Do You Have an IPhone? Try “Best Value”, a .99 cent app. It will “do the math” for you when comparing prices in pounds, ounces, etc. (Thank you, Everyday Cheapskate Email Newsletter, 8/25/10)
Buy Beans by the Bag: One pound of dry beans is usually much cheaper than canned beans. Soaking and cooking of dry beans is easy, and it motivates you to find new family recipes. If you’ve never tried black bean brownies, you’ve got to – they’re awesome! The US Dry Bean Council has an excellent website which will show you how to prepare and cook with beans. Check out the “Tips and Tricks” page, as well as the quick and healthy recipes: http://www.usdrybeans.com/recipes/ Shop From Home First! What you have in your home pantry is money in the bank. You spent money on it, and using it will save you money this week. If you’re looking at a seemingly odd assortment of ingredients, type them into Allrecipies.com’s ingredient search. You’ll find recipes that will make the best use of what you have. Create a menu and grocery list with this week’s grocery deals which complete the recipes.
Skip an Emergency Trip to the Store – Find and Substitution at Home! A quick trip into the grocery store can become a budget nightmare. Instead of spending the time and the money, look to “Cooking For Engineers” for help. They have a list of reasonable ingredient substitutions: http://www.cookingforengineers.com/article/52/Ingredient-Substitutions
Get More Grocery Coupons – For Free: Collect coupon inserts from family and friends. Start a coupon trading box at church or daycare. Take a few minutes and write or call your favorite manufacturers (sign up for their email/postal mail newsletters). Print coupons from home – and use the backside of paper you’d otherwise toss. Recruit a friend or two to join you in coupon use, trade amongst yourselves. Start a coupon group or playdate. Visit Walmart and Sam’s Club websites for free samples, which usually arrive with coupons.
Make new Friends, Trade Coupons Online: There are communities of coupon traders ready and friendly – they’ll help you learn the way to more coupon savings! You can join “coupon trains”, where an envelope of coupons makes its way through a list of traders – or trade for the specific coupons you need. If trading is not an option for you, there is still a whole lot you can learn about couponing from these sites.