How To Budget For Food
Everyone eats, so it's a good idea to know how to budget for food. Spending money on food is a necessity, but it doesn't need to break the food budget. By planning meals before grocery shopping, it's possible to eat well without spending too much. Know how to budget for food and how much you can spend then stick to that dollar amount.
- Plan your meals to stay on budget. Know ahead of time what foods you need to buy for the week. When you budget for food, consider the number of people you'll be feeding, their food preferences, and how much everyone eats. When you know what you want to eat at meals, you can make a list of the items needed to prepare those meals. Choose cuts of meat that can be used for several meals, such as a roast that can be used for one meal and the leftovers can used for one or more additional meals.
- Shop the sales to budget for food. Study the weekly grocery store sales fliers and buy what is on sale each week. If possible, stock up on items that are deeply discounted to wisely budget for food. Buy fresh vegetables and fruit in season when it is cheapest. Freeze extra food for future use.
- Use coupons. Look online or in the food section of the newspaper for manufacturer's coupons. Some coupons are even available in the aisles of grocery stores next to the food. These cents and dollars off can make a real difference when you need to budget for food.
- Stick to your list. You make a list for a reason—-to save money. Avoid impulse buying by simply buying items on your grocery list. If possible, shop without children if they want foods that are not in your food budget.
- Use a calculator when budgeting for food. Tally each item as you place it in the shopping cart to budget for food. Make wise decisions and remove items that go over the food budget.