Food http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/20/all en-US 6 Creative Ways to Save Money With Bulk Buying http://www.wisebread.com/6-creative-ways-to-save-money-with-bulk-buying <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-creative-ways-to-save-money-with-bulk-buying" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/farmers_market_000038571134.jpg" alt="Woman buying food in bulk at farmers market" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When it comes to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/bulk-buying-basics-what-to-buy-how-to-store-and-money-saving-tips">buying in bulk</a>, warehouse clubs get all the publicity. But there's a lot of stuff they simply don't sell, or the amounts they do sell just aren't big enough. It's times like these when some out-of-the-box thinking on bulk buying comes in handy. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-didnt-know-you-could-buy-in-bulk?ref=seealso">10 Things You Didn&rsquo;t Know You Could Buy in Bulk</a>)</p> <p>Below are some <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-food-items-to-always-buy-in-bulk">bulk buying ideas</a> that you've probably never considered, but could end up saving you significant money.</p> <h2>1. Home Improvement Materials</h2> <p>If you're considering a significant home improvement project and want to tackle the work yourself, look into buying in bulk at the <a href="http://www.homedepot.com/c/Pro_VolumePricing"> Home Depot Pro Desk</a>. If you spend at least $2,500, you're eligible for exclusive savings and rewards when buying building supplies like lumber, masonry, nails, screws, and sheetrock.</p> <p>If you're doing landscape work at your house and the idea of hauling 25 bags of bark is overwhelming, consider buying landscaping materials in bulk from a local supplier. If you don't own a truck, borrow a friend's and haul things like bark, rock, and soil directly to your home and easily save 25% to 50%, depending on the material.</p> <h2>2. Online &quot;Subscribe &amp; Save&quot; Programs</h2> <p>It seems like every other person you see at Costco or Sam's Club pushes a cart around with a huge package of toilet paper or dog food hanging over the edge. While these are often good bulk buys, did you know that you can typically get the same products mailed directly to your home via online &quot;Subscribe &amp; Save&quot; programs? The two big players are <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/subscribe-and-save/details/?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JBPXV7KSAISOFU6R"> Amazon</a> and<a href="http://goto.target.com/c/27771/81938/2092?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.target.com%2Fc%2Ftarget-subscriptions-ways-to-shop%2F-%2FN-55b84"> Target</a>, and their pricing is surprisingly competitive. They both offer free membership, free delivery, and Amazon even offers 15% off if you have at least three items mailed to your home on a regular schedule.</p> <p>If you are a busy parent, and love the idea of having certain items sent to your doorstep on a regular schedule, you should definitely look into it. Some of the popular items include diapers, toilet paper, laundry detergent, dog food, shampoo, soap, and paper towels. The best part of both programs is the flexibility. If, for example, you have enough toilet paper to last six months, you can easily postpone future deliveries with no penalty.</p> <h2>3. Meat</h2> <p>If you have the freezer space, consider teaming up with friends or family and buying half a hog or a quarter of a steer.</p> <p>First, consider purchasing a 4-H project animal from your local county fair. You'll pay more than market price in most cases, but you'll be supporting local 4-H kids and end up with very high quality, antibiotic-free meat.</p> <p>Second, check out your local butcher shop for bulk meat buys. For example, my local butcher shop has a &quot;beef deal&quot; for five pounds of each of the following: round steak, chuck steak, 7-bone chuck roast, short ribs, and ground beef. Total price = $89.99 or $3.60/pound. If you have the freezer space, it's a great way to stock up and save.</p> <h2>4. Gift Cards</h2> <p>I have two kids who play youth sports year-round, and we are constantly buying coach gifts. Gift cards make awesome presents, especially when you buy in bulk from Costco. I recently bought five $10 Jamba Juice gift cards for only $30. So the next time you are hard up for a gift for a coach, teacher, or friend, swing by Costco and stock up on the cheap. Another cool thing about buying gift cards from Costco is they often feature <em>local </em>restaurants and businesses in addition to the usual chains.</p> <h2>5. Gas</h2> <p>For a $30 annual membership fee, <a href="http://www.mygallons.com/">MyGallons</a> will allow you to buy a large portion of gas at the current price. The service basically protects against a gas price increase over the coming months or years. You fill up at the station of your choice, and get a credit to your checking account or MyGallons debit card whenever you buy gas for more than your &quot;buy-in&quot; price. If gas prices go down, you can hold your gallons indefinitely until prices go up again, which they undoubtedly will. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-gas-rewards-credit-cards">Best Gas Rewards Credit Cards</a>)</p> <h2>6. Fruit and Veggies</h2> <p>If your family devours fruits and veggies like they are going out of style, you know just how expensive it can be to keep the fridge stocked. The absolute best way to stock up and save is by purchasing straight from the grower. Summer and fall are terrific times to hit up local farms, roadside stands, and farmer markets. I buy apples, apricots, peaches, and nectarines by the bushel basket from a local farm and typically negotiate a price 25%-40% cheaper than the grocery store.</p> <p>Also, ask local farmers if they have any &quot;seconds&quot; available to score a great deal on fruit and veggies that may not be perfectly shaped or colored, but still taste amazing. We are talking 50% off compared to the price of &quot;perfect&quot; varieties. By building a rapport with the farmer, they'll let you in on some great bulk buys.</p> <p><em>What is the most out-of-the-box bulk purchase you have ever made and how much did it save you?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-creative-ways-to-save-money-with-bulk-buying">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping">The Best and Worst Times to Go Grocery Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-food-items-to-always-buy-in-bulk">13 Food Items to Always Buy in Bulk</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-places-to-get-coupons-online">The Best Places to Get Coupons Online</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars">20 Easy Ways to Stretch Your Grocery Dollars</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unbearably-stupid-packaging">Dumbest packaging ever?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Shopping building materials bulk Food gas groceries subscriber programs warehouse stores Tue, 07 Apr 2015 13:00:08 +0000 Kyle James 1370265 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Have a Cheaper Easter http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-easter <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-easter" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/easter_eggs_000057340714.jpg" alt="mother and son having cheaper easter by painting eggs" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Easter has never been a break-the-bank holiday, but you can easily go overboard. Keep your bunny budget in check with these tips to cut costs during this time-honored spring celebration.</p> <h2>1. Shop For Easter Gifts on Presidents' Day or Post-Valentine's Day</h2> <p>Easter baskets are filled with more than sweets, like small trinkets, toys, and clothing. In fact, one of my favorite Easter gifts as a kid was a kite, and when I'm making an Easter basket for my husband, I like to include a swimsuit for summer. To save on this and other items I put in the basket, I shop ahead for holidays like Easter during big sale events throughout the year, like Presidents' Day and after Valentine's Day. The former is a great way to score big savings on clothing items, while the latter yields copious amounts of deeply discounted candy.</p> <h2>2. Make the Easter Egg Hunt a Neighborhood Affair</h2> <p>What's better than an Easter egg hunt with your family? An Easter egg hunt with multiple families! Not only is this a good chance to spend quality time with your neighbors and catch up after a long winter spent hibernating, but it also provides all the neighborhood kids with ample space and goodies to search and find.</p> <p>To coordinate the effort, send out a free sign-up form from <a href="http://signupgenius.com">SignUpGenius</a> asking participating families to contribute one dozen eggs for each child, which is made cheaper by buying plastic eggs in bulk. Users can leaves comments on the sign-up form to let everyone know what goodies they'll put in their eggs to ensure a wide variety of treats.</p> <h2>3. Use Multi-Purpose Containers as Easter &quot;Baskets&quot;</h2> <p>If you and your family have traditional Easter baskets that you use from year-to-year, that's awesome &mdash; and your kids will cherish it (or at least the memory of it) forever. If you don't, consider using multi-use containers that cost you no money out of pocket, or that you can repurpose after Easter. You can use something lying around the house &mdash; perhaps one of your kids' beach pails. Or, do like I did and buy a container that I already needed for the house; a nice basket I picked up for my dogs' toys, which I'll use as my husband's Easter basket this year.</p> <h2>4. Limit the Candy in Festive Packaging</h2> <p>Seasonal items are corralled into one section of the store because it makes all the holiday things easy to find. It also makes it more difficult for you to compare prices with the same items that come in everyday packaging &mdash; a stealthy marketing tactic that's silently robbing you blind.</p> <p>When I recently walked down the Easter aisle at Target, I found lots of fun, pastel-colored goodies. Some of the prices were reasonable, but others were above and beyond a rip-off. The candies in plastic eggs, especially, have a high markup because of the price it costs the manufacturer for such festive packaging. They try to fool you with the $1 price tag &mdash; you think you're getting a great deal at just a buck &mdash; but don't be a sucker. Some of those packages have a mere handful of tiny candies inside the eggs whereas if you buy the regular-size bag of the same candy, you can get up to five times as much for around $2.50.</p> <p>That's not to say you shouldn't buy any candy in festive packaging &mdash; what's Easter without a few bunnies and chicks in the basket? But limit yourself and fill the rest with treats from the everyday candy aisle. Your kids totally don't care what color the foil wrapping is on their favorite chocolate.</p> <h2>5. Ditch the Plastic &quot;Grass&quot; for Recycled Paper</h2> <p>What happens to all that non-biodegradable plastic &quot;grass&quot; that fills the bottom of Easter baskets to make them look prettier? It ends up in the trash, where it will eventually make its way to its forever home at a landfill (once your kids dig out all the loose jellybeans hidden underneath it). Save the planet and your money by reversing the process. Take colorful paper &mdash; like weekly circulars &mdash; out of the recycling bin, cut into thin shreds, and fill the baskets with this decorative &quot;grass&quot; instead.</p> <h2>6. Shop the Big-Box Craft Stores for Discounts</h2> <p>Most of you probably head to Walmart or Target for Easter items like plastic eggs and decorations (kudos if they're on sale), while savvier shoppers reduce costs by sticking to dollar stores. I take an altogether different approach and purchase these seasonal items at craft stores that consistently have 40% to 50% off sales and similar coupons on a daily to weekly basis. A.C. Moore and Michaels, in particular, are well known for their deep discounts that you can readily find with a few flicks of the finger. You can only use one coupon per one regular-price item, so you may have to spread out the purchases. My gym is right next to A.C. Moore, so I pop into the store several times a week to get everything I need at a serious savings.</p> <p>If stopping by these stores multiple times to stock up isn't convenient for you, consider holding out until the last minute to get what you need.</p> <p>&quot;Typically, Easter egg packages at Hobby Lobby are $.88 or $.97, but during the last week before Easter they're an extra 40% off,&quot; says Melea Johnson, founder of Freebie2Deals.com. &quot;Buy enough so it's only a one-time purchase that will last for years.&quot;</p> <h2>7. Search for Free Easter Activities in Your Area</h2> <p>If you don't live in a neighbor where an all-hands Easter egg hunt or Easter-themed activity is feasible, your family can still get in on holiday fun at other local events &mdash; for free.</p> <p>&quot;Don't pay to attend a huge Easter egg hunt in your city,&quot; Johnson advises. &quot;There are plenty of places in your area that offer free Easter egg hunts throughout the weekend.&quot;</p> <p>Search the Internet or browse your local calendars, like your Chamber of Commerce or nearby churches.</p> <h2>8. Pass on PAAS, Consider Kool-Aid Instead</h2> <p>Paas Easter egg kits are somewhat of an American tradition &mdash; at least they were when I was a kid &mdash; but with so many other options these days, it's probably not important to your kids with which brand their eggs are dyed. If that's the case, get creative to save cash by swapping out the prepackaged kit for a homemade version made from your kids' favorite flavored drink packets.</p> <p>&quot;Use Kool-Aid to dye your Easter eggs; it's so much cheaper than purchasing a dye kit &mdash; and it smells fruity, not like vinegar,&quot; Johnson suggests. &quot;PAAS egg coloring kits start at $1.50ish. And each Kool-Aid packet costs around $.20, and store brands cost around $.12. You can pick and choose which colors you want to do and purchase a handful.&quot;</p> <h2>9. Take Advantage of &quot;Free Dinner&quot; Deals at Your Supermarket</h2> <p>I'm not sure if this is common in your neck of the woods, but several of the supermarkets around me offer a free ham for Easter if you meet a certain purchase criteria within a specified window of time, which is usually something like X amount of dollars spent each week for X many weeks.</p> <p>Mike Collins, owner of the personal finance blog WealthyTurtle, loves to take advantage of this annual promotion.</p> <p>&quot;My number one tip to have a cheaper Easter is to get your main course for free,&quot; he says. &quot;As a family of five we never have any problem reaching the minimum spending requirement, so we always get the meat for free and just have to pay for the sides.&quot;</p> <h2>10. Host a Potluck Dinner</h2> <p>While Mike Collins is paying for the sides, you can absolve yourself from all that jazz by hosting an Easter potluck. Pop your free ham into the oven to heat up (it's likely already cooked), and let your friends and family brings all the trimmings.</p> <p>&quot;One of the best ways to save on Easter is to have a potluck with family and friends. That way, you're not stuck with all of the costs, and usually your guests won't mind contributing by bringing a side dish, appetizer, or paper goods like plates and napkins,&quot; says CouponPal's Erin Konrad. &quot;Not having to pay for all of the food and beverages also allows you to spend money on things like decorations, supplies for an Easter egg hunt, or party favors (if kids will be attending).&quot;</p> <p><em>Do you know more ways to have a cheaper Easter? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-easter">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/regifting-a-simple-how-to-guide">Regifting: A Simple How-To Guide</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-creative-ways-to-save-money-with-bulk-buying">6 Creative Ways to Save Money With Bulk Buying</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lower-your-credit-card-interest-rate-and-reduce-your-phone-bill-immediately-and-easily">Lower Your Credit Card Interest Rate and Reduce Your Phone Bill, Immediately and Easily</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-to-save-hundreds-or-even-thousands-of-dollars-without-thinking">3 Ways to Save Hundreds (or Even Thousands) of Dollars Without Thinking</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/pet-peeves-part-1-couture-critters-are-expensive">Pet Peeves Part 1: Couture Critters Are Expensive!</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks Budgeting baskets candy Easter Food Holidays Tue, 31 Mar 2015 17:00:09 +0000 Mikey Rox 1360788 at http://www.wisebread.com 14 Cool Uses for a Blender http://www.wisebread.com/14-cool-uses-for-a-blender <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/14-cool-uses-for-a-blender" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother-daughter-blender-fruit-iStock_000038436464_Small.jpg" alt="mother and daughter using blender making smoothies" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Everyone buys a blender with the best of intentions. A homemade smoothie every morning for breakfast, and you'll be fit in no time &mdash; while saving money, too! A few months later, the blender lives in the back of a cabinet collecting dust, only to be dragged out for an occasional margarita. In fact, the blender can be used to make a surprising amount of things. So it's time to pull out this often forgotten piece of kitchen equipment and see what it can really do.</p> <h2>1. Flour</h2> <p>It might sound crazy, but you can have <a href="http://naturalthrifty.com/how-to-mill-flour.html">freshly milled flour</a> without any real effort or fancy equipment. Just put a couple cups of wheat berries in your blender and let it go. Sift and repeat, and you're done. This method also works great with oats. Instead of buying both rolled oats and oat flour, just keep the whole version around and grind some up when you need it.</p> <h2>2. Almond Milk</h2> <p>If you're an almond milk drinker, then making fresh, <a href="http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-almond-milk-at-home-cooking-lessons-from-the-kitchn-189996">homemade almond milk</a> will blow you away. Soak almonds overnight in water and then blend well. Strain, and you have deliciously nutty milk. The fresh version will only last a few days in the fridge, so only make what you plan to use. Since the process is so easy, you're sure to be whipping some up on the regular anyway. Try <a href="http://www.alwaysorderdessert.com/2011/10/creamy-chocolate-hazelnut-milk-dairy.html">adding sweet flavors</a> like vanilla and using different kinds of nuts.</p> <h2>3. Compost</h2> <p>Composting is something many people want to do, but don't have the room or the patience to make it happen. If you have a patch of green at home but don't want to turn compost or keep a bin inside, you can <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5994471/blend-your-old-food-scraps-for-instant-compost">make instant &quot;compost&quot;</a> with your blender. Just take your soft food scraps and blend them up, making the leftovers very easy to break down. This is also a great method if you do have an indoor bin, since it will save space and convert to true compost much faster.</p> <h2>4. Juice</h2> <p>If space is at a premium in your kitchen, owning a big juicer might not be an option. Luckily, you can use your <a href="http://www.livestrong.com/article/504511-how-to-use-a-blender-as-a-juicer/">blender as a juicer</a>. Cut up fruit and vegetables, add to the blender with water, and blend well. Strain to your liking (you can leave some pulp this way), and enjoy. Be sure to use your leftover fruit pulp for composting!</p> <h2>5. Body Scrub</h2> <p>Not only can you make delicious things to eat with your blender, you can <a href="http://petitelefant.com/how-to-make-your-own-citrus-scrub/">make a body scrub</a> that will make you feel pretty delicious, too. Combine all-natural olive oil, sea salt, and citrus for a refreshing and moisturizing scrub that takes less than five minutes to make. The scrub makes a great gift, too!</p> <h2>6. Powdered Sugar</h2> <p>How many times have you started to make a sweet treat, only to discover you don't have any powdered sugar? Unless you are a master cake baker, it's unlikely that you always keep the super fine sweetener around. Next time you're in a pinch, instead of running to the store, whip out your blender. It will magically turn your plain old sugar into fluffy, <a href="http://www.craftsy.com/blog/2013/12/how-to-make-confectioners-sugar-at-home">homemade powdered sugar</a> in mere minutes.</p> <h2>7. Soup</h2> <p>You probably already know that you can make soups with your blender, but did you know that you can use it to heat up and even &quot;cook&quot; soups? This trick requires a powerhouse blender like a Vitamix or Blendtec, both of which have high-speed blades that build up heat through friction. This way, you can <a href="http://blog.fatfreevegan.com/2009/02/quick-and-easy-potato-soup.html">warm and blend soup</a> at the same time. If you've got a regular old blender, then you can still puree soups and make <a href="http://www.onegreenplanet.org/vegan-food/how-to-make-yummy-raw-blender-soups-with-recipes/">raw soups</a> without dirtying a pot or using the stove.</p> <h2>8. Nut Butter</h2> <p>Making your own nut butter is not only easy, it opens up a world of possibilities. Honey-cashew butter? Pistachio-chocolate butter? Yes, please. <a href="https://www.vitamix.com/Find-Recipes/P/E/Peanut-Butter">Homemade nut butters</a> can easily be made in a food processor or a blender. When using a blender, be sure to scrape the sides often and don't overwork the motor. All you need are some nuts and, depending on your mood, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-delicious-and-cheap-nut-butter-recipes-to-make-at-home">some delicious flavorings</a>.</p> <h2>9. Salad Dressing</h2> <p>The key to a superior salad is a homemade dressing, and whipping one up is that much easier when you use a blender. Easily pulverize ingredients like herbs and fresh garlic, or emulsify your oil and vinegar into a smooth, cohesive vinaigrette. A blender is especially handy for creamy dressings like a <a href="http://www.food.com/recipe/blender-caesar-salad-dressing-156595">homemade ceasar salad</a>.</p> <h2>10. Lotion</h2> <p>Treat yourself to some all-natural skincare using, you guessed it, your blender. Combining beeswax, essential oils, vitamin E, and almond or grapeseed oil, this <a href="http://www.diynatural.com/homemade-lotion/">homemade body cream</a> is luxurious and moisturizing. Using a blender, it takes only minutes to make and extra cream can be stored in the fridge for a few weeks.</p> <h2>11. Applesauce</h2> <p>If you or your kids love applesauce, you have to try making your own fresh sauce at home. Instead of cooking the apples on the stove and then pushing them through a food mill, just throw cut-up, fresh apples along with water and a little flavoring into your blender. You'll be rewarded with <a href="http://www.inhabitots.com/how-to-make-a-cup-of-simple-organic-applesauce-in-your-blender">fresh applesauce</a> that's healthy and so quick and easy to make.</p> <h2>12. Fresh Butter</h2> <p>Did you know that all you need to <a href="http://www.foodrenegade.com/how-to-make-butter/">make fresh butter</a> at home is a blender and some cream? Blend your cream for a few minutes until you can see the butter solids separating. Let it sit so the butter can float to the top, and then strain off the buttermilk (and save for later use). Blend once more with cold water to wash, strain, and add salt if desired. Add roasted garlic, herbs, or spices to make a flavorful spread.</p> <h2>13. Pancakes and Muffins</h2> <p>The next time you're making pancakes or muffins, consider mixing with a blender. The batter will come together easier and be very well mixed, plus you'll have a handy pitcher for pouring. This is especially useful when making pancakes. Some recipes even call for you to use a blender, like these <a href="http://www.runningwithspoons.com/2014/06/24/banana-oat-greek-yogurt-muffins/">oat muffins</a> or these <a href="http://savorysweetlife.com/2012/01/buttermilk-pancakes/">buttermilk pancakes</a>.</p> <h2>14. Lamp</h2> <p>Have you given up on putting your blender to good use in the kitchen? Why not turn it into <a href="http://vault.sierraclub.org/sierra/201103/repurpose/default.aspx?_ga=1.48703142.1626506539.1425337189">a blender lamp</a>? With some careful disassembly and a few extra parts, you can recycle your appliance into a unique light. It's a great way to use a broken blender, too.</p> <p><em>What do you use your blender for?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/laurel-randolph">Laurel Randolph</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-cool-uses-for-a-blender">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-creative-delicious-things-you-can-make-in-a-blender">15 Creative, Delicious Things You Can Make in a Blender</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-office-potluck-dishes-everyone-loves">20 Office Potluck Dishes Everyone Loves</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tasty-treats-to-make-with-mulberries">Tasty Treats to Make With Mulberries</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-good-food-goes-bad-part-ii-tortillas-and-tortilla-chips">When Good Food Goes Bad, Part II: Tortillas and Tortilla Chips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-guaranteed-easiest-way-to-make-your-own-pickles">The Guaranteed Easiest Way to Make Your Own Pickles</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink General Tips blender Food Homemade recipes Thu, 19 Mar 2015 17:00:05 +0000 Laurel Randolph 1336751 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Unexpected Ways Cheaper Gas Is Boosting Your Pocketbook http://www.wisebread.com/8-unexpected-ways-cheaper-gas-is-boosting-your-pocketbook <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-unexpected-ways-cheaper-gas-is-boosting-your-pocketbook" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman-pumping-gas-Dollarphotoclub_72716583.jpg" alt="woman pumping gas" title="woman pumping gas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>One of the greatest gifts of this holiday season has been the low price of gasoline. With prices well below $3 across much of the country, drivers haven't filled their tanks for so little in years.</p> <p>The basic benefit of lower gas prices is obvious: It's money that you can invest or spend elsewhere.</p> <p>But there are some surprising other financial benefits as well. Here are eight unexpected ways that cheap gas is helping your wallet or pocketbook.</p> <h2>1. Food Could Get Cheaper</h2> <p>Most grocery stores ship their items via truck. So if delivery companies are paying less for gas, those savings could be passed on to consumers. The Department of Labor reports that <a href="http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cpi.nr0.htm">food prices have risen</a> a monthly average of .25% over the last 12 months. But food went up just 0.1% in October, perhaps as a result of cheaper transport costs.</p> <h2>2. Restaurant Stocks Are Rising in Value</h2> <p>People are spending less on gas, so they are likely to have more discretionary income. Thus, families are more likely to go out to eat. In fact, spending on restaurants and bars rose nearly 1% in October, according to the Department of Commerce. DineEquity, which owns IHOP and Applebee's, has been trading near its 52-week high. The same goes for Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden, Longhorn, and other popular eateries. The Dow Jones U.S. Restaurant &amp; Bars Index rose more than 5% in November.</p> <h2>3. You're Spending More on Fun Instead of Just Necessities</h2> <p>With a little extra money in their pockets, Americans are spending more on things they enjoy doing. The U.S. Commerce Department said that in October, sales of sporting goods and <a href="http://online.wsj.com/articles/u-s-retail-sales-rose-0-3-in-october-1415971907">items for hobbies rose 1.2%</a> &mdash; higher than any other brick-and-mortar retail category.</p> <h2>4. You Can Get More Car for Your Money</h2> <p>If you've got a big family or a lot of stuff to haul, you may be in need of a bigger vehicle. With gas prices low, the operating cost of that bigger car may have fallen to reasonable levels. In fact, the Federal Reserve said that it has recently seen an <a href="http://www.federalreserve.gov/monetarypolicy/beigebook/beigebook201412.htm">increase in sales of SUVs</a> and light trucks in some parts of the country. (Be smart, however. Gas prices may not be this low forever, and it always makes sense to drive the most fuel-efficient vehicle you can.)</p> <h2>5. Getting Clean Is Less Expensive</h2> <p>If you like to take a hot shower every day &mdash; and let's hope you do &mdash; you may find it will cost less to heat your water. And if the price of oil stays low, don't be surprised to see lower prices for shampoo, which has petroleum-based ingredients. Same goes for the shaving cream, toothpaste, and deodorant, and lots of other products.</p> <h2>6. Home Improvements Could Cost Less</h2> <p>Think about all the things used to construct your home that are made with petroleum. Paint is a big one, along with nylon carpeting, upholstery, caulking, plastic piping, and parts of your dishwasher, and refrigerator. Even the toolbox might cost less if it is made out of plastic.</p> <h2>7. Your Sport or Concert Tickets May Be More Valuable</h2> <p>Low gas prices could allow some sport or music fans to travel farther for their next event. Organizers of upcoming college bowl games, for instance, have indicated that fans will be more likely to go on road trips to attend. Higher attendance creates ticket scarcity, which is great for those who may have tickets they are looking to sell.</p> <h2>8. Job Opportunities Broaden</h2> <p>When gas prices are high, you may not be so eager to take that sales job with customers spanning a four-state area. Similarly, you might turn down that offer for the great job in a town 50 miles away. Lower gas prices expand the number of jobs you might be willing to consider, because the cost-benefit equation shifts in your favor.</p> <p><em>Have you noticed lower gas prices helping your budget? Tell us how in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-unexpected-ways-cheaper-gas-is-boosting-your-pocketbook">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tips-for-eating-out-cheaply">Tips For Eating Out Cheaply</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/21-things-that-young-adults-absolutely-need-to-know-about-money">21 Things That Young Adults Absolutely Need to Know About Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-things-everyone-should-be-saving-for">The 10 Things Everyone Should Be Saving For</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-personal-finance-rules-you-should-be-breaking">15 Personal Finance Rules You Should Be Breaking</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-make-yourself-save-more-money">12 Ways to Make Yourself Save More Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance as prices Food home improvements restaurants saving Fri, 02 Jan 2015 14:00:09 +0000 Tim Lemke 1275170 at http://www.wisebread.com People Who Love Christmas Do These 9 Things — Do You? http://www.wisebread.com/people-who-love-christmas-do-these-9-things-do-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/people-who-love-christmas-do-these-9-things-do-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man-decorating-christmas-tree-509894933-small.jpg" alt="man decorating christmas tree" title="man decorating christmas tree" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Christmas is in the air. Can you smell it? I can! I openly and unabashedly love Christmas. There's something about the way everything comes together &mdash; the middle of winter, the lights, the music, the food. I just love it.</p> <p>And how do I know I love it? Well these 9 signs are a good start.</p> <h2>1. Listen to Christmas Music Early and Often</h2> <p>There is nothing better than Christmas music. Not one single thing. I try to wait until December to listen to it, but some of my Christmas-freak friends listen to it all year round. I will say that nothing gets me into the holiday spirit better, even when I'm stressed or tired, than hearing the music I've heard since childhood.</p> <p>If you're not sure where to start, there are <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/evan-bailyn/the-top-20-christmas-songs_b_4459862.html">Christmas playlists</a> all over the Internet. Or you can go through your own music collection and make a playlist for every Christmas mood.</p> <h2>2. Have a Favorite Christmas Movie (or Three!)</h2> <p>I know people who love <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002F6BRE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B0002F6BRE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=D5J2O2ICVVD5EPRS">Elf</a>, people who watch <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000HT3PPG/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000HT3PPG&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=W5TIR2AQ6NMCHFKO">Miracle on 34th Street</a> every year, and people who swear by <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000HEWEJO/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000HEWEJO&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=YO4QHKB5LUP6SS4C">It's a Wonderful Life</a>. Very few people have the same favorite Christmas movie, but nearly everyone who loves the season has at least one flick they return to every year.</p> <h2>3. Decorate With Meaningful Things</h2> <p>It's easy to find cheap Christmas decorations at Target or Walmart, and everyone needs some of these to fill in the gaps. But people who love Christmas save the best spots for decorations that mean something to them. Whether you're hanging the stockings your mother made you or ornaments celebrating the birth of a child, meaningful decorations help you remember to focus on family and on caring for one another, rather than on aspects of the season that make it more stressful.</p> <h2>4. Have the Perfect White Elephant Gift</h2> <p>No matter who you are or what you do, there's almost always some sort of white elephant gift exchange to attend. These can be as fun or as boring as you make them, and people who love Christmas often spend quite a bit of time and energy searching for the perfect terrible gift to add hilarity to these events. There's something fun and oh-so-Christmassy about bringing the gift that everyone (or no one!) wants. I tend to keep my eyes open year round, but I also know people who haunt thrift stores in the weeks leading up to an exchange, just waiting for someone to donate the perfect gift.</p> <h2>5. Use an Advent Calendar to Count Down the Days</h2> <p>One of the best parts of Christmas is that we look forward to it for so long. We know it's coming, and we get the joy of anticipation as we wait for the big day. When people really love this aspect of Christmas, they often buy an Advent calendar to enhance their sense of waiting. And there are so many options for these! You can get one with a piece of chocolate for each day, or you can make one with an ornament you can add to your tree each day, or you can get one <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00J4S6U1W/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00J4S6U1W&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=ZQHQOAIGBHZL476N">featuring Lego</a>. This year, I'm planning to wrap a Christmas book for my kids to open every day in December.</p> <h2>6. Buy Gifts With Meaning</h2> <p>Whether you like it or not, one of the important parts of Christmas, for most people, is giving and receiving gifts. While trying to get something for everyone and making sure you balance your spending can be hard, many people love Christmas because they get to buy meaningful gifts for everyone.</p> <h2>7. Bake a Favorite Christmas Treat</h2> <p>It's easy to get overwhelmed with cookies, cakes, appetizers, and everything else around the holidays. Many Christmas-lovers, though, have one or two favorite Christmas treats that they bake for themselves and their loved ones during the season. There's something about having that one cookie, the one your mom made for you when you were little, that can make or break the Christmas season.</p> <h2>8. Plan Some Down Time Around the Holiday</h2> <p>When people don't like Christmas, it's often because there's so much to do and so much stress around the holiday. You have to go to parties, get presents, put up decorations, navigate unhealthy food&hellip; It's no wonder people get tired out way before the big day even comes.</p> <p>For this reason, people who adore Christmas often plan down time into the season. Some families go away for a weekend. Others limit their activities to a certain number per week. Do whatever works for you, but you'll enjoy the season more if you're not running around like a crazy person the entire time.</p> <h2>9. Get in Touch With the People They Care About</h2> <p>If you don't want to call your family, for whatever reason, it's okay. You don't have to be with them, or even talk to them, on Christmas. But people who love Christmas do try to get in touch with someone they care about. This can be a friend or a neighbor &mdash; anybody, really, with whom you'd like to share a few moments of this special time of year.</p> <p><em>Do you love Christmas? What do you do to make it special?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/people-who-love-christmas-do-these-9-things-do-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-the-craziest-christmas-fanatics-do">7 Things the Craziest Christmas Fanatics Do</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-have-a-no-spend-holiday-season">12 Ways to Have a No-Spend Holiday Season</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-overpriced-holiday-gifts-you-should-skip">7 Overpriced Holiday Gifts You Should Skip</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-holiday-gifts-that-arent-worth-the-money">13 Holiday Gifts That Aren&#039;t Worth the Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-january-is-the-right-time-to-start-planning-for-christmas">6 Reasons January Is the Right Time to Start Planning for Christmas</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Entertainment Christmas entertaining Food gifts Holidays traditions Fri, 05 Dec 2014 16:00:09 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1264074 at http://www.wisebread.com 20 Easy Ways to Stretch Your Grocery Dollars http://www.wisebread.com/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/grocery-shopping-178703032-small.jpg" alt="grocery shopping" title="grocery shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>A job loss, a big audacious savings goal, or a shiny new set of braces. Whatever the cause, most of us have had to sit down and figure out how to feed our families for less money at one point or another. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-grocery-shop-for-five-on-100-a-week?ref=seealso">How to Grocery Shop for Five on $100 a Week</a>)</p> <p>Here are 20 strategies for stretching your grocery budget without skimping on nutrition or enjoyment</p> <h2>1. Eat Less</h2> <p>Sixty percent of Americans admit to <a href="http://www.pbs.org/thisemotionallife/blogs/overeating-understanding-and-taking-back-control">eating more than is good for them</a>. When you're watching your pennies, one of the easiest ways to spend less on groceries is to buy less and eat less. Start by cutting way back on snacks, the culprit behind most overeating and among the most expensive grocery items.</p> <h2>2. Focus on Value Foods</h2> <p>It's fun to cook with a wide variety of ingredients, but sticking to the foods with the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-foods-with-the-most-bang-for-your-buck">most nutrition per dollar</a> can get you through a lean patch. Need more options? These 50 healthy foods can be had for <a href="http://www.aarp.org/money/budgeting-saving/info-11-2009/foods_under_a_dollar_per_pound.2.html">under a buck a pound</a>.</p> <h2>3. Buy in Bulk</h2> <p>Whether it's dividing up large Costco meat packages or hauling 50-pound bags of grain from a feed store, there are lots of ways to save by bulk buying. The important thing is to safeguard against waste by making sure you have a safe place to store it and that you will use the entire purchase before it goes bad.</p> <h2>4. Do the Work</h2> <p>You can <a href="http://www.thefrugalgirl.com/2010/08/wednesday-baking-does-homemade-bread-save-money/">make your own bread</a> for half the price of a low-end store-bought loaf, and end up with a more delicious and nutritious product. Pre-chopped and washed veggies cost a premium and don't stay fresh as long. Roll up your sleeves and do your own prep work to save.</p> <h2>5. Substitute</h2> <p>The recipe may call for pine nuts, but pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds are way cheaper. Learn about more <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-recipe-substitutions-that-save-money-and-prevent-food-waste">low-cost ingredient substitution</a> ideas.</p> <h2>6. Stop Throwing Food Away</h2> <p>Since 40% of all food produced in the United States is <a href="http://foodshift.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/FoodWasteStatisticsandBibliography.pdf">thrown away</a>, eliminating waste is low-hanging fruit. At our house, we avoid waste by serving the kids small portions and seconds (or thirds) as needed, using tiny containers to save every last leftover, and incorporating those leftovers into other dishes. There are plenty <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/youre-wasting-13-of-the-food-you-buy-heres-how-to-stop">more ways to cut food waste</a>.</p> <h2>7. Drink Water</h2> <p>You know by now that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-reasons-to-stop-drinking-soda">soda is bad for you</a>, but you don't need juice either. If you don't like plain water, flavor it with a splash of juice instead of pouring whole glasses of juice. Not only does this save money, but it cuts calories too.</p> <h2>8. Try Batch Cooking</h2> <p>Assembly line cooking, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-time-and-money-with-a-monthly-assembly-or-bulk-cooking-weekend">once-a-month cooking</a>, whatever you want to call it, prepping food ahead and freezing it saves money by accommodating bulk purchases and helping you avoid high-priced instant meals when you're short of time.</p> <h2>9. Rinse Out the Container &mdash; Into the Pot</h2> <p>Whenever I empty a jar of tomatoes or a Tupperware of soup into a cooking pot, I put a little water in the container, shake, and empty it into the cooking pot, to make sure I'm not throwing away even a gram of food. The extra water cooks off.</p> <h2>10. Learn to Make Cheap Meat Delicious</h2> <p>Meat lovers don't have to buy T-bones to enjoy a hearty meal. <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-cheap-cuts-of-meat-taste-expensive">Osso buco, carnitas and hanger steak</a> are all delicious when done right.</p> <h2>11. Dilute It</h2> <p>Adding beans or rice really does <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dilutions-of-grandeur-stretch-your-food-at-every-meal">make a stew go farther</a>.</p> <h2>12. Make Your Own</h2> <p>Prepared foods are among the highest-margin items in the supermarket. If you've never tried it, you might be surprised how easy it is to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/35-grocery-items-you-should-make-at-home-and-5-to-buy">make your own guacamole, hummus, or even peanut butter</a>.</p> <h2>13. Make Your Own Instant Mixes</h2> <p>Another high-cost item is &quot;instant&quot; anything. Make <a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/making-your-own-homemade-oatmeal-packets-a-visual-guide-and-cost-analysis/">single-serve oatmeal packets</a>, <a href="http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/instant-pancake-mix-recipe.html">pancake mix</a>, or practically anything you use a mix for, and save.</p> <h2>14. Consider Markdowns</h2> <p>I kind of wish Safeway would rename its &quot;Clearance&quot; meat section, because it feels as if I'm buying used pot roast. Still, taking home items that are about to expire can save you 50% or more if you are able to use or freeze them right away.</p> <h2>15. Grow a Garden</h2> <p>Even if you <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/growing-my-own-food-in-my-apartment">only have a balcony</a>, you can grow enough food to reduce your spending. To realize savings, it's important to pay attention to <a href="http://msue.anr.msu.edu/news/can_a_vegetable_garden_save_you_money">how much you spend on a garden</a>. Focus on <a href="http://ready4itall.org/top-3-plants-that-will-save-you-the-most-money-on-groceries-when-grown-at-home/">plants that produce expensive items</a> to save the most.</p> <h2>16. If You're Getting a Pet, Get a Small One</h2> <p>It may seem crass to put a pound limit on love, but the fact is that feeding pets can strain a tight grocery budget. According to the ASPCA, a <a href="https://www.aspca.org/adopt/pet-care-costs">large dog costs about $235 a year</a> to feed; a little yapper only about $55. Better yet, get a fish, which you can feed for $20 a year or less.</p> <h2>17. Use a Full Discount Arsenal</h2> <p>Coupons, online deals, in-store offers, rebates &mdash; these tactics really work and can easily cut your grocery spending by 20% or more.</p> <h2>18. Switch Stores</h2> <p>Where you shop can make a big difference in what you spend for the same groceries. Changing from <a href="http://www.checkbook.org/interactive/spmkt/other/price.cfm">Safeway to Walmart</a> could save a family more than $1,600 a year. Explore your neighborhood &mdash; you may have a fresh produce market or a weekly farmer's market with even better prices than big box stores.</p> <h2>19. Return It</h2> <p>Your berries got moldy the day after you bought them? You picked up the wrong item and paid full price instead of the sale item you thought you were getting? Don't be afraid to stop by customer service the next time you visit; managers at good stores are happy to process the occasional refund.</p> <h2>20. Eat Your Garbage</h2> <p>My grandmother, born during the Depression, has a great anecdote. One garbage day, her husband looked out the window and asked why the other houses all had two trash bags out front, but they only had one.</p> <p>Grandma's answer: &quot;We eat our garbage!&quot;</p> <p>Grandma was stretching her husband's Navy paycheck as far as it would go, and one way she did that was by never letting a leftover go to waste. Every Thursday night, she'd throw every bit of this and that from the fridge into the crockpot for a weekly &quot;garbage stew.&quot; It was usually delicious, but even if she wanted to, she could never duplicate it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/thursday-night-soup-delicious-soup-from-leftovers?ref=seealso">Thursday Night Soup: Delicious Soup From Leftovers</a>)</p> <p>Another way of eating your garbage: Learn to prepare the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/waste-not-want-not-stop-throwing-away-your-food">vegetable trimmings</a> you've been throwing away.</p> <p><em>Any other ideas for saving on groceries? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping">The Best and Worst Times to Go Grocery Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-new-face-of-poverty-is-fat">The new face of poverty is fat</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-ways-you-can-cut-grocery-expenses-today">13 Ways You Can Cut Grocery Expenses Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-sort-of-small-kitchen-gadgets-that-equal-big-savings">4 Sort-of Small Kitchen Gadgets that Equal Big Savings!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-grocery-store-secrets-only-the-pros-know">10 Grocery Store Secrets Only the Pros Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Shopping Cooking Food food costs groceries Thu, 02 Oct 2014 15:00:06 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1226228 at http://www.wisebread.com A Supermarket Insider Reveals 5 Ways Your Grocer Is Trying to Upsell You http://www.wisebread.com/a-supermarket-insider-reveals-5-ways-your-grocer-is-trying-to-upsell-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/a-supermarket-insider-reveals-5-ways-your-grocer-is-trying-to-upsell-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/shopping-groceries-86527435-small.jpg" alt="grocery shopping" title="grocery shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your grocery store is not out to get you, explains Supermarket Guru Phil Lempert. &quot;Their mission is to make you very loyal as a shopper. They want to form a relationship,&quot; said Lempert, editor of insider grocery journal The Lempert Report and <a href="http://www.supermarketguru.com">SupermarketGuru.com</a>.</p> <p>That said, the grocery industry is a low-margin business, and the more stores can do to encourage customers to spend more, in the most profitable areas, the better. Brands, too, would like to influence your behavior. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-one-tool-that-assures-you-never-pay-too-much-for-groceries?ref=seealso">The One Tool That Ensures You Never Pay Too Much for Groceries</a>)</p> <p>So beware of these ways supermarkets and brands attempt to steer your cart &mdash; and your wallet.</p> <h2>1. The Fresh 'n' Fruity</h2> <p>&quot;One reason the produce department is in the front of the store is, it's like aromatherapy. Great colors and fragrances put you in a better mood, so when you're going through the store, you're moving more slowly; you might notice more products,&quot; Lempert said.</p> <h3>How to Evade It</h3> <p>Sticking to a list can help you avoid being influenced by attempted mood control. To avoid feeling deprived, Lempert advises drawing a limited number of blanks at the bottom of the page, so you can add two or three impulse buys &mdash; but no more than you can afford.</p> <h2>2. The Endcap Game</h2> <p>As you turn toward the next aisle, you see a towering display of identical cereal boxes. Beware! This may not be what you think it is. &quot;Most people think everything in that endcap is on sale. Only about half the time is it on sale,&quot; Lempert warns.</p> <h3>How to Evade It</h3> <p>&quot;Look carefully at the sign that's there,&quot; Lempert said. If it doesn't specifically show a discount, it's full price.</p> <h2>3. The Stock-Up Stickup</h2> <p>Buy one get one free, three for $5, or the per-ounce savings of the jumbo vat of ketchup &mdash; these can be traps if they lead you down the path of buying more than you can use before the expiration date.</p> <h3>How to Evade It</h3> <p>&quot;Make sure you buy something in an appropriate size to use,&quot; Lempert said. &quot;They might have 64 oz. tomato juice on sale. You have tomato juice occasionally. You might be better off buying the smaller cans, even though they're more expensive (per serving).&quot;</p> <p>On the other hand, if you are sure you'll use the larger volume in a timely manner, go ahead and grab the deal. BOGOs tend to be the largest discounts you'll see on most products. Lempert has one more caveat for stock-up-and-savers.</p> <p>&quot;Check the per-unit price. Just because it's in a bigger package doesn't mean it's cheaper. Because of operational efficiencies, you might find a 16 oz. can is cheaper on a per-unit basis than a 40 oz. can.&quot; If the factories are configured to pump out more 16 oz. cans, those may be the best deal after all.</p> <h2>4. The Scratch and Dent</h2> <p>&quot;A lot of stores have damaged packaged goods, usually by the meat department. Don't go for that,&quot; Lempert warned. &quot;When you have a dented can, you can easily grow bacteria in that can. If it's a damaged package, I don't care how cheap it is, from a food safety standpoint, I won't go near it.&quot;</p> <p>But feel free to pick up kitty litter from the scratch-and-dent bin. &quot;If it's a nonconsumable, sure,&quot; Lempert said.</p> <h2>5. Checkout Coupons</h2> <p>Those little coupons that print out next to the register? You may notice that they bear an uncanny resemblance to items you just bought. This is because brands want to target certain customers and encourage them to try their product next time.</p> <p>&quot;Let's say you're a Coca-Cola drinker. Pepsi wants to steal you, so they'll give you a high-value coupon to encourage you to switch to Pepsi. Or Coke doesn't want you to leave, so they'll give you a Coke coupon,&quot; Lempert said.</p> <p>These aren't necessarily insidious, and may even save you on things you want. But be aware, there's some psychological pressure being attempted here.</p> <h2>Saving Graces</h2> <p>Phil has a few more insider suggestions for saving at the super.</p> <h3>Try the House Specialty</h3> <p>One area where the store and shopper's interests align is the store brand. These products are often identical to name-brand products, sell for less money, and send more profit back to the store. So while the store may try to steer you to its house brand displays, it's not a trap.</p> <p>&quot;Remember that store brands always have a money back guarantee,&quot; Lempert said. &quot;Compare the ingredients and nutritional information on the store brand to the brand you normally buy. If they're identical, it's probably an identical product.&quot;</p> <h3>Join the Club</h3> <p>Lempert advises shoppers to tap every tool available to save: coupons, online programs, and store cards. Don't be paranoid about the fact that the cards and apps help the store compile data on your shopping habits.</p> <p>&quot;There are no secrets in today's world. Everybody knows everything about us,&quot; Lempert said.</p> <p>Well, at least now you also know a little bit more about the supermarket.</p> <p><em>Have you fallen for any of these upsell traps? Noticed any others? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-supermarket-insider-reveals-5-ways-your-grocer-is-trying-to-upsell-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/want-to-save-a-bundle-on-your-groceries-consider-you-local-asian-market">Save a Bundle on Your Groceries: Consider Your Local Asian Market</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unbearably-stupid-packaging">Dumbest packaging ever?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping">The Best and Worst Times to Go Grocery Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-creative-ways-to-save-money-with-bulk-buying">6 Creative Ways to Save Money With Bulk Buying</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-places-to-get-coupons-online">The Best Places to Get Coupons Online</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Food groceries market shopping supermarket Mon, 22 Sep 2014 11:00:03 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1216063 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Grocery Store Secrets Only the Pros Know http://www.wisebread.com/10-grocery-store-secrets-only-the-pros-know <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-grocery-store-secrets-only-the-pros-know" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man-grocery-shopping-92041915-small.jpg" alt="man grocery shopping" title="man grocery shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You've strolled down aisle after aisle, checked shelf after shelf. But some of these little-known grocery facts may surprise even the most grizzled grocery vet.</p> <h2>1. The Supermarket Is Not Your Best Bet for Fresh Food</h2> <p>Christina Major, creator of the Grocery Store Shopping Trip &mdash; which aims to help sufferers of Type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure &mdash; advocates for skipping the supermarket altogether when buying meats, fish, cheese, fruits, and vegetables. If you prefer freshness over frugality, that is. &quot;The grocery store can't be fresh &mdash; it's impossible, &quot;she says. &quot;The foods need to travel from farm to warehouse to truck, to store&hellip; and then wait for a stockperson to put it out. By the time you see a 'fresh' vegetable, it's already days, if not weeks, old.&quot; As an alternative, Major suggests picking up these perishables at your local farmer's market and butcher.</p> <h2>2. There May Be a 'Day-Old' Bread Store in Your Town</h2> <p>Bread is fairly expensive, but you can cut the cost by checking for markdowns in the bakery section of your grocery store on goods reaching their expiration date &mdash; or, better yet, by locating a &quot;day-old&quot; bread store in your area. Diane Lockard, a fellow <a href="https://www.mint.com/blog/how-to/5quick-kitchen-moves-that-cost-you-money-012012/">personal finance writer at Mint.com</a>, says that many towns have these kinds of stores (my hometown did), and she recently purchased a large amount of hot dog and hamburger buns at a big discount for a family reunion by using this tactic.</p> <h2>3. Your Grocery Store Has a Clearance Section</h2> <p>Jessica Fisher, author of the cookbook <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1558328432/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=1558328432&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=HF7FK37MPHISSG5T">Good Cheap Eats: Everyday Dinners and Fantastic Feasts for $10 or Less</a>, scoops up deals at her supermarket's clearance section. She says, &quot;There are fabulous markdowns on all kinds of things that are perfectly good &mdash; sometimes years from their sell-by date &mdash; that the store is discontinuing. I've saved tons of money buying gourmet and organic items &mdash; as well as organic produce &mdash; this way.&quot;&nbsp;</p> <h2>4. Nutritional Labels Are More Deceptive Than You Think</h2> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0071432396/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0071432396&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=3ZJOZPNAC5QG4X2Z">Cooking Aboard Your RV</a> author Janet Groene warns, &quot;Even avid label readers often miss the key point, which is portion size. To understand how many carbs, how much sodium and so on, look at how many servings the package provides. Most of us take pride in counting calories, not realizing that we're eating more than one portion.&quot;</p> <h2>5. Don't Shop Before 10 a.m. on the Day a Sale Starts</h2> <p>Home organizing blogger Ginny Underwood, advises waiting until mid-morning to do your shopping the day an advertised sale starts &mdash; especially on fresh protein items. &quot;Don't shop too early [that morning], as the butcher and fishmonger many not have the specials out in the display case until 10 a.m.,&quot; she says.</p> <h2>6. You're Probably Not Buying the Right Whole-Grain Foods</h2> <p>Immediately opt for packages with words like &quot;multi-grain,&quot; &quot;stone-ground,&quot; and &quot;whole wheat&quot;? Chris Weiler, author of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0989179605/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0989179605&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=HLQ6LU3PV7EO2WIZ">The 3/4 Rule: How to Eat as a Young Athlete</a>, explains that you may need to look closer. &quot;The higher the fiber content the more nutrient dense the food, he says. &quot;The 'Fiber Rule' is your secret weapon that enables you to know without a doubt whether or not the ingredients are really whole grains. Since the fiber content is the defining measure of a whole grain, don't even bother reading the marketing claims on the package; simply look at the fiber content.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-whole-grain-nutrition?ref=seealso">Getting Whole-Grain Nutrition</a>)</p> <p>Weiler notes that there is a connection between the ingredients list and the amount of fiber listed on the Nutrition Facts table. &quot;If the dietary fiber serving is 3 grams or above, you can be confident that you have a quality, whole-grain food source. The more grams of fiber per serving means that a higher percentage of the food you are eating comes from whole grains. If you are eating a piece of bread that has 2 grams of fiber per serving versus one that has 6 grams per serving, you know that the 2 gram slice of bread contains a low amount of whole grain ingredients and is therefore not as nutrient dense.&quot;</p> <h2>7. This &quot;Natural Ingredient&quot; in Your Food May Make You Gag</h2> <p>I know that gelatin isn't a PETA-friendly food since it consists of animal parts, like bones, but you might be surprised to learn that there may be a little bit of beaver in your diet as well. Melissa Garcia, owner of ConsumerQueen.com, recently enlightened me that the &quot;natural ingredients&quot; listed on labels may be more natural than we care to know. &quot;Castoreum, which is a secretion made by beavers from the anal glands, is used as a food additive in some of the products you buy,&quot; Garcia says. &quot;You might find it in some vanilla and strawberry flavored ice-cream and yogurt. Next time you pick one of these products up, check the label.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/im-eating-what-12-gross-things-in-your-food?ref=seealso">I'm Eating What? 12 Gross Things in Your Food</a>)</p> <h2>8. You Can Return Things to the Grocery Store</h2> <p>If you're not satisfied with a product you bought &mdash; maybe your milk is already spoiled when you opened it or your apple had a worm in it &mdash; you can take it back to the supermarket. Just like at the mall.</p> <h2>9. Yep, There's an App for That</h2> <p>You can save even more dough at the grocery store &mdash; on top of the sale savings, coupons, and other tactics you're already using &mdash; by downloading savings apps like Ibotta and Checkout 51, both of which are relatively new to the scene. Instead of coupon-like savings that are deducted from your bill, these apps reward you in cash when you buy items that the apps are promoting. I personally use these apps, and I've saved well over $25 since downloading that I can trade in for gift cards or have sent to my PayPal account in real money. You also can search your app store for supermarket-specific apps that also can help stack up the savings.</p> <h2>10. Compare Prices for Similar Items in Different Departments</h2> <p>This tip is kind of a wow-moment for me because I've honestly never thought about this. The amazing tip comes from Stephanie Nelson, founder of <a href="http://www.couponmom.com/">CouponMom.com</a>. &quot;Check different departments,&quot; Nelson says. &quot;A type of cheese sold in the deli department might cost more than a different brand of the same type of cheese sold in the dairy department. One brand of a type of nuts in the produce department might cost less than a different brand of the same type of nuts in the baking aisle.&quot; Seriously &mdash; Mind. Blown. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/market-clones-how-to-pay-drastically-less-for-pricey-products?ref=seealso">Market Clones: How to Pay Drastically Less for Pricey Products</a>)</p> <p><em>Do you have other supermarket secrets that you're willing to declassify? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-grocery-store-secrets-only-the-pros-know">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping">The Best and Worst Times to Go Grocery Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-grocery-shop-for-five-on-100-a-week">How to Grocery Shop for Five on $100 a Week</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars">20 Easy Ways to Stretch Your Grocery Dollars</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shopping-at-whole-foods-12-smart-ways-to-save">Shopping at Whole Foods: 12 Smart Ways to Save</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-ways-you-can-cut-grocery-expenses-today">13 Ways You Can Cut Grocery Expenses Today</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Shopping Food groceries grocery shopping grocery store Thu, 04 Sep 2014 17:00:04 +0000 Mikey Rox 1202832 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Eat Better Food For Less http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-eat-better-food-for-less <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-eat-better-food-for-less" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/grocery-shopping-478469001-small.jpg" alt="grocery shopping" title="grocery shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-steps-to-make-sure-you-buy-the-right-house">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some awesome articles on eating better food for less, making big life decisions, and cheap baby essentials under $30.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.freetopursue.com/blog/2014/6/20/shop-like-the-french">Shop Like the French. You'll Eat Better Food For Less</a> &mdash; Shopping often and buying whole foods can help you eat better food for less. [Free to Pursue]</p> <p><a href="http://color-me-frugal.com/making-big-life-decisions-regret-test/">Making Big Life Decisions: The Regret Test</a> &mdash; When you are making a decision about what to do, think about which you would regret more: doing what you are thinking about doing or not doing what you are considering doing. [Color Me Frugal]</p> <p><a href="http://farnoosh.tv/money-musings-from-mommyhood-week-8-cheap-baby-essentials-under-30/">Money Musings From Mommyhood, Week 8: Cheap Baby Essentials Under $30</a> &mdash; A wipe warmer and multi-use pads are just a couple cheap baby essentials any new parent should consider investing in. [Farnoosh]</p> <p><a href="http://www.takeasmartstep.com/financial-success/?hvid=5E2pCy">Warning: Two Factors Stopping Your Financial Success</a> &mdash; Are you having trouble being financially successful? Your mindset may be the cause of your difficulties. [Take a Smart Step]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyplansos.com/10-ways-we-pay-attention-to-money-mpsos155/">10 Ways We Pay Attention to Money</a> &mdash; Take the time to balance your bank accounts monthly and reassess your emergency fund balances annually. [MoneyPlan SOS]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.mightybargainhunter.com/used-washer-budget-time/">Want a Used Washer? Budget Some Time</a> &mdash; If you are thinking about buying a used washer, start looking long before you will actually need it. [Mighty Bargain Hunter]</p> <p><a href="http://www.joetaxpayer.com/tips-for-financing-your-first-car/">Tips for Financing Your First Car</a> &mdash; When financing a car, stay away from dealer financing and read the fine print. [Joe Taxpayer]</p> <p><a href="http://www.miss-thrifty.co.uk/2014/06/26/four-tips-for-glamping-on-a-budget/">Four Tips for Glamping on a Budget</a> &mdash; To glamp on a budget, cook from scratch instead of eating out or buying ready made food. [Miss Thrifty Blog]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/the-5-best-toddler-car-seats">The 5 Best Toddler Carseats</a> &mdash; Are you in the market for a carseat for your toddler? Check out the Clek Oobr Booster Car Seat. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Why-Important-Take-Risks-35261852">56 Ways to Be a Risk Taker Today</a> &mdash; Signing up for a class and doing a DIY are just a couple ways you can take a risk today. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-eat-better-food-for-less">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping">The Best and Worst Times to Go Grocery Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/hunt-fish-money-food">Is hunting/fishing a good way to feed your family?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-cool-uses-for-a-blender">14 Cool Uses for a Blender</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/concession-stand-treats-a-license-to-print-money">Concession stand treats – a license to print money.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-great-meals-with-your-car-engine-the-heat-is-on">Cooking great meals with your car engine. The heat is on.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink best money tips better eat Food less Fri, 29 Aug 2014 19:00:05 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1195553 at http://www.wisebread.com The 12 Most Dangerous Foods You're Buying http://www.wisebread.com/the-12-most-dangerous-foods-youre-buying <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-12-most-dangerous-foods-youre-buying" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/eating-hot-dog-173299216-small.jpg" alt="man eating hot dog" title="man eating hot dog" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>True fact: Some of the most popular foods are simply unhealthy and pose higher risks of illness. Also true? Many of those unhealthy foods are in your kitchen right now. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-food-additives-youre-probably-eating-every-day-and-what-they-do?ref=seealso">11 Food Additives You're Probably Eating Everyday</a>)</p> <p>Steer clear of these 12 dangerous foods you're buying.</p> <h2>1. 5-Hour Energy and Other Energy Drinks</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/energy%20drink.jpg" /></p> <p>Many studies have concluded that massive amounts of caffeine paired with other synthetic substances such as aspartame are to blame for the huge <a href="http://www.fda.gov/downloads/AboutFDA/CentersOffices/OfficeofFoods/CFSAN/CFSANFOIAElectronicReadingRoom/UCM328270.pdf">health risks</a> associate with this afternoon booster, including high blood pressure, heart attack, seizure, and death.</p> <h2>2. Soda Pop</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/coke%20bottle.jpg" /></p> <p>This big part of everyday consumption for many, especially children, is dangerous <a href="http://www.rodalenews.com/facts-about-soda?page=1">on many fronts</a>. Soda not only erodes tooth enamel, but common soda pop ingredients can increase risk for diabetes, fatty liver, high blood pressure, cancer, nerve disorders, hormonal imbalances, and more.</p> <h2>3. Microwave Popcorn</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/microwave%20popcorn.jpg" /></p> <p>That faux-buttery flavor of microwave popcorn is definitely fake, but that is not where all the health risks originate. It's the chemicals <a href="http://blog.aarp.org/2012/03/22/microwave-popcorns-health-problem-its-the-bag-not-the-corn/">lining the microwaveable bag</a>, such as POOA, that are cause for concern. Not only can these chemicals cause cancer in adults, but they can also make children's vaccines less effective.</p> <h2>4. Caffeine Pills</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/coffee-pills-480539261-small.jpg" /></p> <p>As with 5-Hour Energy, too much caffeine is not as unhealthy in the short term as it is in the long term. For example, consumption of too much caffeine in adolescents <a href="http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140204111804.htm">can lead to drug use</a> later in life.</p> <h2>5. Margarine</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/margarine-493378047-small.jpg" /></p> <p>The truth emerged only recently after years of buying margarine that it does not lower your cholesterol, nor is it healthier than natural butter. In fact, <a href="http://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/HEALTHbeat_062106.htm">margarine dramatically increases LDL</a> levels. Time to go back to using real butter, olive oil, or grapeseed oil.</p> <h2>6. Aspartame</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/aspartame-180448500-small.jpg" /></p> <p>The negative buzz on artificial sweeteners only seems to persist, especially in the case of aspartame. In addition to low-level <a href="http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/dailys/03/jan03/012203/02p-0317_emc-000199.txt">side effects like headaches</a>, long-term consumption of aspartame can <a href="http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancercauses/othercarcinogens/athome/aspartame">possibly cause cancer</a> in both adults and prenatal children.</p> <h2>7. Food Dyes</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/food-dyes-136361711-small.jpg" /></p> <p>While laws now require most manufacturers to categorize dyed foods as &quot;adulterated,&quot; and places like Trader Joe's have promised to only use natural coloring (i.e. beets and greens), dye is still a problem. Three regularly used dyes can cause cancer, and four others can cause <a href="http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2010/07/popular-food-dyes-linked-to-cancer-adhd-and-allergies/#.U-F-zIBdVz0">serious allergic reactions</a>.</p> <h2>8. Alfalfa Sprouts</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/alfalfa-sprouts-184885116-small_0.jpg" /></p> <p>Alfalfa and other types of sprouts can be very difficult to clean and are generally eaten raw. This can lead to contracting really bad bacteria such as <a href="http://www.foodsafety.gov/keep/types/fruits/sprouts.html">salmonella, listeria, and E. coli</a>. Children, elderly, and those with weak immune systems should avoid eating raw sprouts.</p> <h2>9. Cassava</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/casava%20root.jpg" /></p> <p>The cassava root, also known as tapioca, is in a lot more foods than you may think. It can be <a href="http://content.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1967235_1967238_1967250,00.html">dangerous if prepared incorrectly</a>, activating its traces of deadly cyanide. Also? If you are allergic to latex, you may be allergic to cassava.</p> <h2>10. Hot Dogs</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/hot-dog-474196549-small.jpg" /></p> <p>This is a tough one to hear, because America loves frankfurters. While processed meats are already risky, the additive sodium nitrate pushes hot dogs into <a href="http://www.pcrm.org/health/health-topics/dropthedog">cancer danger</a>. In addition, hot dogs cause 17% of food-related asphyxiations among children under 10 years.</p> <h2>11. Raw Honey</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/raw-honey-493248645-small.jpg" /></p> <p>Despite the benefits many raw food and homeopathic fans may tout, raw honey contains the legitimately <a href="http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/3760356.stm">harmful toxin grayanotoxin I</a>, which can cause nausea, vomiting, low blood pressure, and fainting.</p> <h2>12. Ground Turkey</h2> <p><img width="605" height="340" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5123/ground%20turkey.jpg" /></p> <p>Ground turkey, while a sound alternative to beef and pork, has its downside too. Turkey tends to be the <a href="http://www.menshealth.com/mhlists/foodborne_illness/Ground_Turkey.php">poultry with the most bacteria</a> &ndash;&ndash; including listeria, salmonella, and E. coli. The only way to combat gross bugs is to buy organic (to avoid antibiotic-resistant salmonella) and always cook turkey to 180&deg;F (to kill off all bacteria).</p> <p><em>Any other dangerous foods to watch for? Please warn us in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-meadows">Amanda Meadows</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-12-most-dangerous-foods-youre-buying">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-10"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/peanut-butter-the-poor-man-s-protein">Peanut Butter: The Poor Man’s Protein</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/healthy-frugal-eating">Healthy, frugal eating</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-new-face-of-poverty-is-fat">The new face of poverty is fat</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/so-you-think-youre-a-carnivore">So, You Think You&#039;re a Carnivore?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/move-over-weight-watchers-the-new-pyramid-is-here">Move Over Weight Watchers, the New Pyramid is Here!</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Health and Beauty dangerous food Food poison unhealthful food Thu, 21 Aug 2014 11:00:03 +0000 Amanda Meadows 1190087 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Steps to Grocery Savings Without Double Coupons http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-steps-to-grocery-savings-without-double-coupons <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-steps-to-grocery-savings-without-double-coupons" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/grocery-shopping-134205951-small.jpg" alt="grocery shopping" title="grocery shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some fantastic articles on grocery savings without double coupons, things that annoy hiring managers, and coming to grips with paying your rent on time.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.pocketyourdollars.com/2014/08/6-steps-to-saving-without-double-coupons/">6 Steps to Grocery Savings Without Double Coupons</a> &mdash; You can save at the grocery store without double coupons by comparing what you purchase and tracking sale prices. [Pocket Your Dollars]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/What-Annoys-Hiring-Managers-34912002">9 Things That Really Annoy Hiring Managers</a> &mdash; Being too persistant can really annoy hiring managers. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyqanda.com/coming-grips-paying-rent-time-universal-credit/">Coming to Grips With Paying Your Rent On Time</a> &mdash; To make sure you pay your rent on time, budget rent as a priority and make cut backs where possible. [Money Q&amp;A]</p> <p><a href="http://couponpal.com/blog/5-times-its-worth-booking-a-hotel-while-backpacking">5 Times It's Worth Booking a Hotel While Backpacking</a> &mdash; If you are backpacking and become concerned about your safety, it is probably worth it to book a hotel. [CouponPal]</p> <p><a href="http://shopmyclosetproject.com/how-to-dress-for-the-summer-heat-for-less/">How to Dress Cheaply for the Rest of Summer</a> &mdash; Rocking cotton and linen and remembering that dresses are your friend can help you dress cheaply for the rest of summer. [The Shop My Closet Project]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.creditsesame.com/blog/10-things-need-fix-to-slow-down-the-march-of-identity-theft/">10 Things We Need to Fix to Slow Down the March of Identity Theft</a> &mdash; In order to slow down identity theft, consumer apathy and security must be dealt with. [Credit Sesame Blog]</p> <p><a href="http://commonsensemillennial.com/do-what-you-love/">Ready to Do What You Love and Find Your Ideal Career?</a> &mdash; Teaching yourself something new and establishing a side hustle can help you find your ideal career. [Common Sense Millennial]</p> <p><a href="http://www.moneytalksnews.com/2014/08/14/are-you-driving-a-lemon/">Are You Driving a Lemon?</a> &mdash; If your car is a lemon, contact the manufacturer as well as the dealer to report any problems with your car. [Money Talks News]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/6-tips-on-how-to-act-on-the-sidelines-of-your-child-s-sporting-event">6 Tips on How to Act on the Sidelines of Your Child&rsquo;s Sporting Event</a> &mdash; It is important to be positive and not yell at the coach when attending your child's sporting event. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/law-mandates-instate-tuition-vets-public-colleges.html">New Law Mandates In-State Tuition for Vets Studying at All Public Colleges Starting Next Year</a> &mdash; Starting next year, vets will pay in state tuition fees at all colleges, even if they attend college in another state. [Bargaineering]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-steps-to-grocery-savings-without-double-coupons">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-11"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-supermarket-insider-reveals-5-ways-your-grocer-is-trying-to-upsell-you">A Supermarket Insider Reveals 5 Ways Your Grocer Is Trying to Upsell You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping">The Best and Worst Times to Go Grocery Shopping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars">20 Easy Ways to Stretch Your Grocery Dollars</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/want-to-save-a-bundle-on-your-groceries-consider-you-local-asian-market">Save a Bundle on Your Groceries: Consider Your Local Asian Market</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sure-savings-at-the-supermarket-how-to-save-25-on-9-staple-items">Sure Savings at the Supermarket</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Shopping best money tips coupons Food grocery market supermarket Mon, 18 Aug 2014 19:00:05 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1185498 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: The Cheap Eats Edition http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-the-cheap-eats-edition <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-the-cheap-eats-edition" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/eating-iStock_000009969295Small_0.jpg" alt="eating" title="eating" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="142" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some of the best articles from around the web on ways to keep your food expenses low.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://andthenwesaved.com/cheap-and-easy-food-to-make/">98 Cheap and Easy Foods to Make Under 5 Bucks!</a> &mdash; Did you know you can make breakfast burritos and French Onion soup for under $5? [And Then We Saved]</p> <p><a href="http://moneysavingmom.com/2012/03/how-to-afford-organic-foods-on-a-budget-2.html">How to Afford Organic Food on a Budget</a> &mdash; Afford organic food on a budget by planting a garden or joining a CSA. [Money Saving Mom]</p> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/Items-Dont-Expire-23603961">10 Grocery Items With a Long Shelf Life</a> &mdash; Vinegar can last indefinitely, while canned soda can last for about a year. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://money.usnews.com/money/the-frugal-shopper/2014/02/21/5-ways-to-save-money-at-restaurants">5 Ways to Save Money at Restaurants</a> &mdash; Taking advantage of happy hour deals can help you save the next time you dine out. [US News &amp; World Report]</p> <p><a href="http://www.frugalconfessions.com/food/helping-to-make-one-grocery-trip-last-two-weeks.php">Helping to Make One Grocery Trip Last Two Weeks</a> &mdash; To make one grocery trip last two weeks, cook with squash and make pesto. [Frugal Confessions]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.cashthechecks.com/save-money-at-the-grocery-store/">Save Money at the Grocery Store</a> &mdash; Planning out your meals for at least a week can help you save at the grocery store. [Cash The Checks]</p> <p><a href="http://lifehacker.com/what-should-and-shouldnt-i-microwave-1532532172">What Should and Shouldn't I Microwave?</a> &mdash; It's ok to microwave food in glass containers, but not aluminum foil. [Lifehacker]</p> <p><a href="http://financialhighway.com/money-saving-barbecue-menu-ideas/">Money-Saving Barbecue Menu Ideas</a> &mdash; Gourmet hotdogs are a frugal and fun barbecue menu option. [Financial Highway]</p> <p><a href="http://canadianfinanceblog.com/5-ways-to-enjoy-eating-out-without-spending-a-lot-on-food">5 Ways to Enjoy Eating Out Without Spending a Lot on Food</a> &mdash; To dine out frugally, go for a picnic or attend a local Farmer's Market. [Canadian Finance Blog]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/top-10-resources-for-delicious-and-nutritious-baby-food-recipes">Top 10 Resources for Delicious and Nutritious Baby Food</a> &mdash; Weelicious.com and NurtureBaby.com are a couple great places where you can find nutritious baby food. [Parenting Squad]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-the-cheap-eats-edition">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-12"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-savvy-strategies-to-ward-away-college-hunger-and-avoid-overspending">6 Savvy Strategies to Ward Away College Hunger and Avoid Overspending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-14-best-ways-to-cut-food-costs-while-traveling">The 14 Best Ways to Cut Food Costs While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/optical-illusions-that-make-you-fatter-and-your-wallet-lighter">Optical Illusions That Make You Fatter and Your Wallet Lighter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-case-for-caloric-labeling">The case for caloric labeling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tips-for-eating-out-cheaply">Tips For Eating Out Cheaply</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink best money tips cheap dining eating Food Thu, 17 Jul 2014 19:00:04 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1146781 at http://www.wisebread.com The Best and Worst Times to Go Grocery Shopping http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/shopping-blur-162586595-small.jpg" alt="shopping" title="shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="143" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We've all experienced this: You need two or three items for dinner tonight, so you make a quick run to the grocery store &mdash; only to walk out 40 minutes later with 10 items you hadn't planned on buying. What happened in that &quot;quick&quot; trip to the store? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-things-you-shouldnt-buy-at-the-grocery-store?ref=seealso">25 Things You Shouldn't Buy at the Grocery Store</a>)</p> <p>It turns out there are good and bad times to go grocery shopping, and your favorite store knows this. In fact, they are counting on you to make mistakes during your trip that will earn them more in profits. Grocery stores <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-you-pay-more-at-the-grocery-store-and-how-to-stop">know how people shop and spend</a>, so why not plan to be successful yourself? Picking the right time to go shopping, preparing yourself before you go, and keeping yourself focused while you are there are all keys to avoiding purchasing budget (and diet) busters.</p> <h2>Go at the Start of Your Store's &quot;Sales Week&quot;</h2> <p>The Internet is full of advice for the best day of the week to go grocery shopping. Most will tell you it is Wednesday, because stores start their sales for the next seven days on Wednesdays and some still honor the previous week's sales. Your mileage will vary, however. Many stores in my area, for example, start their sales on either Sunday or Monday, and they never have a day when both the previous week's and the upcoming week's sales are good.</p> <p>Your best option is to find out when your store starts running their sales and shop as close to that as possible for any deals that you want to snag. Don't forget: If you can't find an item on the shelf and it is on sale, get a raincheck at the customer service desk to ensure that you get that sale price when the item is in stock.</p> <h3>Ask Department Managers for Details</h3> <p>One good way to take advantage of store scheduling is to check in with the managers of each grocery department to find out what time and day they bring out merchandise to be clearanced out. The meat manager, for example, should be able to tell you that he marks down meat with a nearing expiration date on Tuesdays at 9 a.m. By shopping close to these times, you can get much of your grocery list accomplished at a fraction of retail pricing.</p> <h2>Go When Bins Are Freshly Stocked</h2> <p>To make sure your store isn't out of what you want, the best time of day to shop is mid-morning to early afternoon. Many stores stock their fresh produce during this time (non-perishables are usually stocked in the evenings when people are not walking through the aisles). This is a great time to find the freshest produce (and in my case, sometimes the only time to find coveted items like organic strawberries which always disappear fast in my town).</p> <p>The same principle can be applied to fresh meat and seafood departments, too.</p> <h2>Go Weeknight Evenings After Dinner</h2> <p>After dinner, say between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m., most people settle in for the evening, and few have the energy to tackle a big trip to the grocery store. The shelves and bins won't be quite as full as a weekday visit, but you'll have the store almost to yourself. Another advantage of going after dinner is that you won't go in hungry (see below), which often results in impulse spending.</p> <h2>Don't Go During &quot;Rush Hour&quot;</h2> <p>Grocery stores are busiest right after most people get off work. The aisles are packed, the lines are longer, and the frustrations can be plenty.</p> <h3>Weekend Afternoons Are the Worst</h3> <p>Even busier than weeknights right after work are weekends at the grocery store. Aisles are crowded and shelves are empty. I have noticed that Sundays around noon are the absolute worst time to go shopping in my town. It appears that a lot of people head to the store after their church service, and I have been known to turn around and go home if I realize what I've done by arriving at that time.</p> <p>Weekends are also the time when those wonderful people &mdash; product demonstrators &mdash; are most likely to be around, offering tasty samples of foods and treats you don't need. Suddenly, you've added crackers and dips, pretzel bread, and cookies to your cart because some lovely person offered you a free taste and a cents off coupon.</p> <h3>Weekend Mornings Are a Better Time</h3> <p>If your only time to grocery shop is on the weekends, like most of us, try to plan your trips for the morning. Become an early riser on Saturday or Sunday while everyone else is still lounging in their PJ's. You'll still find fresh produce, shelves that are stocked, and a quiet store. You'll get out quicker and with fewer impulse purchases in your cart.</p> <h2>Go After Making a List</h2> <p>Go in with a list (<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-eat-every-day-a-month-of-frugal-meals">based on a meal plan</a> for an entire week) and stick to it! If you shop without one, you are likely to buy too much of the foods you don't want or ones that will go bad before you've had time to eat them. You'll also keep yourself from having to make a quick trip one evening to grab one more item you need for dinner that night. Those after work &quot;quick trips&quot; are a bad idea (we'll talk more about those on down in this article).</p> <p>Need help organizing and using a list? There are hundreds of free apps and tools to help you manage your shopping. Some, like <a href="http://get.ziplist.com/">ZipList</a>, are integrated into recipes you can store for later. Others, like <a href="https://www.rememberthemilk.com/">RememberTheMilk</a>, are simple checklist tools with more than just shopping applications.</p> <h2>Never Go Hungry</h2> <p>This goes without saying, but before you step foot into the grocery store, prepare yourself to be successful at beating their marketing ploys. Eat a meal or a snack so you are not hungry. We've all found ourselves with a cart full of junk food because we made the mistake of hitting the store on the way home from work. When you're full, you are more likely to stick to your list. When you're hungry, you're more likely to buy <a href="http://www.theguardian.com/science/2011/nov/16/hunger-primes-brain-junk-food">high calorie junk food</a>.</p> <p>Another way to keep yourself from buying stuff you don't really need is to chew gum while shopping. If you should cross paths with a product demonstrator, and you have gum in your mouth, you are more likely to skip it. Those impulse buys are usually bad on the budget and possibly your waistline as well. Who knew there was so much value in a stick of gum?</p> <p><em>When's your favorite time to go to the grocery store? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/linsey-knerl">Linsey Knerl</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-and-worst-times-to-go-grocery-shopping">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-13"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-grocery-store-secrets-only-the-pros-know">10 Grocery Store Secrets Only the Pros Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-grocery-shop-for-five-on-100-a-week">How to Grocery Shop for Five on $100 a Week</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-easy-ways-to-stretch-your-grocery-dollars">20 Easy Ways to Stretch Your Grocery Dollars</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/shopping-at-whole-foods-12-smart-ways-to-save">Shopping at Whole Foods: 12 Smart Ways to Save</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-ways-you-can-cut-grocery-expenses-today">13 Ways You Can Cut Grocery Expenses Today</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink Shopping Food groceries grocery shopping meal plan Mon, 23 Jun 2014 15:00:08 +0000 Linsey Knerl 1145899 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Ways to Eat Well on the Cheap http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-eat-well-on-the-cheap <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-ways-to-eat-well-on-the-cheap" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/food-886291-small.jpg" alt="vegetables" title="vegetables" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some fantastic articles on eating well on the cheap, saving on airline fees, and the best and worst cities for savers.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://money.usnews.com/money/the-frugal-shopper/2014/05/20/4-ways-to-eat-well-on-the-cheap?int=a64b09">4 Ways to Eat Well on the Cheap</a> &mdash; Growing your own food can help you eat well on the cheap. [US News &amp; World Report]</p> <p><a href="http://www.fivecentnickel.com/2014/05/19/how-to-save-money-on-airline-fees/">How to save money on airline fees</a> &mdash; To save money on airline fees, decide what your priorities are when you fly. [Five Cent Nickel]</p> <p><a href="http://www.forbes.com/pictures/fkmm45jddm/the-best-cities-for-savers/?ss=personalfinance">The 10 Best And 8 Worst Cities For Savers</a> &mdash; Chicago is one of the best cities for savers, while Boston is one of the worst. [Forbes]</p> <p><a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/4-inexpensive-ways-to-enjoy-a-holiday-weekend/">4 Inexpensive Ways to Enjoy a Weekend Holiday</a> &mdash; Planning day trips or take on an interesting project at home are a couple inexpensive ways to enjoy a holiday weekend. [The Simple Dollar]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyontrees.ca/10-ways-save-big-day/">10 Ways to Save on Your Big Day</a> &mdash; Making your own wedding cake is just one way to save on your big day. [Money On Trees]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/How-Create-Wedding-Planning-Binder-23447489">The Organized Bride: Guide to Creating Your Own Wedding Planning Binder</a> &mdash; Having a three-ring binder with dividers can help brides create their own wedding planning binder. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.mainstreet.com/article/career/employment/4-myths-can-slow-your-career-momentum">4 Myths That Can Slow Your Career Momentum</a> &mdash; Thinking you will be rewarded consistently for the excellence of your job performance can slow your career momentum. [MainStreet]</p> <p><a href="http://www.threethriftyguys.com/2014/05/is-craigslist-really-free/">Is Craigslist Really Free?</a> &mdash; Did you know that people who post jobs on Craigslist in San Francisco pay $75 per job category? [Three Thrifty Guys]</p> <p><a href="http://www.getrichslowly.org/blog/2014/05/20/the-only-two-things-you-need-to-remember-about-funeral-costs/">The only two things you need to remember about funeral costs</a> &mdash; Remember that when it comes to funeral costs, get a fair price by only buying the goods and services you want. [Get Rich Slowly]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/swimming-safety-tips">Swimming Safety Tips</a> &mdash; Learning CPR can help keep your kids safe when they swim this summer. [Parenting Squad]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-ways-to-eat-well-on-the-cheap">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-14"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/optical-illusions-that-make-you-fatter-and-your-wallet-lighter">Optical Illusions That Make You Fatter and Your Wallet Lighter</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-most-unhealthiest-restaurants">10 Unhealthiest Restaurants</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ugggh-hic-i-justss-gotta-eat-somehicthing-my-top-10-homemade-drunk-snacks">Ugggh, (hic) I justss gotta eat some(hic)thing; my top 10 homemade drunk snacks.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-savvy-strategies-to-ward-away-college-hunger-and-avoid-overspending">6 Savvy Strategies to Ward Away College Hunger and Avoid Overspending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-14-best-ways-to-cut-food-costs-while-traveling">The 14 Best Ways to Cut Food Costs While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Food and Drink best money tips cheap eating Food Fri, 23 May 2014 09:00:27 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1140111 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Incredible-but-True Facts About Eating Fruits and Vegetables http://www.wisebread.com/10-incredible-but-true-facts-about-eating-fruits-and-vegetables <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-incredible-but-true-facts-about-eating-fruits-and-vegetables" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/food-97733656.jpg" alt="apple" title="apple" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Ever heard the term &quot;<a href="http://www.uhc.com/source4women/health_wellness_tools_resources/nutrition/rainbow_of_fruits_vegetables.htm">eat a rainbow</a>&quot;? Traditionally, nutritional guidelines have recommended that we eat a certain number of fruits and vegetables each day to maintain optimal health, but recently that strategy has changed. Realizing that our bodies need a variety of fruits and veggies, not just a certain amount, health experts now recommend we try to eat as many <em>colors</em> as possible during each meal.</p> <p>Kind of makes you wonder what else we may not know about the relationship between fruits, vegetables, and our health. Read on to discover some surprising facts! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-produce-workers-guide-to-choosing-fruits-and-vegetables?ref=seealso">The Produce Worker's Guide to Choosing Fruits and Vegetables</a>)</p> <h2>1. They Have All the Protein You Need</h2> <p>Did you know broccoli contains more protein per calorie than steak and one ounce of pumpkin seeds contains two grams more protein than the same quantity of ground beef? According to Dr. Scott Stoll,&nbsp;&quot;Multiple studies have shown that if you are meeting your caloric needs through plant-based nutrition, you will satisfy your body's <a href="http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/blog/whole-story/yes-plants-have-protein">protein requirements</a>.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beyond-beef-tasty-frugal-protein?ref=seealso">Beyond Beef: Tasty, Frugal Protein</a>)</p> <h2>2. Pineapple Can Destroy Your Taste Buds</h2> <p>Ever noticed that you mouth feels burned after eating a pile of fresh pineapple? That's because pineapple contains a protease enzyme called <a href="http://www.dailycal.org/2013/04/10/fun-food-fact-of-the-week-why-do-some-things-change-the-way-foods-taste/">bromelain</a> that breaks down proteins. In fact, bromelain is so potent, it's used as a meat tenderizer in marinades. Thwart it by avoiding the pineapple's core, or letting a cut pineapple sit in the fridge overnight before eating.</p> <h2>3. Carrots Don't Really Give You Stronger Eyes</h2> <p>If your parents ever convinced you to finish your carrots by promising super-hero vision, you were duped. Carrots are a good source of vitamin A, but not enough to make a difference for your peepers. Interestingly, according to writer Rachael Rettner, &quot;the myth that <a href="http://www.livescience.com/38861-carrots-eyesight-myth-origins.html">carrots improve your eyesight</a> may have its roots in a World War II propaganda campaign.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/baby-carrots-the-frugal-idea-that-isnt?ref=seealso">Baby Carrots: The Frugal Idea That Isn't</a>)</p> <h2>4. Every Banana Is the Same Banana</h2> <p>There are lots of different kinds of banana, but when it comes to the yellow fruit we all know and love &mdash; the Cavendish banana &mdash; there is, literally, only one. &quot;Nearly all <a href="http://www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2010/06/commercial-banana-plants-are-perfect-clones-of-one-another/">commercial banana plants</a> are perfect clones of one another and most originate from one single plant from Southeast Asia.&quot; Oh and bananas don't grow on trees; they're technically <a href="http://www.gardenbetty.com/2011/12/a-banana-plant-is-an-herb-or-little-known-banana-facts/">an herb</a>.</p> <h2>5. Peppers Are Nature's Band-Aid</h2> <p>Need to stop a bleeding cut but don't have a bandage? If you've got <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5824693/use-cayenne-pepper-to-heal-small-cuts">cayenne pepper</a> nearby it could work just as well. Sprinkling it on the wound, or ingesting it in a tea, &quot;equalizes the blood pressure and allows cuts &mdash; even deep cuts &mdash; to clot quickly so you can keep all your blood inside your body, where it belongs.&quot;</p> <h2>6. Apples Pack More Energy Than Coffee</h2> <p>In need of energy, it's customary to reach for a piping hot cup of Joe, but if you want that energy to last all day, you should grab an apple instead. Unlike the caffeine in coffee, which comes on strong but fades fast, <a href="http://www.livestrong.com/article/522866-do-apples-give-you-more-energy-than-coffee/">an apple</a> will keep you fueled up all day because &quot;it contains calories and carbohydrates, as well as vitamins and minerals.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-foods-that-will-keep-you-satisfied-for-longer?ref=seealso">9 Foods That Will Keep You Satisfied for Longer</a>)</p> <h2>7. Watermelons Are Antique Canteens</h2> <p><a href="http://www.watermelon.org/FAQ/FAQ-FunFacts.aspx">Watermelons</a> are 92% water. For this reason, ancient explorers often carried them as &quot;canteens&quot; to ensure hydration on long trips. The high water content may also have been why Egyptians often buried their dead with the pink, juicy fruit.</p> <h2>8. Grapefruits Can Kill You</h2> <p>Grapefruit juice is considered a &quot;nutraceutical&quot; meaning it can prevent and treat disease. But if you're also taking real medications, drinking a glass of grapefruit juice could be the last thing you ever do. &quot;It turns out that <a href="http://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/guide/grapefruit-juice-and-medication">grapefruit juice</a> can directly or indirectly interact in important ways with a number of medications&quot; preventing many drugs from being absorbed into the body creating potentially toxic side effects. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/2-juices-that-are-surprisingly-bad-for-you-and-5-to-drink-instead?ref=seealso">2 Juices That Are Surprisingly Bad for You</a>)</p> <h2>9. Tomatoes Really Are Vegetables</h2> <p>In the United States, more tomatoes are consumed than any other single fruit or vegetable! Trivia geeks love telling their friends that tomatoes are actually a fruit, but technically this is untrue in America. In 1893 <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/money/2013/12/26/256586055/when-the-supreme-court-decided-tomatoes-were-vegetables">the Supreme Court</a> was called upon to settle the debate once and for all, and they decided to make the tomato a vegetable.</p> <h2>10. The Skin Is the Best Part</h2> <p>Do you peel your carrots, cucumbers or apples before eating them? You may be tossing the most nutritional part in the trash can. The highest concentration of <a href="http://www.prevention.com/food/healthy-eating-tips/boost-nutrients-meals-fruit-and-vegetable-peels">vital nutrients</a> is often found in the skin. &quot;Additionally, the skins contain the highest concentrations of fiber, something that most American diets lack.&quot;</p> <p><em>Know any weird or surprising facts about a fruit or vegetable? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beth-buczynski">Beth Buczynski</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-incredible-but-true-facts-about-eating-fruits-and-vegetables">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. 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