How I Saved Week 14: Pantry Use-up Challenge

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how to save money on groceries

Each week I share how I saved money, hoping that some of these frugal ideas could be helpful to you.

Check out the Resources Page for tons of other money saving resources!

If you’ve read other How I Saved posts, feel free to skip down to the deals.

If you’re new, here’s a little background about why I share my savings…

You’d be surprised how much money you can save when you really put your mind to it. It’s the accumulation of lots of small choices and habits that dictate the path your finances take.

The money that you save might seem meaningless in small amounts, but it truly adds up. It leaves more money in your bank account that you can use to pay off debt, save for the future, or do more of what you enjoy.

I absolutely love saving money and wanted to start sharing how I save each week. Not to show off, but to hopefully demonstrate different ways to save and maybe inspire you to want to do the same.

I strive to save on groceries, eating out, clothes, gifts, gasoline, etc. You name it, and I want to save money on it.

My main motivation for saving money is to pay off our mortgage in the next 2-3 years. Every dollar saved is in honor of that goal.

We’ve paid off thousands of dollars in debt over the past couple years. Wouldn’t it feel so awesome to be completely debt free? And get to keep most of your paycheck instead of immediately sending it away to pay bills? I think so.

I thought I’d share how much I save each week by using my favorite savings formula: combining sales and coupons. Or whatever other ways I come up with to be frugal. Hopefully some of these methods can be applied to your life.

You can get caught up and read the rest of the How I Saved posts here.

Related: Flat out broke? Try these 5 tips.

Here are my savings for Week 14 – April 2-8

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Grocery Savings:

This is the easiest way to cut back on spending and save money. Each week, plan your shopping trip(s) based on what’s on sale. Then combine those sales with matching coupons to get the most bang for your buck. I always aim for at least 50% savings.

Related: Use one of these 5 easy meal planning strategies to make the most of your grocery budget.

I use coupon matchup sites to plan my deals. My favorites are Kroger Krazy, Meijer Madness, and Bargains to Bounty. They make it so easy by spelling out exactly what the sale items are, and which coupons to use. Such a couponing time saver!

The absolute best place to print coupons is It’s where I get all my printable coupons.

Here are the deals!

coupon matchups

This month I’m planning to do a freezer and pantry use-up. We have quite a bit of food on hand, since I always stock up on things when they’re at their rock bottom price. So I won’t need to buy too many items for dinners.

To that end, I’m setting an ambitious goal for April of spending $150 or less on groceries. For the entire month.

I did this last April and was able to spend only $125! Since our monthly grocery average is between $200-250, I saved at least $100 by using what I already have.

Even if you don’t have a fully stocked freezer and pantry, it’s great to plan your meals around what you do have. Especially if you have a week or a month where you want to save extra money.

I only shopped at Aldi this week, partly because Meijer and Kroger didn’t have any impressive deals. But also because it’s just so easy to save money at Aldi.

Aldi Shopping Trip:

Aldi is one of the most effortless ways to save money on groceries. You’re going to save 20-50% on most  items there, compared to other stores. You don’t have to wait for sales at Aldi. Some items are a little cheaper during certain seasons, but everything is always affordable.

I buy many staple items there, or whatever else I need/want that I can’t get cheaper elsewhere. For the purpose of these How I Saved posts, I’m going to estimate a 30% savings (and I think that’s being conservative). I am saving money by shopping at Aldi, so it totally counts.

My Aldi trip this week included staples like peanut butter, applesauce, turkey lunchmeat, bread, and napkins. I also bought things like frozen ravioli and turkey meatballs for dinners, since I didn’t already have them in the freezer.

Because my favorite Aldi had just undergone a gorgeous renovation, their sales flyer included a $5 off $30 coupon. That made it even easier to save money! I wish they offered that every week hehe.

Related: Here are the 70 best things to buy at Aldi.

Related: Want some basic grocery savings ideas? Here are 5 ways to save money without using coupons.

Amount Spent: $25.98

Amount Saved (30% savings + $5 coupon): $12.79

I use a collapsible shopping basket like this one for my Aldi shopping.

how to save money on groceries

Gasoline Savings:

I didn’t need gas this week, thankfully!

Grand Total Savings for Week 14: $12.79

Total Saved Year-to-Date: $1193.09

You can read the rest of the How I Saved posts here.

Don’t forget to check out the Resources Page for tons of other money saving resources!

What are your tricks for saving money? How much did you save this week?

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