I have been on a mission to cut our grocery spending. It is in the top 3 of household expenditures in the US, and a killer for our budget every month. This is even more important now that we cut out eating out to less than once a week for the family.
I have found some great cost cutting measures in how I purchase groceries, but I still wasn’t happy. Recently, I started tallying how much we spent on non-alcoholic drinks in our house. With two kids, a husband who loves soda, and my iced tea habit, we were spending $145 a month on things to drink!
I mean, water is free, right?
So when I started working on our grocery bill, the extra drinks were the first to go.
Here is how we cut:
Soda – $44/month:
Soda is horrible for you. It eats your insides. I have a love/hate relationship with soda, and I only drink diet soda. My husband, on the other hand, could go through 3 12-packs of soda per week. At least.
At first, we tried Soda Stream. It is great, depending on how much you drink soda. You can usually recoup your start-up costs within a year. Then the price is drastically lower than even drinking generic soda.
But – you are drinking soda like a fish.
Recently, my husband came home from a check-up with our new doctor. She spent 10 minutes discussing with him HOW bad soda REALLY is for you.
He cut it cold turkey. I could have told him that, but I digress.
Iced Tea – $36/month:
Instead of soda, my husband decided he could drink iced tea. He can even drink it unsweetened (the only way I like it) now that I keep unsweetened tea in the house. He will add sugar or lemon here and there, but otherwise, it is just black tea.
Those refrigerated jugs of tea are awesome, they are pre-brewed, fresh, and super convenient.
We also go through AT LEAST 3 jugs per week. At $3 a pop, that is $9/week, which is $36/month.
I started drinking tea as a teenager. We always brewed our own tea from tea bags, then poured it into pitchers of cold water. I even made sun tea in the summer. Do you know how cheap it is to make your own tea?
I brew 1 pitcher of tea with 4 tea bags. I just bought 100 bags of Lipton tea for $5.69. Each tea bag is 6 cents. So a pitcher of tea is TWENTY-FOUR Cents! For the same exact thing! I buy brewed tea and water for $3, when I could make it for $.24. It takes me three minutes. Enough said.
So even if I make 10 pitchers of tea for the week, I am now only up to $2.40 a week.
In two simple but budget boosting measures, I have cut $70.40 out of our budget per month.
So there you have it! I cut my drink expenses by almost 50%. It isn’t earth shattering, but $70.40 per month at 12 months is $844.80. I am still working on cutting out juice, but this is definitely a start!