Are you looking for ways to keep your food budget down? With growing kids and busy schedules, it is easy to overspend on groceries each and every month. The good news though, is there are many things that you can do to lower your monthly grocery bill.
One of the best ways to lower your grocery bill is to keep your pantry well stocked with basics. This gives you the flexibility to buy food when the price goes down and helps save you time since you’ll have basics on hand for a quick dinner.
One of the biggest time and money savers for me has been discovering Thrive Market. Thrive Market is like an online Costco for healthy foods.
When I realized that the shampoo brand I’d been using was half the price on Thrive Market than I’d been paying at Target I was SOLD. It’s a no brainer for me to have my foods and household items delivered to me when they are so affordable. Right now you can get 25% off your order and FREE SHIPPING if you sign up here too.
There’s no monthly minimums or anything and they have a great selection of GMO free foods at prices I haven’t seen beaten anywhere else. They have monthly promotions that give you free coconut oil, granola bars, fair trade chocolate and more too!
Here are 6 foods to keep on hand that will help lower your grocery bill:
Beans (both dried and canned)
Dried beans are truly one of the most budget friendly grocery items that you can purchase. 1 cup of dried beans produces about 3 cups of cooked beans (6 servings). I love to stock up on beans when I place a Thrive Market order because they have such a great variety and some of their “canned” beans come in handy little pouches.
Since there are about 2 cups of dried beans in a 1 pound bag that is 12 servings of high protein food. You can typically buy a 1 pound bag of beans for $2, that equals about $0.16 per serving.
Canned beans are inexpensive as well (although not as much so as dried beans). With beans, you can use them as a main dish (example: beans with cornbread) or you can create add some sauce and create a big pot of chili. Lots of options. We often add beans to our ground beef to stretch it out (and add some extra nutrients).
Rice is cheap and makes a great side dish or added ingredient to be used as filler in soups or casseroles, etc. It is also a great addition to the beans that we mentioned before.
One of my favorite meals, especially when I’m grocery shopping on a budget is this easy Mujadara recipe. The flavor on this is amazing and you won’t even notice that the meal is meat-free. If you want to go for comfort food, this Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole is always a hit!
You can use potatoes in every single meal and they can be transformed many ways. Use them in soups, turn them into mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, hash browns, french fries and more!
Of course, you can never go wrong with Potato Cheese Soup. That’s pretty much the ultimate comfort food.
Small cans of tomato paste are very inexpensive (a large can of organic tomato paste is only $0.99 on Thrive Market and you’d get 25% off your first order) and can be used as the base for many sauces, soups and more. It is much cheaper to use tomato paste than to buy pre-made pasta sauces, etc.
I always keep tomato paste on hand for quick and easy meals. I use it when I make my 7 Chicken Dump Freezer Meals (which is a HUGE time and money saver).
Tomato paste is also a key ingredient in the A1 Tomato Sauce we use for our Homemade Steak and Bell Pepper Pizza, our Homemade Southern BBQ Sauce, and our Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe (this is a family favorite!).
Oats are a frugal pantry staple. Thrive Market sells organic oats in bulk and it is much cheaper than buying them in the cereal aisle.
Oatmeal makes an inexpensive breakfast, it’s great for stretching out your meat when making burgers or meatballs and oats are great for lots of other great meal ideas.
These Peanut Butter Energy Balls are a favorite with my kids. We always take them with us when we’ll be away from home for a day trip.
Instead of buying pre-flavored oatmeal, we often make this banana sweetened oatmeal from SugarBye.
Keep popcorn kernels on hand for inexpensive snack ideas. A homemade bag of popcorn can be cooked for less than $0.15 per bag. Popcorn is always a fun snack for the kids too! I love the sprouted popcorn from Thrive Market so I always stock up on that.
Do you have any inexpensive foods that you have found to keep your pantry stocked and your grocery budget down?
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