Dec 10, 2009
Business folks are familiar with the phrase "you have to spend money to make money" - and in one particular area the same concept can apply to money saving at home. It seems counterintuitive, but a minor investment now can save you TONS of money on groceries in the coming months! Here's what should be on your shopping (or Christmas!) list THIS MONTH:
Figure out where you can fit one more appliance, and get yourself a stand-alone freezer! They come in many sizes, including small units that will fit into an apartment setup, so there's no reason not to take the plunge! Yes, it's an investment - but the money you save by being able to store food for long periods will more than make up the investment within the first year you own it.
The biggest reason I can keep my budget so low is that when freezable food goes on sale, I buy A LOT. I package into meal-sized portions (or make freezer meals) and sock them away in my chest freezer. I NEVER pay full price for meat, cheese or bread, I can take advantage of the bounty from other folks' gardens, and I can OFTEN skip grocery shopping altogether because I've stocked up my freezer during the really big sales.
The savings add up - I buy boneless chicken breast only when it's $2 or less (usually less) per pound. Regular price is around $4.50/lb here...and we eat at LEAST 75 pounds of chicken a year. That's a $187 savings just on chicken!
Why not just use my fridge freezer? Aside from having more space, a chest/upright freezer will keep food much colder (you open it less often so it holds its temperature better and keeps food at more consistent temps). That means food will last even LONGER than in a regular fridge freezer.
So instead of the Wii, get a Frigidaire - and reap the savings all year!
get more in-depth info on freezing and freezer cooking here and here