There are few things I love more than getting a good deal! Frugal Franny is pretty much my 90-year-old alter ego, and she loves saving money. Even more, she loves coupons! She sure makes me do some, um, interesting things at times though…
If you’ve read my previous post to this effect (Healthy Body, Healthy Bank Account: Eating Well Without Spending a Fortune) you are privy to my
secret tips for eating well while stretching your hard-earned dollars. (Head over and read it if you haven’t already! It’s kind of the cornerstone for my whole healthy-eating journey.)
One of the points I mention in that post involves coupons, or, rather, the lack thereof. Unfortunately, the healthier you eat, the less coupons are available to you. The Big Brand Names are über stealthy about getting people to buy their junk, and (no surprise) coupons are a huge weapon in their arsenal.
However, that’s not to say that coupons for organic or healthy items don’t exist. They’re just more rare. When they do appear, you’ve got to be ready to take full advantage! So, to keep the ball rolling from my prior money-saving post, I wanted to show you what I pulled off on our shopping trip this past Sunday.
Example 1: Silk Almond Milk
You may know already that we no longer drink cows’ milk, in favor of almond milk, with Silk being our brand of choice. Depending where you shop, a Silk half-gallon is priced anywhere between $2.56 and $5.00 (what?!), so shopping around is totally critical.
I usually stock up like mad when Publix puts them on sale for $2.50 every couple months, or, in this particular case, at Walmart for the current price of $2.56 (the cheapest anywhere). At present, Publix does have them on sale, true, but for $3.00, so that wasn’t my lowest-priced option.
Here’s where this gets interesting! I had coupons from a Red Plum mailer (including my neighbors’ unwanted ones that I’d plucked from our mail center’s recycle bin), all with the expiration date of 8/26/16. The time was nigh to use ’em or lose ’em!
Before I continue, I should explain that fresh almond milk has a way longer shelf life than cows’ milk, so as long as you pay attention to the dates marked on the cartons, you can buy many at one time without worrying that they’ll spoil.
Check out my little Silk army! I’m not sure if you can make it out in the pic, but these all have expiration dates of 10/25 or 10/29, which is 10 weeks from now, giving us plenty of time to use through them.
Now, if you’re asking why in the world I bought seven, well, that takes us back to the coupon thing. I had five coupons to use: two “$1 off 2” and three “$0.55 off 1”. So, that dictated that I needed to buy seven cartons. Yeah, we looked nuttier than our almond milk walking around with seven cartons in our cart, but check out how this pans out.
We saved a grand total of $3.65 with the coupons, but another thing to note is what this does to the cost per item. Buying seven of these at regular retail ($2.56 ea.) would’ve come out to $17.92, though we only spent $14.27, meaning that each carton only cost us $2.04.
Ok, yeah, in the grand scheme of things, saving $3.65 isn’t going to make or break anyone. But if you do this enough times with enough items you buy, this savings adds up fast.
Example 2: Dr. Praeger’s
Here’s another example from Sunday. I was cruising Publix’s digital ad, and noticed a “Buy 2 get 1 Free” store coupon for Dr. Praeger’s veggie products. I did a quick Google search for manufacturer’s coupons, and found a printable one on Dr. P’s Facebook for $1 off 1 item.
So, you see, this is another example where being savvy can totally save ya. Each of these was priced at $4.99 per 4-pack, though by using the store coupon and two manufacturer’s coupons, it came out like this in the end:
- Box 1: $4.99
- Mfr. Cpn -1.00
- Box 2: $4.99
- Mfr. Cpn -1.00
- Box 3: $4.99
- Store Cpn -4.99
→ Total cost: $7.98 (aka $2.66/box) ; Total saved: $6.99
See how easy that was? I literally cut the cost per box almost in half – half! That’s pretty awesome! As if that weren’t enough, I also had another Publix store coupon, for $5 off $30. So, we bought some other sale items, hit our $30, and *BAM* got another $5 off. Score!
Not to mention, I plan to go back and re-do this entire transaction again, this time getting three packs of kale burgers instead of the California version. Hey, why not? This way, we’ll be stocked up on veggie burgers for quite a while!
Every chance I get, I enjoy pulling off hauls like the above. I stock up like a squirrel with acorns, making sure that we’ve got enough to last us through (ideally) until the next big sale for that particular item. It makes paying full retail price unnecessary for many items!
Like my prior post, I hope this one also helped to show that you can get way more for your money than you think, easier than it seems. By staying alert and playing sales to your advantage (and combining with coupons) it’s totally a game-changer for making healthier eating more affordable.
You can have exactly what you want and keep your bank account smiling too! Who cares if sometimes you might look a little nutty in the process?! Hey, if they’re not paying my bill, then their opinion doesn’t matter!
Wishing you healthier, happier days!
Questions? Comments? Hit me up below.