Frugal living is when you are conscious of where your money is going. People often think that frugal living is synonymous is being cheap. However, the difference is that being cheap can cause you to sacrifice unnecessary time and energy.
Being frugal means that you focus on the value rather than just focusing on the price. And food expenses can get out of control if you do not have a proper plan. So here are 10 tips for frugal spending on saving money on food:
Create a budget
The first thing when starting a frugal life is learning to budget. You should start by dividing into the income that comes into your house and how much you need to pay for your bills. Separate your budget and prioritize things you absolutely need.
Cook at home
Eating out can be a treat when you do it sometimes. But when you eat out all the time it can get very expensive. And cooking at home is the way to save money. You can learn some new recipes and try to cook something fun yourself. And treat yourself occasionally on the weekends.
Make a grocery shopping list
Rather than buying on impulse, make a grocery list and stick to it. Keep your budget in mind when you are making the shopping list. When you visit the store, take your grocery list out and start ticking the items that you put in your cart. Also, make your grocery list on your cellphone so you never forget it at home.
Create a meal plan
Creating a meal plan is essential to lowering your costs. You can plan your meal according to what you have left in your fridge and buy just ingredients that are left out. Having a plan will also prevent you from going out to eat and spare you from the dreadful confusion of what to eat.
Prepare your meals on the weekend if you don’t have time during the week. You can do simple tasks that will make your week easier like cutting up vegetables, making some sauces, or even marinating meat. If you are going to be busy during the week prepare full meals and refrigerate them to eat later.
When visiting the store, you should remember to stick to the list. Keep what you are going to eat in your mind. Just don’t pick something up because they are on sale. Picking something up that is on sale, that you might go to waste will just add to your grocery bills.
Grow your food
Even though you may not have an extensive backyard, plant some herbs at home. Growing herbs does not take much space and they will help you cut down your costs. Plant herbs like basil, coriander, parsley, and mint in your kitchen or balcony. If you have more space, then plant small vegetables too.
Cut back on meat and alcohol
Meat and alcohol are the most expensive items in stores. Buy fresh fruits and vegetables that are in season rather than eating meat. It will be healthier for you in the long term. And have a few drinks just on the weekend to cut down the unnecessary cost.
Use washable towels
Paper towels are not just expensive, they are also wasteful. Replace the paper towel with cloth napkins. You can wash them and they prove to be just as effective. You can just pop them in the laundry and use them again.
Pack lunch or snacks
When going on an outing or at work, pack your lunches rather than eating out. Packed lunches are healthy and they save a ton of money. Bringing your own snacks can also help you save on unnecessary splurging.