What are your grocery budget goals for 2011? Spend less money? Buy less convenience foods? Stock your pantry? Menu plan more? Learn to can?
How can I help you cut your grocery budget this year?
In 2010 I spent $308.94 a month on groceries, which was slightly over our $300 a month budget. We do a lot of entertaining, have 3 teenagers (and friends) that we feed, and spent several weeks without a functioning kitchen so I was excited to see we came very close to our budget.
In 2011 our goal is to keep our $300 budget. We bought a house last summer, so I hope to be able to put in at least a small garden for this year. Most of our yard is currently unusable thanks to years of neglect and too many trees, so I won't be able to grow all that I want this year, but every little bit helps! I am also hoping to put in an herb garden. I planted garlic in the fall (my first attempt so I hope it grows) and have a nice space outside the door to plant lots of other herbs that I use!
I also plan to preserve a lot more food this year. I finally have space to store home canned goods as well as having an excellent food dehydrator. I inherited a ton of jars from my sister-in-law a few years ago when she moved and I am looking forward to filling them up. My main goals for canning this year are to make all of my jams, jellies and preserves and all of my own spaghetti sauce. I would also like to learn to pressure can dried beans so that they are quick and easy to use (without all the sodium of store bought beans).
One of the biggest areas I already save on groceries is in making my own mixes. I haven't been as good at keeping up on the mixes the last few months because of all of our house stuff going on, but I am hoping to soon have all of my jars labeled and filled. I will share a picture when I get it done!
Today I am off for my first grocery shopping trip of the year! We are out of just about everything because we were hit with several unexpected expense at the end of last year. I figure this will be one of my more expensive trips of the year as I need to stock up on some essentials, but then I won't have to shop for a while!
I would love to hear what your grocery budget goals are and what skills you would like to learn this year to help keep your budget under control. Leave a comment below and one person will win a free copy of my ebook Shortcut Cooking: Saving Time and Money in the Kitchen!
I will pick a winner Monday morning!