I'm going to be switching gears a bit for Gluten Free Fridays. I'm going to move from discussing gluten free basics to discussing how to eat gluten free on a budget.
The biggest grocery money saving change that Tim and I instituted was to create a menu. We try to create our menu around store sales and coupons. This doesn't always work, as a lot of gluten free foods don't usually go on sale or have coupons.
I have a list on my fridge (that I need to update, by the way) of all of the dinners that I can cook or that I'd like to learn to cook. Tim and I'll just sit down and pick dinners off of the list, combining really cheap meals (rice noodles with tomato sauce) with slightly more expensive meals (roast in the crock pot). If I make a more expensive meal, I'll schedule another meal made out of the leftovers. For example if we have a roast in the crock pot, I'll make the leftovers into a beef stew.
We'll then create a shopping list with foods that we need to make the dinners on our menu, and add a few things to the list for breakfasts and lunchs. We shop at a few different stores and only get what's on our list.
I've found that taking these few extra steps has saved us money, and saved me the headache of figuring out what to make for dinner every evening.
Starting in June, we're going to try using only cash for groceries and consumables. We've set a tentative budget of $200/month. I'll let you know how it goes!