THE HIGH COST OF CONVENIENCE FOODS
-- Cut your food and grocery budget -- Strategies for low price shopping --
Covering coupons, rebates, sales, stock piling, convenience stores, substitutions, scams, refunds
Consumer guide to frugal living. From previously published Newsletters © Copyright 1995-2000 by SAVVY-DISCOUNTS.com
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2.4 THE HIGH COST OF CONVENIENCE FOODS - SUPERMARKET DISCOUNTS
Convenience food can be a very good deal. A brownie mix, for example, costs less and takes less time than baking from scratch. Also canned or frozen vegetables and fruit are often cheaper than fresh, especially out of season.
However, a lot of convenience products are not worth the extra cost. While frozen chopped vegetables are a good buy, these same vegetables with a butter sauce can add 20%-30% to the cost. In a few seconds most people can add butter and save themselves the money. Include pasta and some spices to the frozen package and the price might double.
Convenience foods are definitely a trend. Expect to be severely tempted as busy families try to find ways to buy time. You'll be seeing droves of ready-made salads in a bag, complete frozen meals, etc. Although they'll save you time, you might also get a heavy dose of chemical additives, artificial colors and flavors, plus preservatives.
Never purchase these impulsively. You are paying for the work and time you'll save. Make sure you are getting your money's worth.
2.4.1 HAVE A GOOD GROCERY SUBSTITUTIONS LIST
As readers of SAVVY-DISCOUNTS.com know, flexibility is one of the best ways to save time and money. An ingredients substitution list could save you a trip to the store. Or you could substitute less expensive ingredients in a recipe, or make do with what you've got, or leave out ingredients that bother some members of your family.
If you don't have such a list, consider getting the book Substituting Ingredients.
Substituting Ingredients, An A to Z Kitchen Reference, Becky Epstein & Hilary Klein, The Globe Pequot Press, $8.95.