM

In most stores over here in the UK it's pretty impossible to have identical items priced differently, so marking up impulse buys at the check-out is pretty hard to do. Stores may put 'premium' purchases under your nose, but they can't offer the same product in the same store at two different prices.

T Town

Posted on 02.25.10 at 4:23 PM

The pancake mix is a very simple recipe, but it requires buttermilk to actually make the pancakes. I never have buttermilk and since it's dairy it spoils quickly. I'd rather spend $2 on instant mix and only need water than worry about buying pints of buttermilk every time I want pancakes.


Posted on 02.25.10 at 6:11 PM

You can make buttermilk - it takes almost no effort.
1 cup of milk
1 tsp of lemon juice or white vinegar

Let sit for 10 minutes and use!


Posted on 02.26.10 at 7:30 AM

Love the tip on making your own buttermilk. Thanks!

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