20 Grocery Items Frugal Don’t Buy

Frugality is not about depriving yourself but making smart financial choices to get the most value for your money. Frugal individuals carefully calculate their grocery store purchases and avoid spending money on overpriced and unnecessary items. This approach helps them shop within their budget and enjoy a more sustainable lifestyle.

Pre-cut Fruits and Vegetables

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Convenience does not come for free. Pre-cut vegetables and fruits are convenient to prepare, but you have to pay extra money for them. Frugal people prefer to buy whole fruits and vegetables and cut them themselves. This saves money and also ensures the freshness of the food.

Name Brand Products

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Brand-name products from well-known companies are more expensive at grocery stores than store brands. The quality and quantity are often similar, but the cost can be cut in half. Frugal people avoid paying extra money for the sake of name brands.

Bottled Water

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Bottled water is costly and can easily stretch your budget. Instead, frugal individuals invest in good water filters and use reusable water bottles, which are more sustainable, save money, and reduce plastic waste.

Pre-packaged Meals

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These meals are easy to prepare and save time, but they are more expensive and do not have high nutritional value. It is better to purchase raw food and prepare meals from scratch at home, as such meals are healthier and less expensive.

Prepared Snack Trays

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These prepared snack trays are costly and often filled with items you may not need. The best alternative is to pick the basic items of your choice and make them yourself. You can even buy the items on sale to prepare them at a lower cost.

Frozen meals

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Frugal people avoid buying frozen meals as they can put an extra burden on their budget. Although these meals are convenient, they are pricey. Instead, they prefer to either cook their own meals and freeze them or buy frozen meals in bulk to cut down the cost.

Off-season Fruits

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Grocery stores offer all kinds of fruits, whether seasonal or off-season. However, off-season fruits are more expensive than seasonal fruits. Hence, purchasing seasonal fruits is better if you want to save money. They are less costly and also healthier.

Organic Products

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While organic products are healthy and have several benefits, they come at a higher cost. A frugal shopper knows what to prioritize and what not to. They purchase organic products according to their benefits and stick to conventional products when the item does not hold much nutritional value.

Brand Toiletries

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Toiletries from known brands are expensive, and there is little difference in quality. It is better to invest in store-brand or generic toiletries. Items like cleaning products, shampoo, and soaps offer the same quality at a fraction of the price.

Canned and Packaged Soups

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Homemade soups may take extra time but are more affordable than canned and packaged soups. You can easily assemble items of your choice for homemade soups and prepare healthy soups at home without paying extra money. You can try flavorful chickpea soup or Italian lentil soup at home.

Energy Drinks and Specialty Beverages

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Frugal shoppers avoid spending their money on energy drinks and specialty beverages, as they are expensive and not good for health. Sparkling water is a better alternative to these drinks and also comes within budget. Additionally, it is comparatively less harmful to health.

Specialty Ice Cream

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Specialty ice cream can be expensive at grocery stores. Frugal shoppers avoid these items and opt for more affordable options, such as standard supermarket ice creams or homemade versions. This provides them with a satisfactory experience without paying premium prices.

Pre-made pizzas

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Pre-made pizzas are convenient for saving time and effort, but they are expensive. Instead, making your pizza at home or using store-bought pizza kits are more affordable options for frugal individuals.

Another benefit of making your pizza is that you can customize the ingredients according to your preferences and enjoy delicious pizza without spending much.

Bakery Items

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Bakery items such as bread, pastries, and cakes are expensive in-store. Making these items at home is relatively easy and allows frugal shoppers to save money. When you prepare items at home, you have significant control over the ingredients and you can also enjoy fresh, homemade goods.

Bagged Salads

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Bagged salads at grocery stores are not only expensive but also lack value. Frugal people prefer to purchase whole vegetables and greens in bulk to prepare fresh salads at home. This saves money and allows them to enjoy fresher, customizable salads with more nutritional value.

Brand Boxed Cereal

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Brand-name boxed cereals are expensive, especially without any sales or offers. Frugal shoppers opt for generic or store-brand cereals, which are similar in taste and nutritional value but much less expensive.

Another alternative is to purchase oats, nuts, and dried fruits in bulk to make your own cereals at home.

Fancy Condiments

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Fancy condiments are expensive, so it’s better to avoid purchasing them to save money. Store-brand versions or homemade condiments are the best alternatives. Plain ketchup, mustard, and mayonnaise are more affordable alternatives to gourmet versions. Additionally, homemade dressings or sauces using simple ingredients like vinegar, oil, and spices are more cost-effective.

Bottled Coffee or Tea

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Bottled teas and coffees are never on the list of frugal shoppers when visiting the grocery store. They prefer more economical options, like brewing their own coffee or tea at home. This not only saves them money but also gives them control over the amount of sugar and flavors.

Prepared Sandwiches

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Choosing budget-friendly alternatives over prepared sandwiches is another smart way for frugal shoppers to save money.

Although tempting, prepared sandwiches are much more expensive. Instead, buying ingredients like bread, deli meat, cheese, and vegetables in bulk and preparing sandwiches at home is a more affordable and healthier option.

High-end cooking utensils

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Grocery stores sell many high-end cooking utensils, but they are often expensive. Frugal shoppers can find the same utensils at much lower prices in kitchen supply stores, online retailers, or Facebook marketplaces.

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