Grocery shopping on a budget? Let me show you the details of my $225 a month grocery shopping trips and teach what I do to save money and live well on a low grocery budget with my family of six!
There are affiliate links in this post – please read my full disclosure policy.
Some of you have wondered where I get my printable coupons. Here are the main coupon sites that I use: Coupons.com, Smart Source, Red Plum, Ibotta, Fetch Rewards (use code GEOEG at sign-up for $2.00 in points!) and Checkout 51. Manufacturer websites and Facebook pages are also great sources.
All of you long time readers know that up until about a year ago, I posted What I Spent & Saved posts like this weekly. And while I don’t plan on having them become a regular feature again, I had such a good week grocery shopping with coupons that I just couldn’t help but share it with you! I realize though that only a very small percent of you all actually shop at the same two grocery store that I do (Giant, which also goes by Martins or Stop and Shop, and ShopRite). However, I still think you can benefit from some of the tips and things that I share and hopefully can get some ideas and inspiration for saving more on your own grocery bill.
And if you’ve ever been curious what a real-life couponer’s shopping trip looks like, here’s your chance to get a look. 🙂
A FEW DETAILS ABOUT USING COUPONS and HOW I SHOP:
* I live in an area where most grocery stores fully double all coupons up to $1.00. So anything $.99 or above will double, which is why the $0.75 coupons you see below note that they doubled to $1.50. This definitely helps me get better deals, although I have to say that even before we moved here to Philadelphia and I shopped at stores that didn’t fully double, I still often got very similar deals. So getting great deals still is possible even without fully doubled coupons!
* The Load to Card coupons that you see mentioned below can be found on the grocery store’s website when you create an account with your store card. I think most major grocery stores have this option anymore and it’s a great way to save a little extra. I typically just go into my account and clip all the coupons, that way if I happen to buy something that I hadn’t planned on buying and it had a Load to Card coupon available, I’ll get the savings. And that has happened quite a few times!
* The best way to maximize your savings is to combine sales with coupons and to combine multiple coupons on the same product. But I want to be clear- you can only use one manufacturer coupon per item. In other words, say you have two printable coupons for Butterball ground turkey, you can only use one. (You can easily tell if it’s a manufacturer’s coupon by looking at the top of the coupon for that wording. Almost all coupons are manufacturer coupons.)
* Under no circumstances is it legal to photocopy a coupon. For printable coupons, most manufacturer’s let you print two coupons per computer and then your limit will be capped.
* Coupon availability changes all the time, so the links that I share below will soon be out of date and not take you to the exact coupon that I linked too. I’m sorry about that, but it’s just how coupons work!
Okay, so now that we got those details covered, let’s get down to the specifics of this week’s shopping!
I realize that all the numbers below can get kind of confusing. I try to break it down in a way that is easy to understand, but I know that it’s still kind of hard to follow sometimes. So if you have questions, please feel free to ask in the comments!
Basically, though, I got ALL the groceries that you see below for just $14.67 total, after all coupons and savings! Less than $15, you all! This is why I feel like it’s worth using coupons. No, not all weeks are this amazing, but many are. And there is no other way that we’d be able to eat as well as what we do and keep our grocery budget this low.
Updated 8/24- actually I only spent $10.67 because today I got notifications from Saving Star (Saving Star closed in 2020) that I received $4 for buying the Butterball turkey. I had totally forgotten about that offer when I bought these, but it sure made the deal even sweeter!
GROCERY SHOPPING ON A BUDGET- MY COUPON SHOPPING TRIP
Total Spent: $94.04
Total Saved with Coupons: $51.75
Total Saved with Sales: $32.55
Total Saved: $84.30 + an additional $57.50 in gas savings
Saved with Coupons: $19.75
Saved with Sales: $28.87 + an additional $57.50 in gas savings
These Giant deals will be good through 8/24/17, so if you shop before that, you should be able to these same deals yourself.
Giant has a gas rewards program that is really awesome. Basically, each week they have roughly 12 to 24 items that are part of the gas deals and when you purchase a certain amount of these items (you can mix and match them), you can earn savings on gas purchased at Giant gas stations. This week, those gas reward helped save me a lot of money and get some amazing deals!
My favorite deal at Giant this week was by far the string cheese. The Marvel and Paw Patrol string cheese and Tom’s of Maine were part of the gas rewards deals and when you bought 4 of any of these, you saved $10.00 in gas. So after all coupons and gas savings, I paid just $0.12/pack for the string cheese and $1.00 for the Tom’s of Maine toothpaste. That’s some crazy cheap cheese! I had to laugh when the cashier was ringing me up and asked in a very serious voice, “So, you all like string cheese, I guess?” I told her that we sure do, but then explained the great deal and she was rather amazed and totally understood why I bought so much! We’ll probably eat most of it like it is, but I may end up shredding some of it too when I make homemade pizza and that sort of thing. Thankfully, string cheese doesn’t go bad very quickly!
The Beechnut organic baby food was also a gas rewards deal where you got $7.50 in gas savings when you bought six. I had a $1 off 5 coupon that I used, which turned these into a $0.16 money maker- the only reason I actually bought them!
The Horizon Organic Snack Trays were a $2 money maker after all coupons. The Chicken of the Sea tuna was just $0.29 each after the Checkout 51 savings. I paid $1.50 for the Treasure Cave feta cheese after all coupons, the Old El Paso burrito shells were free and the Finish dishwasher tablets were $9.99- not the best price ever but we were almost totally out and this price still beat anything I could find on Amazon!
- 2 Horizon Organic Good & Go Snack Tray $1.00 each
– used $1/2 Horizon Good & Go printable
– used $1/2 Horizon Giant Load to Card offer
– submitted for (2) $1.00 Ibotta Horizon offers
- 6 Chicken of the Sea Chunk Light Tuna $0.79 each
– submitted for (2) $1.50/3 Checkout 51 offer
- Treasure Cave Feta Cheese $2.99
– used $0.50 Treasure Cave printable coupon (doubled to $1.00)
– used a $0.50 Treasure Cave Giant Load to Card offer
- 12 Marvel “Spiderman” String Cheese $2.99 each
– used (2) $0.75 Marvel printable coupons (doubled to $1.50 each)
– used (2) $1.00 Marvel coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
– used $0.75 Marvel Giant Load to Card offer
- 7 Paw Patrol String Cheese $2.99 each
– used $0.75 Paw Patrol printable coupon (doubled to $1.50)
- Tom’s of Maine Luminous White toothpaste $3.50
- Old El Paso Burrito Shells $0.99
– used $0.50 Old El Paso printable coupon (doubled to $1.00)
- 6 Beechnut Organic Baby Food $1.39 each
– used $1/5 Beechnut coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
- Finish Powerball Tablets $11.99
– used $2.00 Finish coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
- $50.00 in gas reward savings for purchasing the Marvel, Paw Patrol and Tom’s of Maine products
- $7.50 in gas reward savings for purchasing the Beechnut baby food
Saved with Coupons: $32.00
Saved with Sales: $3.68
These ShopRite deals will be good through 8/26/17, so if you shop before that, you should be able to these same deals yourself.
ShopRite was a new store for me when we moved to Philly, and while it’s taken me a bit to get used to shopping there, I’m learning to really like their store!
I was super excited to get ground turkey for really cheap! I used a rain check for four of the packs, so between that savings and all my coupons, I paid just $0.99/lb. for the 7 lbs. of ground turkey! Since meat can be one of the biggest grocery expenses, I’m always really grateful when I get can get a great deal and save like this.
While we aren’t big fans of plain ground turkey, I’ve found that if I mix it half and half with ground beef, we don’t mind the taste at all. And actually, I thought this Butterball ground turkey tasted better than most other brands that we’ve tried, so I actually may end up using it as a substitute for ground beef in some of our favorite dishes like this Crockpot Tamale Pie.
The Kidfresh Chicken Nuggets cost me $0.55 after coupons. While these are geared for kids, you might remember that our whole family actually loves them and when I can find them cheap like this, I love to use them for a quick dinner on busy evenings!
I love Food Should Taste Good chips and loved that I could get 2 bags totally free this week after coupons and sales. The Enjoy Life cookies and Dannon Greek Yogurt were free as well, and while they are something that I wouldn’t typically buy, for free I’m more than happy to take them home! The Nutella was another freebie that my husband was excited about. I’m not a fan of it, but he loves it!
The Colgate toothpaste was another free item and the Finesse hair spray was $0.25 after coupon savings.
And the milk, well, it was no great price- we simply need it! And those of you that have cheap milk prices can look at what I paid and feel grateful for your savings. 🙂 I always kind of inwardly gasp when I hear about people paying $2 a gallon for milk. I can’t imagine those prices!
- 3 Butterball Ground Turkey $3.49 each
– used (3) $0.75 Butterball Ground Turkey printable coupons (doubled to $1.50 each)
– submitted for (3) $1.00 Ibotta Butterball offers
- 4 Butterball Ground Turkey $1.99 each (bought with rain check)
– used (4) $0.75 Butterball Ground Turkey printable coupons (doubled to $1.50 each)
– submitted for $4/$16 Saving Star Butterball offer
- Kidfresh Chicken Nuggets $2.55
– submitted for $1.00 Ibotta Kidfresh offer
– submitted for $1.00 Checkout 51 Kidfresh offer
- 2 Food Should Taste Good $1.99 each
– used $0.75 Food Should Taste Good coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts (doubled to $1.50)
– used $1.00 Food Should Taste Good printable coupon
– used $1.00 Food Should Taste Good Shoprite Load to Card coupon
– submitted for $1.00 Food Should Taste Good Saving Star offer
- Enjoy Life Chocolate Chip Cookies $3.69
– used $3.00 Enjoy Life printable coupon from the Enjoy Life website
– submitted for $1.00 Ibotta Enjoy Life offer
- Nutella Hazelnut Spread $2.99
– used $1.50 Nutella coupon from Sunday newspaper coupon inserts
– used $1.50 Nutella Shoprite Load to Card coupon
- Finesse Hair Spray $1.99
– used $1.00 Finesse ShopRite Load to Card coupon
– submitted for $0.75 Ibotta Finesse offer
- Colgate Total Clean in Between toothpaste $2.49
– used $0.75 Colgate Clean in Between printable coupon (doubled to $1.50)
– used $1.00 Colgate Clean in Between Shoprite Load to Card coupon
- Dannon Light and Fit Greek Yogurt $1.25
– used FREE Danon Shoprite Load to Card coupon ($1.25)
- Store Brand 2% Milk $3.71
So there you have it- a little peek into my weekly deal shopping trip! What was your favorite deal?