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How to Save Money While Grocery Shopping and Earn Free Gift Cards

How to Save Money While Grocery Shopping and Earn Free Gift Cards

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How to Use Fetch Rewards to Get the Most out of Grocery Savings

Finding the best grocery deals each week shouldn’t require extra legwork. After clipping grocery coupons, flipping through food deals, and searching for groceries online, you’ve spent more time searching for groceries than buying them. Without a plan, however, your average grocery budget can get pretty high. Fortunately, Fetch makes it simple to save money on all your favorite products.

Combined with a grocery budgeting plan, grocery rebate apps help you cut down on your weekly food bill. Grocery rebates are a modern way to get cash back for simply buying your usual items. With over 250 participating brands and thousands of popular products, Fetch simplifies the grocery rebate process by automatically applying savings to your account every time you purchase a participating product. No need to purchase brands you don’t like or treck out to a new grocery spot.

Getting started is easy. Simply download the Fetch app, create an account, and snap a photo of your receipts. You can also use the Fetch app to earn special offer points on grocery deals, create “smart” grocery lists, and browse delicious recipes.

What is Fetch?

Fetch is a grocery rebate app for your mobile device that allows you to save money by buying products you already know and use. Regardless of where you shop, you can scan your receipt with Fetch app to save on items you love, every time you purchase them. After scanning your receipt, Fetch automatically awards you points based on your purchases. Redeem these points toward free rewards from a long list of favorite restaurants, beauty and clothing stores, and countless other categories. So how is this possible? Fetch partners directly with the brands you love. You receive rewards from these brands for purchasing their products.

Fetch can be used across the country wherever you shop for groceries, whether it be a national big box store or the local market on the corner. Scan any grocery receipt and you’ll save. No need to change your habits to wrack up grocery deals.

How to Use Fetch to Save on Grocery Shopping

The Fetch app makes getting grocery rebates quick and straightforward so you can focus on shopping. After you download the app on your mobile device, create an account and scan your grocery receipts, no matter where you shop.

For bonus and special offer points, peruse the Fetch App to see which brands are offering grocery deals that week. Each special offer tile indicates how many bonus special offer points you can earn for the featured product. You can conveniently save your favorite grocery deals to your Smart List as a reminder, but there’s no need to clip special deals to earn these points.

After you shop, take a picture of your grocery receipt with your phone and let the app automatically apply points for purchasing participating products and special deals. If you see any errors from your scan, manually change the details with ease. The app will recognize all your participating purchases as well as any special deals right from your receipt.

Once you’ve accumulated enough reward points, you can redeem them for gift cards across countless shopping categories, including popular brands in travel, beauty, electronics, pets and more. You can even donate your points to a participating charity.

Fetch Brand Partnerships That Help You Save on Groceries

Fetch pairs with an incredible range of big-name brands from every category throughout the grocery store. There’s no need to go out of your way to change your shopping habits or dig around for coupons for groceries each week. As mentioned above, Fetch delivers points for purchases of thousands of popular products, from groceries to beauty products, and even beer. Learn about grocery sales each week to tailor your grocery list to save even more money. With such vast variety, Fetch allows you to save money on groceries more quickly and easily than other grocery price comparison apps.

Earn points on brands from breakfast to dinner, including Chunky Soups, DiGiorno and Kraft. Treat yourself to dessert when buying Breyer’s Ice Cream, Klondike Bars or a pint of Ben & Jerry’s. You can even use the app when buying beer.

Why not get money back for all your usual beauty buys as well? Earn points on brands like Dove, St. Ives and Tresemme as you pick up your everyday favorites.

Even when you shop at discount grocery stores, it can be tricky to find some of your essentials at a low price. Some essential food and household items tip the scales on your grocery bill but are simply unavoidable. By using Fetch, you earn savings on these items.

Get Fetch No Matter Where You Shop

Comparing supermarkets in your area is often a necessary step for saving money on groceries. You may even choose to split up your weekly shop, buying some essentials at discount grocery stores and others at your usual spot. Finding the products you need at a price you like can be a challenge. The good news? Fetch allows you to submit your receipts from any store you choose.

Fetch partners directly with popular brands, allowing you to save on the products you love, regardless of where you buy them. From your favorite grocery stores to big box stores to club stores, liquor stores, conveniences stores, and drugstores, Fetch can help you save.

19 Tips To Save While Grocery Shopping

1. Set a Strict Budget and Stick to It

Ever wonder what the common food budget for one or more people is across the US? The USDA keeps track of the average grocery budget each month. The data varies by family size, the age of household members, and levels of budget plans. Though prices range per family, a general rule of thumb is to try to stick to a budget of $100 per family member per week.

Most importantly, find what grocery budget amount works within your larger budget and set this number in stone at the start of the month. This will advise everything from grocery list making, to when to seek out less expensive online options, to ideas for eating healthy on your budget.

2. Make a Shopping List Ahead of Time

Without a grocery list, it’s easy to slip into autopilot in the grocery store, especially if you’re hungry or tired from a busy week. As ideas pop up throughout the week—either for cheap healthy meals or staples that have run out—mark them on a running grocery list.

You have many options available to you for creating grocery lists. Some people prefer to write on a physical list that they keep in their purse or on their kitchen counter. Others prefer to use a refrigerator whiteboard or the “Notes” app on their phone. We suggest keeping an electronic grocery list, as it is easily accessible on-the-go, and can be shared with friends and family who may be doing some of the grocery shopping themselves.

If you’re looking for an easy way to create and organize your grocery lists, try the Fetch app. The app has a shopping list generation tool that makes it easy to compile the perfect grocery list for any budget.

Once your grocery list is complete, it may be helpful to separate it into categories to guide your shopping. We suggest dividing your list into categories by the stores you intend to visit during your grocery shop. For example, items that can be purchased at the discount store should all be grouped together. Finally, if you clip coupons or scan your local paper for grocery deals, mark any discounted items on your grocery list.

3. Be Smart About When You Shop

One of the best tips for grocery shopping on a budget is heading to the store when you’re feeling rested, fed, and focused. Though it can be hard to avoid, rushing off to the store in a hurry can mean missing grocery deals or making impulse purchases.

Though kids can be a fun distraction for getting through a shop, you’re more likely to save money on groceries if you’re concentrated and calm.

Most importantly, never head to the store on an empty stomach. You may even consider keeping some cheap healthy snacks in your car or purse if you forget. If you’re hungry, you’re more likely to branch off your grocery list.

4. Make Meal Plans

Sit down with your family and brainstorm both your must-have snacks as well as some cheap dinner ideas for the upcoming week. This helps to get the whole family involved in reaching your grocery budget goal. You can also plan who is cooking and helping out with dinner each night.

Check what you currently have in the pantry and build your basic grocery list from here. If you need new recipes, look at your favorite blogs, cookbooks, and recipes on online grocery shopping sites for new suggestions of how to eat healthy on a budget. You can also check out the recipe inspiration feature on the Fetch app for healthy, budget-friendly recipes for any occasion.

Fetch Rewards Tips and Tricks

5. Limit Your Number of Shopping Trips

Though it can be helpful to break up your shopping between a few local stores and online grocery shops, create one designated time per week to buy food. Quick, unplanned stops throughout the week mean buying things outside of the cheap and healthy meal plan you spent time building. On these hurried trips, you’re more likely to grab items without checking for sales and coupons elsewhere.

6. Use Rebate and Savings Programs

Taking advantage of grocery rebates and savings programs can help you save money just by making your usual purchases. With Fetch, all you have to do is snap a photo of your receipt and rack up points toward rewards and discounts on thousands of products. This makes heading back to the store next week even more exciting.

7. Start with What You Have

The first step for cooking on a budget is utilizing what you already have in the pantry. Do you have leftover meat in the freezer that could work into your meal plan? What about leftover pasta that’s been piling up? Dig into the back of your cupboards, refrigerator, and freezer—you may have a special sauce or seasoning that could inspire a cheap, healthy meal.

If you’re new to cooking, it’s important to know that many ingredients in recipes can be swapped out for alternatives. If the recipe calls for a specific protein, you may be able to use what you have at home instead. Try to avoid purchasing spices, herbs or sauces that you don’t foresee yourself using in the future—a similar option may work just as well.

8. Know Where to Shop

Quite often, even the cheapest grocery stores in the area won’t have everything you need. A unique way to save money of groceries is to consider shopping at discount stores like Dollar General and Save-a-Lot for your non-food items. When buying in bulk is the best option, stores like BJs and Costco may be cheaper and require fewer shops a month.

Stay in the know about stores with special savings programs. For example, Target will match the prices of goods from select online competitors.

Local farmers markets may be the best option for cheap and fresh produce, and discount stores like Aldi may be a good option for select items. Be sure to check out all of your options as you build your grocery shopping list.

9. Try Price Matching

Many big name stores, like Walmart and Target, have price matching policies. This means that they will match the price another store offers on a product, given that the item size and type are the same.

Before you shop, check local ads, grocery store flyers, and even junk mail ads to see if you can find discounted prices on items you need. Once you get to the grocery store, pick up these items in the quantity indicated in the ads. If your grocery store price matches, all you have to do is show them the price another store advertises and they will match it.

10. Buy Food in Season

The more sustainable and cheapest grocery options often go hand-in-hand. By sticking to seasonal produce, you’re more likely to pick out the cheapest vegetables and fruit in the store. For example, root vegetables are more plentiful in the fall and winter, and stores often mark them on sale during this time.

Peruse online shopping sites for seasonal sales and specials as well. Some companies may even connect with local farms in the area and will offer deals on ongoing purchases.

Both of these tactics will also help you eat healthy on a budget. By keeping your recipes simple and filled with fresh, seasonal items, you’re less likely to need heavy salt or seasoning.

11. Buy What’s on Sale

Grocery sales often require you to buy more than one item to get the discounted price. Though sale items are always a great way to save money on groceries, only purchase the amount you will use before the expiration dates. Dry goods are perfect for this reason, as are canned vegetables and condiments.

12. Calculate As You Go

This helpful grocery store saving skill can become a fun challenge as you get used to it over time. Keep a running tally in your mind or on a phone calculator as you pick up items from your grocery list. If you’re concerned that you’ll go over budget, choose the items from your basic grocery list—made up of all your essentials—and add on any cheap healthy snacks afterward.

Grocery shopping on a budget doesn’t have to be nerve-wracking, and this game, in particular, relieves the fear of the checkout counter. If you have a sense of what to expect when you arrive, there’s no sticker shock when it’s time to pay. This also keeps you more aware of potentially double-swiped items or missed discounts.

13. Build in Variety

Add some excitement to your grocery shopping list with a few new items each week. It’s easy to fall into dependable recipes that you know help you shop on a budget, but throwing in some variety keeps you motivated to cook each week.

New meal ideas will help you avoid heading to a restaurant throughout the week. Trying new recipes also helps you broaden your cooking skills. This eventually leads to the ability to substitute ingredients more easily, which is always a dependable way to save money on groceries.

14. Know Your Splurge Items

If there are brands or specific food items you cannot live without, build your grocery list around them first. Items like meat, paper goods, and pet food can tip the scales of your budget, but at times, it may be unavoidable. Choose which products are absolutely necessary for you and make the rest of your grocery decisions from here.

15. Price Check at the Counter

Grocery stores move quickly, and it isn’t abnormal for a sale to not make it into the checkout system. Keep an eye on the screen as your food is rung up. If you know a sale did not ring up properly, let them know. To save time, snap a photo of sale displays on your phone in case there are any issues.

As mentioned earlier, shop around for the best price online in case your store practices price matching.

16. Double-Check the Receipt

As you head out of the store, take a glance at the receipt to make sure nothing was rung up twice or without its sale price. This is especially helpful if your original estimation was way off from the actual total. Speak with customer service if you spot an error.

17. Eat Leftovers

Make a leftover game plan as you write your meal plan for the week. By avoiding lunch restaurants and takeout, you’re more likely to stick with your goal of eating healthy on a budget. Transform some recipes into new meals such as adding taco meat to a casserole or turning roasted chicken into a salad.

18. Learn How to Properly Freeze, Store and Even Can Your Food

Finding food in your ridge past its expiration date is always a disappointment. As your week goes on, store all leftovers in airtight containers. If you plan to wait more than a few days to eat something, pop it in the fridge. Some foods, meat and certain vegetables require specific freezing instructions.

For easy meals, freeze and store food in their individual or family portion sizes. This is especially helpful with soups and stews. Simply pull them out of the fridge and warm in a pan on nights you cannot cook.

If you have a large batch of tomatoes or cucumbers from your CSA or a bulk sale purchase, learn how to can them. This stretches your veggies into the next season while allowing them to stew and develop flavor in the meantime.

19. Track Your Spending

Using a debit or credit card at the store allows you to more easily track your spending. When all your purchases are in one place, you can budget more clearly. A mobile banking app is especially helpful for this.

Go a step further by creating a family budgeting sheet in Excel. After grocery shopping each week, add your receipt to your total budget for the month. This way, you can adjust the following week’s grocery list based on your budget.

Tips for Creating Your Own Healthy Shopping List

There are a handful of things you can do to make creating a healthy grocery list easier and set you on the right track for better shopping and cleaner eating. Consider these helpful tips for creating your own healthy grocery shopping list for a week of nourishing meals:

1. Start With a Weekly Meal Plan

Organizing your shopping list from a healthy meal plan is a cost-effective and promising way to stay on track with your healthy eating goals. Instead of buying general foods you consider healthy, working from a meal plan ensures that each item you purchase has a purpose within a recipe or meal.

Break up your meal plan into four categories: breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. By thinking ahead about each meal, you’re less likely to grab an extra pastry at the coffee shop or order takeout on a night when you don’t have enough ingredients for a well-balanced meal. It’s always fine to splurge occasionally; your meal plan is not made to make you feel rigid about eating. But, planning out healthy meals will help you create a pantry and fridge that encourage you to stick to your health goals.

Meal planning and healthy cooking often means that you’ll work with more basic, whole food items. As you find your family’s favorite meals, keep your recipes and healthy grocery list ideas compiled in a central location for future trips to the store.

2. Focus on What Nourishes You

It can be easy to fall into fad eating trends and strict diets when creating your first healthy meal plan. Instead, tailor your grocery shopping toward your nutritional needs and healthy items that you enjoy or have always wanted to try. Everyone’s body is different, and forcing yourself into a diet that doesn’t serve you may not be healthy or sustainable in the long run. Begin by choosing balanced recipes that seem exciting to you. Search for weekly meal plans that balance the use of protein, whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats. Make notes after each meal, commenting on what worked and what didn’t so you can plan your next grocery shopping list.

Once you find specific items that please the whole family, mark them on your master grocery list, and use them as a launching point for future meal plans.

If items like sugary beverages or fatty snacks were a regular part of your daily habits, ease out of these habits slowly and replace them with healthier alternatives. Leave space for one or two “cheat” or splurge items to have as a treat.

3. Variety is Key

Healthy grocery shopping doesn’t mean that you have to make bland meals. As you find your favorite healthy foods, begin to incorporate them into your grocery lists, including a mix of trustworthy items and new variations to keep things exciting. Fresh herbs and spices are a great way to explore, as are lesser-known grains like teff and farro.

You can also add variety in your weekly splurge item. If dessert is a big part of your dinner ritual, give baking a try on the weekends. Similar to cooking your own dinner, baking your own desserts gives you a better sense of what you’re eating.

4. Shop Around

Looking for new items to add to your grocery list? Consider branching out from your usual store to try out specialty spots in the area. Break your healthy grocery list up into several sections: basics and home goods, meat and protein, fruits and vegetables and dairy. Can you grab a few of these items at a local butcher or weekly farmer’s market?

Grocery shopping at new stores can also spark ideas around healthy ingredients you wouldn’t have spotted in your usual routine.

Healthy Grocery List Item Breakdown

Feel more organized in the grocery store by breaking up your food into categories. Though each person’s diet varies by their own needs, allergies and preferences, explore new options for healthy grocery list items as you build your master grocery list. Be sure to balance your diet with the following categories.


Buying fruit and vegetables in season is a great way to stay on top of a well-balanced diet and keep your grocery budget under control. Fresh produce is key to a nutritious diet, supplying a range of dietary fiber, vitamins, and folic acid.

Produce items you may consider adding to your healthy shopping list:

  • Leafy greens, such as spinach, kale or swiss chard
  • 3-5 seasonal vegetables
  • 1-2 seasonal fruits
  • Frozen fruits for smoothies and yogurt
  • Garlic and onion


Items rich in protein — either meat-based or vegetarian — provide necessary amino acids, minerals, vitamins, and many healthy fats.

Protein items you may consider adding to your healthy shopping list:

  • Free-range eggs
  • Lean ground or whole beef
  • Skinless chicken breasts
  • Fish—wild salmon is particularly high in healthy fats
  • Tofu or tempeh
  • Fresh, canned or dried beans or lentils
  • Ground turkey


If you’re able to eat dairy, cheese, milk and yogurt act as excellent sources of vitamin D, calcium and protein. Fresh dairy intake also increases B12, potassium, magnesium, and riboflavin. Alternatives to dairy such as almond and coconut milk work well for those with dairy sensitivities.

Dairy items you may consider adding to your healthy shopping list:

  • 1/2 gallon whole or low-fat milk
  • Plain Greek yogurt
  • Fresh selection of soft and hard cheeses such as feta, sharp cheddar or swiss
  • Cottage cheese


To expand your healthy shopping list, break free from traditional white rice and pasta for your grain intake. Whole-grain products contain higher amounts of vitamins, minerals, and fiber.

Grain items you may consider adding to your healthy shopping list:

  • Sprouted, whole grain or fresh sourdough bread
  • Unsalted butter
  • Tri-colored quinoa mix
  • Wild rice
  • Plain rolled oats
  • Whole grain cereal or granola
  • Whole wheat pasta

Canned Goods

Some canned products, like tomatoes, are often best for cooking into stews and soups. They also last longer, making your healthy grocery shopping list budget-friendly as well.

Canned items you may consider adding to your healthy shopping list:

  • Stewed, diced or whole tomatoes
  • Tomato paste
  • Chickpeas
  • Water-packed tuna
  • Low-sodium or no-sodium chicken, vegetable or beef broth

Cooking Staples

Keeping a master grocery list helps you keep track of all your basic pantry staples. Stock your kitchen with these necessities so that you’re less likely to order out or use processed stocks and sauces. Spices and fresh herbs also perk up dull recipes and reinvent simple items like chicken breast and tofu.

Grocery staples you may consider adding to your healthy shopping list:

  • Olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • Ground pepper
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Cinnamon
  • Whole grain mustard
  • Rosemary
  • Dried oregano
  • Paprika
  • Chili powder
  • Natural peanut butter or alternative nut butter
  • Soy or tamari sauce

Bottom Line

Creating a healthy shopping list is about finding a balance between your nutritional needs and personal preferences.

Meal planning and grocery shopping shouldn’t be about cutting out all your favorite foods, but instead, finding new and nourishing items that make you and your family satisfied while still eating healthy on a budget. With the above tips and healthy grocery list reference guide, it’s time for you to create your own healthy grocery list and save some time on your next trip to the store.

If you’re looking for recipe inspiration, check out the Fetch app to browse a variety of recipes, create meal plans, and save money when you purchase healthy items you love.