Keep the numbers on your grocery bill from climbing with these money-saving tips.
Fruits and vegetables don't carry as high a price tag when they are at the peak of their growing season. In addition to being a good value, seasonal produce also tastes best because it's picked in its prime. To find a list of seasonal produce, visit fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org, which is run by the Produce for Better Health Foundation.
Meat is a big-ticket item, so cutting back can lower your costs. Try vegetarian swaps such as canned white beans (rinsed and drained) in pasta sauce instead of ground beef, or black beans in place of part of the chicken in a stir-fry. Aim for at least one meat-free meal a day. When you do eat meat, try to decrease your portions by at least 25 percent.
You pay for convenience with precut fruits and veggies such as bagged lettuce, presliced apples and shredded carrots. Buy produce uncut, and when you get home from the store, spend 15 to 20 minutes chopping it. Fill baggies and containers with the prepped fruits and veggies so they're easy to grab.