Monday, September 19, 2011

Foodies Can Coupon and Menu Plan!

It's a new season, so I'm mixing things up.  Today I'm sharing my first guest post!  Today's guest writer is the lovely TiAnna Mae of The Fab Life... For Free.  Please check out her blog!

Do you want to do a feature for My Life on a Plate?  Of course you do!  Email me at keeleycancook (at) gmail (dot) com.

Foodies CAN Coupon and Menu Plan!

I get it, I get it! You’re a foodie, you enjoy exotic flavors, you want foods that thrill your taste buds, you want organic items, and you really don’t care how much you spend. I’m a foodie too, but I also enjoy doing other things with my cash like: traveling, movies, taking care of my son, and saving for the future. In this post, I’m going to give you a few quick tips on how to enjoy all the foods that you like while saving money doing it.

Great adventures start with a plan….a loose idea at least. Create a dinner menu plan. You can even create one for breakfast and lunch if you choose, however, dinner is the most important meal to plan. Usually it’s the time of day where you have the least amount of time and your whole family will partake of the meal (at some point at least). I would recommend setting a dinner menu plan in at least one week increments. As a foodie, you may change your mind or get a taste for something different, so you don’t want to plan too far in advance. Make sure to schedule things that you love eating all the time, as well as, new recipes that you come across. Try your best to plan your menu around the sales and coupons that you find, which is how you can achieve maximum savings.

Let me see your thumb! As a foodie, we enjoy fresh produce and bold flavors, so starting a vegetable and/or herb garden is a great idea. Herbs can be grown in small pots placed on your countertop, as long as it can get direct sunlight. Vegetables, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, and squash can be easy to grow and so rewarding to eat. Let’s not even get on the savings benefit. If you don’t want to try your hand at gardening, then definitely check out your local farmer’s market where you can get fresh chemical free produce for a lot cheaper than at the grocery store. You can usually find other specialty food items at a Farmer’s Market.

Got Meat? Coupons for meat are hard to come by, so the best way to save is to search the sale ads for your grocer and plan to stock up around holidays. There are always great deals on angus beef, pork ribs, T-bone steaks, etc. leading up to those “cook-out” holidays like: Memorial Day and Labor Day. You can also find great deals on Cornish hens, turkey products, and ham around Thanksgiving and Christmas. If you have a deep freezer, you can store your extra meats there, and if not, only buy what your freezer can hold. There will be another sale.

All seasonings are created equal…in my opinion. Smoked paprika is smoked paprika…it doesn’t matter the brand. Grab the cheapest one your little eyes can find. Farmer’s Markets are also great for finding deals on seasoning, and this is also where a fresh herb garden will come in handy. This may be breaking a foodie golden rule, but if you’re following a recipe that calls for a “non-essential” seasoning, don’t be afraid to leave it out if you don’t have it on the shelf. By non-essential, I mean something that if it were missing, the dish would taste fine, the same even. For example, using regular black pepper, when the recipe called for fresh ground pepper. Sure the flavor will be bolder if you use the fresh ground pepper, but it won’t make it taste nasty if you don’t use it.

Everyone likes a great deal. Foodie or not, everyone enjoys saving money. Coupons are great for specialty items that rarely go on sale. You can always find coupons for Almond Milk, Newman’s Salad Dressing, pumpernickel bread, Magnum ice cream bars, and other very luxe foodie-like treats. If there’s a coupon for it, you can find it at Coupon Diva and also check the manufacturer’s website. Lastly, a Google search can even turn up coupons for those expensive specialty items.

Try these tips to see if you can save a little extra change to do other things that are equally as important, such as, paying bills!


  1. Great tips! I must admit, I'm not much of a couponer. But mostly because we live in a tiny apartment and storage is always an issue. But now that we are purchasing a home and moving in a a few weeks, saving some extra cash will definitely be on my radar and menu planning will be essential:)

  2. Maddy- Congratulations on your home purchase!!!! You'd be surprised at how much you can save if you just put forth a little effort. That savings can be put towards something else.

  3. Omg Omg Omg! Congrats Maddy on your new home! I'm so excited for your!


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