A Simple Way to Cut Costs

Jan and I recently had a long talk about the undeniable increase in costs that we have seen in our day-to-day lives. We lamented about how expensive it is to feed our families right now and shared ideas about ways we have started to cut costs. Today I want to share a simple way to cut costs. My two go-to tricks are meal planning and Aldi grocery store. This week we will take a look at my meal planning tips.

A simple way to cut costs is to meal plan. This is something that I have done for years. To be honest, some weeks are better than others. No one is perfect!! I totally cave and grab carry out on the way home more times than I like. But, meal planning has certainly helped me minimize those days. Here are the steps I currently use to meal plan.

  • Take a sheet of paper and list out the dates for the entire month.
  • Look at your calendar. Are there any special events that mean eating out? Are there days where you are busy and you know you’ll be ordering take out? Write those down beside the date. For example, we always eat a special take out dinner on Valentine’s Day. Beside 2/14 I write, “Order out.”
  • Now, look at what is left and think about different groupings of meals that your family normally eats. For instance, in my house we tend to eat something Mexican, a crockpot soup, something quick in the air fryer, a comfort meal, and pizza every week. Using those categories, I map out my month.
  • For example, every Friday is pizza night, so on my list I write the word pizza beside each of the dates that is a Friday. Thursdays are busy after school so I add in simple crock pot meals on the dates that fall on Thursdays. Mondays we are all home so I might add in something more cumbersome such as meatloaf and mashed potatoes, or lasagna.

Make sense? So once I have my list, I put a star next to the dates that I go shopping. For me, it is typically Wednesday. So when I am making my grocery list, I look at what is on my meal plan from Wed. to Wed. and shop accordingly.

In sum, using this meal plan helps me save a TON of money. When I shop I have a plan. And we eat out less because I know what I’m making each day. Next week, we are going to look at how Aldi grocery store saves me hundreds each month. What are some ways you are cutting costs this year? Share with me in the comments.

4 thoughts on “A Simple Way to Cut Costs

  1. […] at your budget. If you budget $300 a month to eat out, could you get creative and eat at home this month? Then you can use that earmarked eating out money to pay for gas. Frozen pizza […]

  2. […] we are going to talk about inexpensive ways to update your wardrobe for Spring. It is that weird in-between time that is chilly in the morning […]

  3. […] Meal plan. You have heard me sing this song many times in the last month, but it is true. When you have a plan, you are much less likely to eat out. But let’s take it one step further. Make it FUN!! On taco night, put some tortilla chips in a basket and pair it with a bowl of homemade salsa. Let everyone choose their own toppings for homemade pizza, make homemade ice cream for dessert…the options are endless. When you add a simple layer of fun to your meals at home, it can be even better than going to a restaurant. […]

  4. […] we continue on in our budgeting, frugal living, minimalist series, we are going to take a close look at the one simple ingredient for budget meals. […]

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: