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Published on May 07, 2014

Outsmart the Grocery Store

Taking time to prepare before you hit the aisles can save you time and money.

We’re all looking for ways to feed our families healthy meals without breaking the bank. Try these five tried-and-true ways to get in and get out without busting your budget.

  1. Don’t feel the need to fill up your cart. Shopping cart sizes are growing because testing shows larger carts encourage customers to buy more. Make it a conscious effort to not fill up your cart or grab a basket instead if you only need a few items.
  2. Start in the middle of the store. Grocers stock produce at the front of the store because bright colors can put you in a good mood and inspire you to buy more. Stick to your budget – and pre-determined list – by starting in the middle where you’ll be surrounded by less vibrant boxed and canned items.
  3. Buy larger cuts of meat and ask the butcher to trim it for you. One example is to buy a very large roast and ask for the bone to be removed for soup, ask for half of the roast to be run through the grinder and then cut the remaining meat into a pot roast. One supermarket butcher says you can save about 30 percent compared to buying each item pre-cut.
  4. Ask store employees about complimentary add-ons. Don’t be afraid to ask. At some stores, the butcher will tenderize meat for you, the baker will slice a loaf of bread and the florist will usually provide free greenery to go with loose flowers.
  5. Do the math before buying in bulk. While some items are a smart buy when you go bulk, produce items are usually cheaper per pound than buying multi-packs. Check prices and do a little math to figure out if the bulk option is a good deal or not.

If you’re looking for more ways to save at the grocery store, Reader’s Digest has an expansive list of grocery store tips and tricks. Have a great way to save on groceries we didn’t list? Share it in the comments!

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