What Not To Buy With a Frugal Grocery Budget

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.Several years ago on a hot summer day in Idaho I wanted to buy a 2 liter bottle of root beer to pour over glasses of ice as a treat for my family.  I went into the store with exactly enough money in my pocket for 1 gallon of milk and 1 bottle of soda. It really was the last of my grocery money for that month and I was proud of myself for having the 59 cents for the treat. When I got to the milk cooler I realized that the price of milk had suddenly gone up by 10 cents. One measly dime. For most people this would not have made a difference, but for me it meant I had to do without the cold frosty root beer. I knew we needed the milk and knew we did not need soda, so I just purchased the milk.

For someone suddenly faced with the need to  slash a grocery budget this can be unknown territory. I mean you have always bought treats, dessert, drinks (other than milk) and convenience foods right?

Well I am sad to say, it has to stop. Yup I said it. When times get tough enough for a need to tighten the grocery budget  we have to stick to the essentials.

I think the first items I would suggest doing with out would be ready made desserts and sugary drinks. They do not add any nutrition to our diets and suck up a lot of money.

Secondly we should remove any other nonessential drinks like coffee and tea. (I could feel some peoples blood pressure rise when typing that.) I know those items are practically sacred in some folks homes but they are expensive and if you need to cut the budget to get by then you need to let these go.

Finally the conveniences you are used to having need to be replaced with homemade dishes. Every one of us has our favorites but the cost difference between store bought and home made is astronomical. I cringe to think about how much money I spent on frozen lasagna and bagged salad. I could afford it at the time and can afford it now. Thankfully now I am a little bit wiser.

I won’t presume to give you a specific list of what to eliminate from your personal grocery budget. I do however presume that this post will give you something to think about next time you compose a shopping list.

This post is part of 31 day series.

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