Christmas food... mince pies, pigs in blankets and chocolates come to mind. I love it all!
I also love to save money (at Magic Freebies HQ it’s really all we really talk about) but I know that Christmas is a tricky time to do so. Fear not - I have a list of handy tips that will help you save on your food shop during this holiday season.
1. Plan your Christmas eating schedule
Take the time to plan your Christmas food schedule with an old-fashioned pen and paper. Use these ye olde tools to work out how many guests you’re having for Christmas lunch, dinner and all the other meals you have to organise.
Once it’s all on paper you can work out what you’re feeding everyone, and factor in any dietary requirements to take into consideration for that Boxing Day cold buffet - cousin Amy is a vegan now, remember?
2. Are you a gambler? Do a late Christmas food shop
Supermarkets will often have excess stock, which means they’ll start dropping their prices, the nearer to Christmas it gets.
If you fancy a gamble, why not wait for as long as you can to get hold of your turkey, biscuits, chocolate, and wine? This is the perfect money-saving tactic if your Christmas is a relaxed one.
3. Buy frozen vegetables
Don’t be a martyr - you won’t get extra points for digging up those carrots or shelling peas by hand. Consider buying frozen vegetables and save yourself the pain of peeling.
Check out websites like mySupermarket to see if you can reduce the cost of your shop without stepping out your front door. Comparison sites will tell you the cost of your shopping basket should you choose one supermarket, compared to another.
4. Make your own
I know that packet of pigs in blankets looks unbelievably delicious but hold back. A packet of bacon, sausages, and honey will be cheaper in the long run. Mince pies only require some mincemeat and a few other ingredients, and it’s a good way to keep the kids entertained during school holiday - plus you can freeze them!
5. Hunt down Christmas food offers
Make sure you’ve sniffed out all the offers that your local shops have to offer. Pick up those Christmas leaflets, magazines and scan newspapers for all those 2-for-1s or 30% bargains on food.
6. Get social & sign up to newsletters
If you have your favourite food brands, now is the time to make sure you’re following them on social media - Facebook, Twitter, even Instagram. You’ll then be in prime position to pounce on any Christmas offers they post and you could save yourself some extra pennies.
As well as following them on social media, check out their websites and sign up to the newsletters if they’re available. Who knows what exciting things they might send you?
7. Write a list... and check it twice
It’s easy to go into a supermarket and buy half an aisle’s worth of food. Instead, arm yourself with a list full of all the items you really need to buy, and do NOT divert from it.
8. Think before you buy
Do you really need a whole turkey? You don’t want to be underprepared, but it’s important to assess how much you will actually need for the Christmas season.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my tips on how to save on Christmas food this season. Have a lovely time!