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News and quick-hit commentary from around mid-Michigan ... from the Morning Sun.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Ten ways to save money on groceries

1. Stay away from buying individually packaged foods. They cost more. Instead of buying cute packages of pre-cut carrots, cut them yourself.
2. Cut back on convenience foods. Instead of buying canned chili or soup, make it yourself. You can even buy dry soup packets from a bulk food store or a thrift bakery.
3. Recycle your leftovers. Use yesterday’s roast beef in a stew for dinner tonight.
4. Grow your own produce. Section off a small part of your back yard and create a vegetable garden. This is also a great family project to do together. If you are new to this, start with tomatoes and experiment.
If you don’t have a lot of space, try container gardening, by planting a tomato plant or a pepper plant in a pot for your deck or porch.
In the summer, local farmers markets also will be a good source of produce.
5. Don’t buy as many snacks. Store-bought snacks are loaded with sugar, salt and fat. Try making your own snacks. Bake some muffins or cookies instead.
6. Do most of your cooking ahead of time. To avoid last-minute fast food, cook meals ahead of time and freeze them. They can be pulled out of the freezer and defrosted in the microwave in the same time it would take to get fast food.
7. Don’t stray from your shopping list. Unless the item is on sale, it’s in your budget and you know it will be used, don’t buy it.
8. If possible, don’t take your children with you to the grocery store to avoid buying items you may not need, such as candy or expensive products with flashy packaging.
9. Limit your shopping trip to 30 minutes. You will be less tempted to purchase impulse items.
10. Make a food budget and stick with it!
Reported by Lisa Satayut, Sun Staff Writer


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