My #1 Tip for Lowering Your Grocery Budget

Best Tip for Lowering Your Grocery Budget

Are you a member of the Kosher on a Budget Facebook group? We’ve been talking over there about grocery budgets, which has prompted me to share with you my #1 tip for lowering your grocery bill.

Create Margin

By this, I mean to save aggressively where you can, so you have a bit of “breathing room” in your budget to afford those more costly items.

For example, where I live, the price of kosher meat doesn’t really move much. It’s $5/lb for ground beef, $10/lb and up for all other cuts. No sales, no coupons. So, instead of crying over the cost of meat, I save as much as I can on the rest of the stuff in my cart. And we eat meat less often than some others might — since eating less of something also creates margin.

That said, like you, I have very little time to chase down deals. I’m not willing or able to create margin by running around to five different stores every week. On the time-money continuum, I may not have much money, but I have even less time.

So instead, I rely heavily on my price book. If you’re not familiar with a price book, I write about them HERE. I even have a free printable and an Excel chart you can use to start your price book.

In short, a price book lets you know what your “buy now” price is on the items your family most frequently consumes.

My price book has taught me, for example, that $.25 per single roll is my “buy now” price on toilet paper. This is a relief, because I don’t have to stand in the store trying to figure out if some sale is a good deal.

It’s even easier now, because I rely on Amazon’s 15% discount for five subscriptions in a month. Do you know about that awesome program? If not, that’s another fantastic way to build that margin into your grocery budget — without having to run around to a million different stores.

If you’re not familiar with Amazon’s Subscribe & Save program, be sure to check out this video — I explain how to use Subscribe & Save to save a ton on your household and toiletry items!

When toilet paper, paper towel, laundry detergent, cleaning supplies and other “non-perishables” hit their “buy now” price on Amazon Subscribe & Save, I always stock up. That way I don’t have to worry about (a) overpaying or (b) running out of toilet paper in the middle of the night. (True story.)

So there you have it: Create margin is my #1 tip for lowering your grocery budget.

What is your #1 tip for lowering your grocery budget?


  1. My #1 tip is: Meat ONLY for dinners, never breakfast or lunch, and only 1-2 meat meals\week, or less!

    I also do my best to make 1lb of meat last for two meals. 1 lb of ground turkey can make a meatloaf for a night, or I can mix it with tons of veggies and top with mashed potatoes for a shepherd’s pie that will last two nights.

  2. #1 Tip: Plan menus a week (or preferably a month) in advance. This keeps us from impulse purchases and encourages us to find more uses for the items we buy. We buy the double-packs of tortillas from Costco, for example, and those become daily lunch sandwiches as well as fodder for taco night, tortilla pizzas, and when they are about to expire, sweet potato black bean burritos to throw into the freezer. (Hmm, any ideas for the shredded carrots in my fridge right now?)

    And to be fair, these ideas came directly from reading KOAB. All credit goes to Mara. (Maybe a little to me for paying attention…)

  3. I only shopped once a week, I always buy for a week and shabbos so I worked to make a list so if I forget something, I can’t go back until next week. So no implusive shopping except fruits and veggies that I tended to buy more then I needed but it made me to use it up and it helps me to lose weight…..

  4. This might seem ironic but my weekly shopping consists of the fruit store for basic dairy and fruits and veggies as well as the kosher supermarket. Everything is so overpriced that when I go to my local kosher store I only get what I absolutely need.

  5. I just started couponing, and use it the same way. I pay very little for paper products, shampoo, frozen veggies etc…and use the extra to put toward my kosher meats.

  6. Ilanit.Meckley says

    Hahaha – my first thought when I saw the title of this post was “eat less??” Thanks for the tips! We actually follow a paleo food philosophy so we eat more meat than in a typical diet…..but I think that our grocery bill has stayed the same, surprisingly (considering the cost of kosher meat). Even so, I’d love to lower it some more….

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