How to save Money on Groceries WITHOUT Cutting Coupons

We’re all looking for cheaper groceries, but what about for those who want to save money on groceries without using coupons?

save money on groceries without using coupons

Often I use coupons. But there are many times I don’t for the simple fact that cutting coupons can be time consuming. Sometimes life gets too busy. As a busy mom of three young kids there are times I just haven’t gotten around to sitting down and cutting my coupons I need for my grocery shopping.

For one reason or another, some people would rather just stay away from coupons. Maybe you just don’t have enough time. Maybe all the coupons you see aren’t for anything you really buy. Maybe you live in an area where the coupons aren’t valid much of the time.

Back in the day coupons were usually either mailed to you or you cut them from flyers and newspapers. Nowadays you often need to print coupons from coupon sites. While this is more convenient for some, for others it is a hassle.

It uses your paper and ink. Or maybe you don’t even own a printer so you can’t print them at home. And who wants to go to a printing place to print coupons? Time wise and money wise it just isn’t very cost effective.

Whatever the reason you don’t want to or can’t use coupons, there is good news. You can save a lot of money on groceries without coupons. Coupons are not the only way to save at the grocery store.

Many people save a ton of money without ever clipping coupons. And you can too!

Today I want to share with you the many ways you can save on groceries without ever cutting a coupon!


This post contains affiliate links.  Please see our full disclosure policy HERE.

Cash-back apps

Okay, I wanted to start with this one because for some this may still be too “coupon” like. But for others, cash-back apps are a great alternative to cutting coupons while still reaping the benefit of coupon savings. Cash-back apps are basically apps you download to your phone with offers on groceries that you may buy that will give you cash back when you upload your receipt. To upload you receipt all you do is take a picture of it and upload it to your app with your offers checked off!

Some great cashback apps are:


Ibotta (For US residents)

Caddle (For Canadian residents – use referral code AMANDA99683 for an extra bonus buck when you complete your first offer)

Look for the loss leaders

What is a loss leader? A loss leader is a product the grocery store is selling for an incredibly low price that in the end they actually lose money on it. Why would they do that, you ask? Well, to get you in the store. They know that more than likely most people will buy more than just that loss leader product, effectively making up for the money they lose on it.

Where can you find loss leaders? Generally you’ll find them on the front and back of the weekly sales flyers.

Look for discounted meat.

We often buy our meat at 30% off. It’s set to expire so they drop the price. For us the expiration is not a concern as long as it hasn’t come and gone because we freeze it when we get home. Meat is so expensive these days and so any way we can save on it is a bonus.

You can also buy cheaper cuts of meat. Cheaper cuts of meat can taste amazing when you cook them in the slow cooker or in a stew or soup that has been bubbling on the stove for a few hours.

Many stores have a certain day they always mark down their meat (and other items.) Find out what day they do that and try and arrange your shopping day to be the same so you can take advantage of their markdowns.

To read about more ways to save on meat at the grocery store, check out the post I wrote about it here.

Do a pantry, fridge, and freezer inventory

How many times have you stood in the grocery store looking at a product, trying to remember if you have some at home still? It’s not as bad if it’s a non-perishable item, but if it is a perishable item you can be wasting your money if you can’t get through eating it all before it goes bad. Even buying too much of a non-perishable item can waste money because if you don’t need any during your present grocery trip you can possibly wait to buy it till it goes on sale.

Doing a pantry, fridge, and freezer inventory doesn’t have to be hard. You can write down what is in there, or if that seems like too much work, just a quick check before you go shopping can go a long way in overbuying what you don’t need.

Shop the sales and meal plan accordingly

Along with looking for the loss leaders in the flyer, you should also check out they other sales going on. You can then meal plan based on what is on sale in the flyer. Make cheap meals using what is on sale each week and it will really bring down your grocery budget.

Shop in season

This kind of goes hand in hand with shopping the sales. What you’ll notice in the flyers is that whatever produce is in season for that week is what generally tends to be on sale. In our area in the spring we can expect to see asparagus and leeks for a low price, in the summer it’s all the most beautiful berries, tomatoes, and cucumbers, in the fall it’s squash, potatoes, carrots, and in the winter the clementines are always a great price.

Make a list – and stick to it

Going into a grocery store without a list is a recipe for disaster. Every time you grocery shop you should have a list. You should also stick to it. A list is only good if you don’t buy a bunch of items that are not on it.

Don’t be brand loyal

When you are saving money in the grocery store it helps to not be brand loyal. Generally you’ll find the cheapest price with a store brand or generic brand, but that isn’t always the case. Basically, go with the lowest price regardless of brand.

Now, I will say there are some products that I prefer one brand over another. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that. However, if you are brand loyal on every single item you buy it may be time to give up your loyalty and save some money.

Shop at the budget grocery stores

It always amazes me the price difference of the same product, brand and all, at various grocery stores. There are a few grocery stores we tend to shop at, and a few others we rarely enter. We save significantly just by shopping at the budget grocery stores.

Shop by yourself

I know this isn’t always possible, but if you can shop alone, make sure you do it. It’s a lot easier to stay within budget when you don’t have little ones asking you for a bunch of things, or your spouse tossing a bunch of things in the cart that aren’t on the list. 🙂

Stock up on rock bottom priced items

If you see an excellent price for an item you are buying, stock up and buy some extra. A great way to keep track of the lowest price you can purchase certain items is with a price list. Basically, a price list is where you write down certain products you regularly buy and then you keep track of the prices you see it listed at. You will start to discover how low that item sells for at its rock bottom price.

You can make your own price list or you can check out the one I have with my kitchen printables pack here (which also includes a pantry inventory sheet.)

Avoid shopping when you are hungry

It’s never a good idea to enter a store full of food when you are hungry. Everything looks SO amazing in the store when you are hungry. Always make a point to eat a good meal before you do your grocery shopping. It’s amazing how much less you will buy when you have a full stomach.

Price match

Many grocery stores will match the price of their competitors. Just show them the flyer for that week that the competitor has put out and they will often give you your item at that price. This saves you money on gas as well because you aren’t driving all over going to multiple stores. Of course you will want to be sure that your local grocery store price matches with the competitors in the area so definitely ask.

Look at the bottom and top of the shelves

Often you will find the higher priced items at eye level. Look at the bottom and top shelves to find better priced brands. While both top and bottom may have the cheaper priced products, I’ve found that the bottom is where I usually find them.


So, as you can see there are more ways than just coupons to save at the grocery store. Many people save quite a bit of money on groceries without using coupons. If you want to save money on food but don’t want to deal with the hassle of coupons, try some of the above ideas on your next trip.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *