While it was fun to be one of those big coupon shoppers back in the day it just doesn’t fit into my life anymore. I used to save large sums of money left and right. I would have a stock of fruit snacks to feed the neighborhood but there came a point when I realized I wanted better for my family. I didn’t want to spend all day clipping and sorting coupons just to save money on things we didn’t need or were just plain bad for us. When couponing didn’t fit into our lives anymore I had to find other creative ways to save money for our family.
Simple ways to save money without coupons
Grow your Own Food: If you live in the city, you may be limited on what you can and cannot grow, but you still have options. Use your flower bed or a small section of your yard to grow tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, or other small vegetables. I did this even in an apartment complex, so it is possible to grow your own food even in small areas. If you live in the country or outskirts of town, go all out. You can plant anything from tomatoes and small veggies to pumpkins, corn, and apple trees. The more you grow, the less you spend at the store. The great thing about growing veggies is you can freeze them or can them so you keep your stock all year long.
Make a Monthly Meal Calendar: One thing that really helps our family is a monthly meal calendar. Not only does it help you buy only what you need from the grocery store, but it makes meal times easier. A make-your-own calendar dry erases board makes a great meal calendar. Make sure to include a leftover day once a week, so you aren’t wasting any food. This will help you save on at least one meal a week.
Change the way you cook: I love to prep meals ahead and toss them in the freezer. When I find a sale I will grab what I need to prep a few meals at once and toss into the freezer to make things easier on me later. I love when I can just toss a batch of prepped 3 bean chili into the slow cooker and let it do its thing.
I love to cook double batches of foods we enjoy and freezing half for later. This is a great way to save time and only have to clean up once while still enjoying fresh hot meals at home.
I love using the instant pot to whip up quick meals that help me feed my family even when we are in a hurry. The Instant Pot prevents me from just sending my husband to snag some pizza or burgers from the drive-through. We love instant pot fajitas.
Make simple changes to save money without coupons
Make Homemade Food: Did you know that making all your food homemade isn’t just healthier for you, it actually saves you money? Typically when you make something homemade, it is made in such a big batch that you have extra. For example, making spaghetti sauce from scratch takes a little extra time, but if you double the recipe, you have made a sauce for several different meals including lasagna, spaghetti, spaghetti squash, mostaccioli, or stuffed ravioli. If you are feeding a large family, jars of sauce for each recipe can cost upwards of $5 per recipe, but you can make and freeze the sauce for all the recipes for as little as $5.
Replace coupons with shopping apps: Use apps like Ibotta to earn money back on things like milk and vegetables while you are shopping. When checking for the best deals I use Swagbucks to get paid for running searches.
Shop a bit differently: Buying in bulk allows me to save a lot of money feeding a large family. There are a few staples I keep in the house at all times to save money on food. Oats, flour, sugar, and dried beans all last ages in well-sealed containers and are great for helping you make a meal out of the food in your pantry.