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There are two main grocery store chains in our area: Randall's and HEB. Every Thursday, the ads for both chains come in the mail. We look for loss leaders, deals, etc. and may plan meals around it.

Each store has their own quirks. Randall's often offers blow-out loss-leader deals. London Broil for $1.99/lb for example. We'll make a special trip and load up. We always check their add for such spectacular deals. HEB, on the other hand, tends to have "buy this, get that free" deals. We look for things we use, store, or can donate to our church's food pantry.

We do our staple shopping at HEB, because we know that they are consistently cheaper for what we buy. We used to keep a price book but have given it up since HEB is the clear winner. We don't clip coupons but will use them where available. Most of what we buy does not offer coupons, anyway. (Still looking for a coupon on a big bag of potatoes.)

Finally, the best grocery cost cutter is learning to cook. I can take a cheap cut of meat and make a gourmet meal out of it with a marinade. We can take an el cheapo roast and get 2-3 good meals out of it. Pre-made and convenience food is a killer on the grocery budget.


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