Your kitchen can be a large drain on your budget for many reasons. Here are 9 Ways to Save Money in the Kitchen by organizing and cutting down on waste.
Your kitchen, while the heart of your home, is also very likely the biggest money drain in your budget and for good reason. Between high dollar appliances that drain power all day and all night long, high cost groceries and waste, you’re spending a ton of money in that one room of your home. Take heart though if your kitchen is costing you too much. It is quite easy to save money in the kitchen when you start looking at how many ways there are to do so. Here are 9 Ways to Save Money in the Kitchen.
9 Ways to Save Money in the Kitchen
Keep your pantry organized. Are you spending too much on groceries? If so, a cluttered pantry could easily be the cause. When your pantry is disorganized, you could be buying items that you already own, that will go to waste before you’ll use them and more. Having an organized pantry however, allows you to see exactly what you need to buy and exactly what you don’t.
Plan a menu. You’ve heard it everywhere, but there a reason why everyone and their uncle tells you to start menu planning. Why? Because it does help you save money. When you have a planned menu, you can go to the grocery store knowing exactly what you need to purchase to feed your family the meals that you have planned for the upcoming week or month. This cuts down on the number of impulse buys that you do and allows you to shop the sales a bit better than without knowing.
Utilize your crockpot and freezer. Your crockpot and your freezer are your best friend when it comes to saving money in the kitchen. They can both help you prepare delicious meals for your family without stand over a stove all day. Crockpot meals are usually very budget friendly and freezer cooking is as well. Combine freezer cooking with menu planning and you can save 25% or more each month off your grocery bill.
Learn to stretch meals. Stretching meals is another great way to cut your grocery bill. Things such as rice and pasta can be added to your regular recipes to stretch the meal. This means that it will cost you less to fix since you’ll be using less. This is especially smart to do with meals that contain meat. Meat is often the most expensive portion of a family budget and stretching can reduce the amount of meat that you need per serving.
Fight phantom electric use. Run into your kitchen right now and look at how many small appliances are plugged in that could be unplugged. I’ll wait.
How many were there? Three? Five? More?
Those appliances are still using electricity even when they’re turned off. This is called phantom electric. You can cut your power bill by quite a bit each month simply by unplugging those small appliances and putting them away.
Shop Less and buy more. I realize that those four words contradict themselves, but allow me to explain; when you cut your grocery shopping back to once every two weeks or even once a month, you spend less month overall. You do however, end up buying more at once to last your family through the extended time before you shop again. Even though you might be spending more out of pocket with each grocery trip, you’re still saving money in the long run by not being in the store very often. This helps curb impulse buys, “sale” buys and the amount of wants that you splurge on.
Know what to pack full and what to let breathe. Did you know that your freezer works more efficiently when it is packed full? Or that the fridge is exactly the opposite? The freezer works best full because when it is full, there is much less room for warmer air to sit. When there is warmer air, your freezer must work twice as hard to keep things frozen. If you can’t buy enough groceries now to fill it, consider adding a few bottles of water to freeze. Not only will this help your freezer run more efficiently, but it will also help keep your food frozen in the event of a power outage. On the other hand, your fridge works best when it has room for air to circulate. Keeping these two things in mind will help you lower both your power bill by a significant amount each year.
Curb waste water use. Wasting water is the number one cause for a high-water bill and your kitchen sink is one of the biggest culprits. Water that gets run while doing dishes, water that gets forgotten about while filling up pots and pans and more are all pennies that add up quickly.
Go natural. Finally, once you’ve got all the other ways to save in the kitchen put into place, take a look at what you can cut by going natural. Things such as homemade dish soap, unpaper towels, even using a hand mixer over an electric one can save you even more money.