If you are a Sarah’s Cucina Bella fan on Facebook, you know that I was ridiculously excited about my grocery store purchases earlier this week. That photo above is what I purchased. And I spent (drum roll please!) $52.47.
Here’s what I got:
- 6 boxes of cereal (great for snacks and early morning breakfasts)
- 8 boxes of pasta
- 1 lb shrimp
- 2 packages of ground turkey (1 1/4 lbs each)
- 1 four pack of turkey burgers
- 2 boxes of brownie mix (yes, I use boxes. Sometimes.)
- 1 quart of half and half
- 1 sour cream
- 3 boxes of taco shells
- 1 package of taco seasoning (it was free — gave that away. I prefer homemade taco seasoning)
- 1 dozen cage-free eggs
- 3 cans kid-friendly pastas (good for rushed lunches … once in a blue moon)
- 2 cans of soup
- 1 jar peanut butter (gave this away after checking the ingredients, but it was only $0.99 with purchase)
- 1 loaf bread
- 2 salad dressings
- 1 mayo
- 1 box bakery brownies, from the day-old rack
When I told my friend, Angel, about this, her first question was HOW?!?
In a word: coupons. I used them. A lot them. First, I checked the flier for the grocery store, and then I went through coupons that I went to. It took me about an hour to match them up and decide what to buy. The grocery store that I shop at automatically doubles coupons that are $0.99 and less, so many of my coupons were doubled.
The cereal was a steal — three of the boxes cost me $1.50 total. Then, the pasta was on sale for $0.77 each. I noticed that the Quick Cook Penne had $0.50 off coupons on them, so I bought all that I could find with the coupon — which got doubled (as in, I made $0.23 for each box I bought). The taco shells, which I like to have in the house, had a coupon for free taco seasoning on it — and I used it, even though I don’t actually use packaged taco seasoning. I have family that does, so that was perfect to gift to them along with the $0.99 peanut butter.
All in all, I saved $47.61 on the shopping trip — almost 50%! So, yes, I was really, really excited. We have a good store of nonperishables building in the basement which is sure to come in handy during the school year.
Of course, I am a coupon novice. But reading Eating Well on $1 A Day really inspired me. If the writer could save that much on food, why not me too? There’s no reason why I can’t — and without compromising my standards for the food we eat.
Yes, I bought one thing that I normally wouldn’t: canned kid-friendly pastas. But as a once in a while when I don’t have time to prepare lunch thing? No biggie. My kids will probably love them. As for veggies and fruit, since it’s still summertime, we get ours from the farmers’ market and our CSA.
Do you use coupons? What’s the most you’ve saved?
This Week’s Tips, Tricks and Deals
- Get Samples! Go to the P&G website and click on brandSAMPLER to get all sorts of coupons and samples by mail.
- Coupon sites: Check out Smart Source and Red Plum for online coupons to print. Also, get them from your Sunday papers.
Have a wonderful weekend!
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. Her latest cookbook is The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook, published by Rockridge Press, which focuses on quick, easy, from-scratch cooking for busy people. A single mother to two kids in middle school, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.