Guest post: Mo Mummy Mo Monies – how to reduce your family food shop

woman putting red apple on green shopping basket
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Wife, and mum of 3, Hayley in Suffolk, is seriously trying to reduce their families’ food shop; especially before the next school term begins and packed lunches are needed.

They are vegan and despite the absence of meat and dairy, it can feel expensive with some products pricier than their meat/dairy counterparts. Hayley’s weekly food shop is approximately £55; the UK national average per household IS £58 so in comparison they are not doing badly. However, Hayley feels like they spend all their money on food and wants to be able to save; the struggle is real, right?

I agreed to have a look through Hayley’s weekly food spend and see if I could help. Now, it’s no secret that I love a yellow sticker – the foods reduced when nearing their best before, use by date, and I know that they are not exempt in Suffolk; I’ve stopped at many a supermarket enroute to Latitude #bargainbeers. I do however appreciate that it can be difficult to commit the time to sourcing reduced foods so the following tips are without yellow stickers in mind, ok at least not at the forefront of my mind ha!

  1. Chop not Shop

70p carrot batons were on Hayley’s shopping list; convenience does not come for free!

Just by glancing on a major supermarket’s website I can see that carrot batons retail at £2.33/kg, double that of their bag of organic carrots at £1.16/kg.

Not only are they more expensive but pre washed, pre cut veg goes off far quicker.

35p may seem a small price to pay for diced carrots and swedes yet it is still 70p/kg in comparison to 50p for a whole swede, and you’ve already bought the carrots!

Chips 99p and white potatoes at £1.15; excuse my ignorance but aren’t chips potatoes?

With a family of 5 you can set up a wash, chop, pack conveyor belt; you’ll have more food, money, family time and it encourages children’s relationship with food.

  1. Creation not Replication

Baby Potatoes, white potatoes, chips, crisps; all spuds. As well as making your own chips, crisps which can often be fresher and healthier; ask yourself, do you really need 2 different varieties of spuds in 1 week?

The pitta breads, they could also be used to substitute the chilli tortilla chips that you bought. Talking of the bakery, I spotted square cut bread, garlic bread, pitta bread, bread rolls; 4 varieties of bread in 7 days.

I’m guessing that the bread rolls were for the veggie burgers so why not use the pitta’s or make them into club sandwiches with sliced bread. The dairy free sunflower spread, spread that on pitta with chopped garlic; toasted and delicious garlic bread.

Instead of buying hummus why not use the tinned of chickpeas that you bought to make your own. I noticed a tomato and mushroom pasta sauce…I also noticed that you bought fresh tomatoes and mushrooms; that’s your pasta sauce!

  1. It’s Time to Cut Loose the Singular Use

Rice packs may seem convenient when cooking for a large number but again the disparity in price is huge.

25p a pack may be tempting, yet what gets overlooked is that equates to £2.09/kg whereas a pack of easy cook long grain at the same supermarket is £1.20/kg

It’ll go a lot further with a family of 5 and any leftovers will make a delicious rice salad, vegetable fried rice, porridge; as long as properly cooled it can even be frozen.

  1. Outsource your Resource

Olio is a mobile food sharing app which reduces food waste by creating a platform for individuals and companies to freely distribute surplus food.

Not only is it operational in Suffolk but having scrolled through I saw listed items to rival any free from aisle; Gram flour, Couscous, Bulgar wheat, Quinoa, Rice.

Rival, it’s better than any free from aisle, because what its free from is cost!

Laura

This guest blog post was written by Laura also known as Reduction Raider 1 or Yellow Sticker Gal. For more tips on eating well for less you can subscribe to Laura’s dedicated blog and follow her on Instagram and Facebook. Thank you to Laura for sharing your tips and also to Hayley for providing the inspiration for this post.

Love, Thrifty Mumma X

If you enjoyed reading this post then you might like to take a look at these too:

How to have a family and save money

10 things I no longer spend (as much) money on

10 thrifty ways to entertain your baby for free

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