Every Mums nightmare the dreaded shopping list, the weekly shop, the planning of food, along with a very very limited budget, however hard I try no matter how hard I plan, it is always a draining unenjoyable task, I have tried daily shopping, going to each shop locally sourcing out the best cheapest places for each individual thing, I have tried weekly shopping physically, I have tried every supermarket online, I have tried every which way, it never really gets any easier and it certainly never gets cheaper.
It gets very boring shopping for my family of five, I don’t have the solution, but I can tell you a few of my best tips, Be strict, don’t take the children with you (unless you have to)only buy what you need and have run out of, plan meals from what you already need to use up, plan a weekly menu and stick to it, and try to stick to an amount of money to spend and pay with cash (unless online)so that you are not tempted to overspend try and make as much from scratch as possible, buy items that you regularly need and use in as big a size as possible such as pasta and toilet roll, and large bags of raisins and sultanas rather than small boxes don’t be tempted by offers of things you won’t use just because they are on offer, don’t be afraid to buy Value Saver items they are ok (from experience of trying them all Sainsburys value range is probably the best) do buy tinned or frozen vegetables and fruit they have just as good nutritional value and are so much cheaper I also buy frozen fish and some frozen meats or buy meat on offer such as 3 for 10 pounds and freeze them. Fruit for the children is always my main priority and I like to have as many fruits on offer as possible. I only have water or milk on offer to drink(which is the healthiest) and tea and coffee for my husband and I. I make lots of slow cooker casseroles, meat or fish and vegetable meals, and pasta or rice dishes, we make yoghurt when we can or buy Large pots of yoghurt and dish it out.
My biggest battle with the children is snacks, and sweet treats in the past I have spent lots of money on child friendly looking snacks,things in animal shapes character packaging etc, I have learnt now the error of my ways, instead I make the food I give the children child friendly myself, cutting out sandwiches with cutters etc, making our own snacks wherever possible such as homemade biscuits and flap jack, cutting down snacking, it’s not a good habit and snacking between meals did not exist anyway when I was young.
This week I am going to try Aldi for the first time, hope I can spend even less, will let you know how I get on.