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How to Radically Lower Your Grocery Budget

Do you want radically lower your grocery budget but the idea of shopping only sales and using coupons doesn’t sit right with you? Well, you’re in luck.

I’ve been able to substantially lower my grocery budget without touching a coupon or glancing at a sales flier. That’s because really saving money on groceries comes down to three basic principles.

If you follow these I guarantee you’ll see dramatic savings.

Ready to get started?

Make a Meal Plan

Let’s start by talking about what a meal plan isn’t. A meal plan is not an elaborately laid out calendar style form that details every single thing you’ll be eating over the next month. It doesn’t have to be fancy or detailed. (Unless you want it to be.)

All a meal plan is a list of meals you plan on making or eating over the next week or so. A meal plan is simple, but flexible and is a tool that allows you to plan ahead instead of having to run through a drive through for dinner.

Here’s a dinner meal plan sample:

  • Monday – Grilled Chicken, green beans
  • Tuesday – Crockpot Roast Beef, carrots, potatoes,
  • Wednesday – Lasagna
  • Thursday – Tacos
  • Friday – Leftovers

When you take the time to write out a simple meal plan like this you can take a quick glance and know what you need to layout for the next day. It’s also flexible. Just because you wrote down a certain meal for a certain day of the week doesn’t mean you can’t switch it.

When you take ten minutes out of your week to make a meal plan based upon the food you already have in your house you’ll save money.

Too many people shy away from meal plans thinking they need to be elaborate. That’s not true. In my experience the simpler the better.

Use What You Have

I don’t know why this is hard to do for so many people – but it is. Look in your pantry. How much food is in there? There’s a lot in mine but for some reason I’ll feel like “there’s nothing to eat.”

Before you go grocery shopping to top off an already full pantry start using what you have.

Get creative with your meals and record them on your meal plan. This will help you take less frequent trips to the grocery store.

Don’t Step Into a Store Without a List

To really save money on food you need to shop with a list.

Before you head to the store take inventory of what you already have, come up with some meal ideas, and then create your list.

When you go to the store only buy from the list. This will curb your impulse purchases and ensure that you’re only purchasing items that will actually get used up.


These three strategies can help you radically lower your grocery budget. These are all quick and simple things that you can do that will have a huge impact! And best of all – no coupons required.



  1. Thanks for including meal plans! (though ours is actually handwritten on a calendar on the fridge so we can see what’s for supper)

    I don’t think you need coupons to save, but I do make sure to at least check the flyer when I walk in the store. If something’s on a big sale I can swap a meal on my meal plan or stock up.

  2. Something I’m trying right now is to have a target $$ value for a meal. Then I know whether a meal is cheap enough to meet my grocery budget. I have expensive tastes.

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