Top Tips for Shopping on a budget

If you have less money to spend on food, it can seem harder to shop for a healthy and balanced diet. You may be tempted to pick up everything that is on special offer but there are other ways to reduce your grocery bill and eat healthily.

  1. Avoid buying on impulse. Plan your meals a few days ahead, make a list before you go shopping and stick to it. This will also stop you buying too much.
  2. Look up and down the shelves to find cheaper products when you go to the supermarket. Shelves at eye level usually contain the more expensive items.
  3. Swap branded products for the supermarket’s own brand.
  4. Buy fruit and vegetables that are in season. On the whole, fruit and vegetables that are grown in the UK are cheaper than imported produce.
  5. Buy frozen and tinned fruit and vegetables as well. They cost less than the fresh. All types of fruit and vegetables, whether fresh, chilled, frozen, canned, bottled or dried, count towards the recommended five daily portions.
  6. Look out for two-for-one offers on foods that keep, such as pasta, rice, cereals (choose wholegrain options as they contain more fibre) and tins of pulses or tomatoes.
  7. Check sell-by dates. Supermarkets reduce prices on products that are close to their sell-by date. This can be a great way of picking up bargains, but before you fill your trolley, be sure that you will eat or cook everything you buy before it goes off.
  8. If you shop online, use a supermarket comparison website to see which supermarkets offer the best prices for the products you want to buy.
  9. Cut down on ready meals, especially if you are feeding two or more people. Ready meals are often high in salt, sugar or fat. Making your own lasagne or shepherd’s pie is not only healthier, but works out much cheaper.
  10. Buy cheaper cuts of meat, such as shoulder of lamb instead of leg of lamb, or chicken thighs and drumsticks instead of breasts.