Because I’ve been doing the Pantry and Freezer Challenge for a couple of weeks now, and using up groceries from our pantry and freezer, I spent less than what I budgeted for our grocery shopping in both July and August. This month’s grocery shopping was definitely a breeze as I didn’t need to buy too many items at all. We have a number of ready-made meals available in our freezer to use even in September and again all because of the Pantry and Freezer Challenge that I’ve been doing this month! That really has been a money saver for us over the last few weeks. However, I did have to go grocery shopping at the end of the month and here are some of the savings I’d found.


My first grocery stop was at Pick ‘n’ Pay and I bought quite a few of my groceries there. They had a lot of good specials though we didn’t need to buy too many. Pick ‘n’ Pay also offered a R50.00 voucher to Smart Shoppers who spent over R500.00 in their store in one go. I certainly made use of that! And If I’m not mistaken this promotion was valid until 28 August although the voucher is valid for 2 weeks from the date of issue.


I shopped at Pick ‘n Pay on two different days so I got a R50.00 voucher for each shop (that was the plan!). On the second day I used up the first R50.00 voucher I received and kept the second voucher to be used another time (you only get the voucher after you’ve bought but I don’t suppose anyone would stop you from walking back into the shop straightaway to spend it). I also used up another R80.00 in Smart Shopper points, which I was pleased about and for the first time ever, I also cashed in my Snap n Save points at Pick ‘n’ Pay. I didn’t have too much money in my Snap n Save wallet, only R16.50 but I decided to cash it in anyway (you can read why in my post My take on Snap n Save).


Pick ‘n’ Pay had whole chickens at just R24.99 per kg so I stocked up on that as well as minced meat at R55.00 per kg. They also had Canola margarine 1kg for R47.00, a crate of eggs for R35.99, 2.5 kg sugar for R24.99, Mr. Sheen dishwasher tablets 32s for R72.00, ham at the deli for R65.00 per kg (that’s half the price), 1kg Kellog’s cornflakes for R36.99, long life milk (6s) for R65.99, 1 litre plain Yoghurt at R19.00 and Glade automatic freshener refills 2 for R69.99. These are just some of the items that I bought.


Several people have actually asked me why I prefer to buy long-life milk instead of the sachets or the bottles, well, it’s because of the price and I have been buying long-life milk every month on special for several years now. The price of long-life milk on special nowadays is usually R11.00 per litre whereas milk in bottles can go up to R14.00 per litre, or a bit more than that. We go through about 10-12 litres of milk per month which means I save about R36.00 if I buy the long-life milk instead of the sachets or the bottles. Powdered milk would possibly be even cheaper but we just don’t like the taste of powdered milk in our tea/coffee so long-life milk it is!


I found some good R100 deals at Makro this month: 4 bottles of Comfort fabric softener for R100 (they are normally R45.00 each but they only cost R25.00 each with this deal), 6 bottles of Glade tile cleaner for R 100 (they are about R24.00 per bottle but I paid just over R16.00), 7 bottles of Furniture polish for R100 (normally I pay about R19.00 for the cheapest one but this cost me just over R14.00 each) and 2kg Ouma rusks also for R100 as well as 6 bottles of Hall’s 1,25 litre juice concentrate.


If I am buying in bulk I always check the price per unit as I want to make sure that I am paying less per unit that I normally would in the shops. I’m one of those people that you would see walking around the shops with a small calculator to check prices as I go along! Knowing how much items in general cost also helps but since I do our grocery shopping each month I know the prices of items that we regularly buy off by heart. Unless it’s a really good deal, I won’t buy in bulk.


Meat World Alberton had the cheapest Gouda cheese at R69.99 per kg (compare that to 900 gr. of Gouda cheese for R95.00 at Checkers and R89.98 at Woolworths). Pick ‘n’ Pay had no name plain Yoghurt at R19.99 whereas plain Yoghurt at Woolworths was R25.00 if you bought 2 for R50.00 and about R28.00 each at Checkers. Ariel washing powder was just over R44.00 at Checkers while it was on special at Pick ‘n’ Pay for just over R48.00 so of course I stopped by Checkers on my way home to get a couple of bags. All in all I bought a handful of items at Checkers this month and nothing at Woolworths.


At Apple Tree Fresh Food Market I bought potatoes and onions in bulk for the month, some bananas and apples (3kg for R30.00) and I also found about 2kg of Brinjals for R10.00 and 5 very large green peppers for R15.00 which I used to make stuffed Brinjals for us.


All in all, that’s close to R700.00 that I did not spend this month. If I take into account that I didn’t have to do a very large shop this month, and I spent less than what I had originally budgeted for groceries, that was a huge saving.


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