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My One Trick for Saving Money at the Grocery Store - The Financial Diet

My One Trick for Saving Money at the Grocery Store - The Financial Diet
From The Kitchn - July 17, 2017

Welcome to a column from The Financial Diet, one of our very favorite sites, dedicated to money and everything it touches. One of the best ways to take charge of your financial life is through food and cooking. This column from TFD founders Chelsea Fagan and Lauren Ver Hage will help you be better with money, thanks to the kitchen. A version of this post originally appeared on The Financial Diet.

I have been trying to get better about how I grocery shop for a while now, and although I know the eventual solution will probably be "order a lot of my stuff online and make store trips only occasionally," for some reason I am just not doing it yet. The truth is, because I work at home a lot, going to the store is often a good opportunity for me to get out of the house and have something to do. Yes, I walk the pup, but that is only so much entertainment and it's good to have something productive to tack onto my trips.

So to that end, I hit the grocery store approximately twice a week, usually averaging 120 bucks in groceries between the two trips. Perhaps this is a lot, but there are two of us (at least several days a week), and one of us is a strapping young lad who goes through a lot of food. But I started to notice that even though I have gotten pretty good about always making a list before any tripand checking it with Marc to see if he has anything to add or take offI was still spending more than I wanted, and coming home with a lot of things that I did not need.

Being that I live in a big city, and therefore have to transport my hauls in bags and on foot, I am already more limited than some in terms of how much excess crap I can get at the store. But often the ratios of things themselveshealthy to unhealthy, staple to unnecessarywere bad, even when I was forced to carry it all by hand. So I started doing something that has since become an essential component of my grocery trips and has proven to save me ample money and empty calories: I bring a large bag that is specifically for fruits and veggies, and I cannot get anything else until that bag is full.

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