Trying to feed your family healthier options without breaking the bank? I feel you girl. When I find a rockin’ deal on “healthier” foods I feel like I’ve just found a $50 bill in the pocket of last year’s winter coat. These deals (like that elusive $50 bill) should not be so hard to find.
Whether you are buying organic, gluten-free, non-GMO, vegetarian or vegan foods, the expense in just one shopping trip alone can kill your entire food budget for the month. These items can be so expensive in fact, it could deter you from buying them at all. Let’s not let that happen, mmmkay?
Tips for Finding Deals on Organic, Gluten-Free, Non-GMO, Vegetarian or Vegan Foods
Let me tell you a little about myself before we get started saving all this money. I spent the last ten years of my life as an extreme couponer, I ran a deal and coupon blog called Deal Detecting Diva before switching gears and turning it into this website, Heart Hook Home. My husband now authors his own money saving blog, Penny Pinchin’ Paul.
I first started couponing after our oldest son was born. He has extensive medical issues, mostly relating to his CHD (congenital heart defect) and he spent all of three months in the PICU before he was strong enough to come home. I kid you not, the hospital charged our insurance $2.5M (yes, $2,500,000) for his care during those three months. Two open heart surgeries, two straight weeks on life support and three months total in the PICU will do that. Meeting our deductible was easy, but that doesn’t mean paying for it was. That, my friends, is when I started to coupon, when I started the coupon blog Deal Detecting Diva and when I started geeking out on our finances and began spending as little as possible in every facet of our lives. What is the first thing to focus on when cutting expenses? For us it was food and entertainment.
After spending years and years finding the coupons and matching them up to individual sales as a coupon blogger, I’m going to open up and tell you exactly HOW I am able to find these deals, what blogs I read and what stores I shop. You ready?
1. Check for coupons
Coupons for the organic/gluten-free etc items can be found on Coupons.com, Mambo Sprouts, Common Kindness, Hopster, Health-E-Savers, on the brand’s website, on their Facebook pages or in email newsletters. You can also check for a specific coupon using a coupon database.
If there is a particular brand you enjoy over others, the first place to check for discounts will be on their website. Do they have an email newsletter? Many times they offer their best coupons to their email subscribers. Also check their Facebook page for coupons.
2. Know your store’s coupon policy
By knowing your store’s coupon policy, what you can and can not do at different stores, you are one step ahead of the game. For instance: I know that my local Dillons store (a Kroger affiliate) will accpet coupons 14 days past their expiration date. Not all Dillons stores will and not all Kroger stores will (it is up to each individual store), but it sure is worth asking next time you head in for groceries! You could save big just by knowing that you can use that coupon that expired last week instead of simply tossing it out.
Do you shop at Whole Foods? Whole Foods doesn’t have to equal Whole Paycheck. They have store coupons on their website and different in-store that you can use ON TOP of any manufacturer’s coupons you find on the brand’s website, Facebook page etc. Double up those coupons and save BIG. In fact I get some of my very best deals at Whole Foods.
3. Check the apps
When I say apps I mean smartphone cash back apps like Ibotta, Checkout51, MobiSave and more. I have a list of 27 of my favorite apps for saving money that will blow your socks off (and maybe even get you that vegan cheese for less than half price). The vast majority of these apps DO allow you to use paper coupons when purchasing the items (and you’ll still get the rebate). Cha-ching!
4. Watch the sales
Just like knowing your coupon policy, watching the sales will help to cut down on costs as well. Don’t need that $6 flour today or even next week? If it is something you know you’ll buy sooner or later and it’s half price today, why pay full price for it next month? Buy when the item is on sale, and absolutely buy it if the sale matches up with any of your coupons!
5. Buy in bulk
Similar to buying when the item is on sale instead of when you need it, buying in bulk can save significantly as well. Always check the unit price or the price per ounce to see which size package is the better deal, and check the brand’s website to see if they offer a discount for buying directly through them.
6. Buy online
Do you have Amazon Prime? Some of the very best deals I score on organic/non-GMO type products are right there on Amazon. Amazon offers Prime Pantry which frequently offers discounts if you buy so many items, they also have a page dedicated to natural and organic deals AND they have a page just for coupons that you can apply to specific products AND they offer a steep discount if you choose their “subscribe & save” option when you purchase. Don’t want to commit to a recurring subscription? Just cancel the subcription it when your order arrives. You’re still saving up to 15% the first time.
7. Follow coupon blogs
Oh boy, do I know ALL about the coupon blogs. Now, I will say that Penny Pinchin’ Paul is great, and I’m not saying that just because he is my husband or because I taught him everything he knows ( 😉 ) but also because he posts the full coupon matchups for TWENTY different stores including Whole Foods, Dillons/Kroger, Target, CVS, Walgreens etc, and Sprouts is coming soon as well!
My favorite page on his entire blog? The searchable deal database of ALL of the stores he covers. So, let’s say that I’m wanting some Blue Diamond gluten-free Nut Thins, and I’m not sure if they are on sale anywhere or if there are coupons. I’ll head on over to that page on his blog and enter “Blue Diamond” in the search box. The page will then display all of the stores that currently have Blue Diamond products on sale, for how much, and it will list any applicable coupons to lower that price even further. Amazing, right?!
It is possible to eat GOOD food, while also getting GOOD deals.
So what are you waiting for?
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Ways to Save at Kroger (from an Extreme Couponer turned Frugalista)
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