The price of groceries continues to rise, which is why it is important to shop around for the best deals and make every penny stretch to help meet the needs and requirements of your budget. One way to save money on groceries is to live off what’s in your pantry. How can you effectively live of what’s in your pantry?
Inventory the Contents of Your Cupboards
Before you head off to the shops with a shopping list a mile long, stop and take a good look at the food you actually have in your pantry, fridge, freezer, and cupboards. Take the time to inventory food you already have on hand. You may be surprised to see just how much food you actually have. If you have four boxes of penne, a box of risotto, couscous, twenty-five cans of vegetables, tomatoes, soups, seafood, canned meat and broths, you have the basis for several meals, just from what is inside your pantry.
Reduces Food Waste
Living off what is inside your pantry will help to reduce food waste, which in turn saves you money. How often do you stock your cupboards, pantry, fridge and freezer and then discover a few months later that you have allowed the “use by” date on certain foods to expire? Eating food past the “best before” or “use by” date can be risky, but if you take the time to go through food you have in your pantry before you shop for groceries, you are less likely to buy more food and waste food you already have at home.
It goes without saying that the more often you shop, the more money you are likely to spend, even if you are generally frugal and stick to a strict budget. A very effective way to save money on groceries is to live off what’s in your pantry until you have an actual need to go shopping. In the meantime, shop for essentials such as fresh fruit and vegetables, milk, bread, cheese and butter as the need arises, but scale back on a “big shop” until you actually need to re-stock your pantry.