Keep a Food Budget this Holiday--And Stick to It

Cut your food costs this season with these simple tips

Whether you’re preparing a meal for your extended family or just taking advantage of grocery-store markdowns, follow these savvy tips from our favorite bloggers to maximize your holiday fun without maxing out your savings.

TRIM COSTS AND FAT 

“Pecan and traditional pumpkin pies are laden with fat and sugar. Save time (and calories) by offering fruit or pretzels to dip into melted dark chocolate.”

—Sarah Matheny, peasandthankyou.com  

PLAN EASY MEALS 

“My best advice is to keep the food simple. Overnight breakfast casserole is a favorite in our house on Christmas morning, and all it takes is a little preparation the night before.”

—Michelle Murray, moneysavingmadness.com  

MAKE MORE WITH LESS 

“I’ve found that boneless, skinless chicken breasts are a larger portion than a single serving, so I butterfly them and serve half a breast to each member of my family.”

—Denise Sawyer, wholesomemommy.com  

STOCK UP 

“Fill your pantry with staples such as flour, sugar, butter, canned goods, spices and broths, which are priced to sell at this time of year. Make room in your freezer for turkeys, which are cheapest after Thanksgiving.”

—Melanie Feehan, thecoupongoddess.com  

COUPON WISELY 

“I use my coupons for holiday treats such as cookie dough. I bought some for 39 cents; it was on sale after Easter just because it had pastel-colored chips.”

—Jennifer Roberts, jenspends.com