Savvy mother-of-three who slashed her grocery bill in half to £300 reveals you can still cook healthy meals from scratch thanks to cheap yellow sticker products
- Mum-of-three shared her top tips for finding fresh supermarket produce cheaply
- Catering to her autistic son’s needs, she wanting to introduce colourful meals
- She cooks healthy meals daily from scratch with the bargains she discovers
A savvy mother-of-three has revealed how she saves more than £300 on her monthly food shop thanks to her savvy hunting skills.
Ruth Weeks, 33, from Kent regularly uploads pictures of her supermarket sweeps, mostly full of yellow sticker products to social media, to help those who may be feeling the blow with the increasing living costs.
With three young children, George 10, Jessica, nine and Jasmine, seven, charity worker Ruth has nailed her budget shopping with some super saving tricks up her sleeve – something that has halved her halved her bill from £600 down to £300.
Ruth explains: ‘I have a monthly budget of £300, I spend £100 at the local butchers every six weeks, and then I do a supermarket shop, usually at Asda and B&M for cupboard foods and cleaning products, which comes to around £80 a month.
‘With the remaining money, I will then shop for yellow sticker items.’
Mum, Ruth, discovered she could find fresh produce more cheaply in yellow sticker sections while creating a healthy lifestyle for her children
Ruth will often cook healthy meals for her children completely from scratch, using fresh yellow sticker items, such as chicken wings and salad
On a visit to Morrisons Ruth came away with a huge food shop for £24, including cut price tuna steaks and endamame beans, which she used to make this dish
Ruth didn’t start looking for fresh reduced food because of money, she started to help introduce her son George, who suffers with Autism, to colourful meals and snacks such as fresh fruit with yogurt
A yellow sticker haul from Morrisons, including tuna steaks reduced from £7 to £1.75, turkey breast joints down from £10.80 to £2.70 and 98p mackerel
‘With the remaining money, I will then shop for yellow sticker items. Sometimes I use the Too Good To Go app but it can be really hit and miss, sometimes you can get a mass of food which is great, but for me the yellow sticker products are better.
‘Morrisons and Asda are the best for these, I will buy all perishable foods on yellow sticker, which will usually be fruit and veg, cold meats, sandwich fillings, cheeses and yogurts.
‘The other day I only went in to Morrisons for some coriander, and I came out with £84 worth of food for £24.
‘For £24 I bought two turkey roast joints, two packs of tuna steaks, a vegetarian sandwich platter, some pots of edamame beans and a punnet of raspberries.
Ruth finds Morrisons and Asda are the best for deals, she will buy all perishable foods on yellow sticker, which is usually fruit, veg, cold meats, sandwich fillings, cheeses and yogurts
Ruth with her children; George, Jessica and Jasmine, spending £300 a month on groceries, she is able to live with the rising living costs and feels as if she is now in a comfortable position.
The mum has three freezers, as she freezes a lot of what she buys. It also helps her to keep track of the dinners she has left
‘Last week I also bought some of the Best Before boxes from Lidl, I bought four boxes for £6, and what I got in them was amazing, they had carrots, brussels sprouts, bananas and strawberries. From the leftovers I made a summer fruits crumble.
‘I hate food waste; I will only ever buy what I need. People get over excited and always buy too much and then throw it away.
‘It’s such a waste, especially as people are struggling for money at the minute as it is, so we should all have the chance to buy discounted food.
‘Over the years, I have become addicted to seeing how far I can make my budget stretch. My friends think its amazing that I make such fresh and good meals from the discounted food I buy.
‘I actually have three freezers, as I freeze a lot of what I buy. It also helps me to keep track of the dinners I have left as well.
Ruth loves to make Thai Green Curry, for her autistic son, George. She buys a 300g tofu packet for 90p, mangetout for 7p a pack, broccoli for 7p, and then Thai Green Curry paste for £1.30, egg noodles and tinned coconut milk
She has learnt a lot of ways to make her food go further, she buys wonky peppers from Morrisons for 28p, chops them up, freezes them, and adds to a chilli, bolognese or fajitas.
Ruth purchased four Best Before boxes from Lidl, for £6 which included carrots, brussels sprouts, bananas and strawberries, from the left overs I made a summer fruits crumble.
‘I’ve learnt a lot of ways to make my food go further with freezing it, for example I buy the wonky peppers from Morrisons for 28p, chop them up and then freeze them, I can easily add them to a chilli, bolognese or fajitas.
‘I am proud that I can make my children fresh and nutritious meals every day. They love helping me meal plan each week as well, so then I know exactly what to look for in the yellow sticker sections. Yellow sticker shopping means I am able to make fresh food all of the time.’
Having done this for years, Ruth is able to feed her family on a budget each week whilst knowing they are eating healthily.
Spending £300 a month on groceries, she is able to live with the rising living costs and feels as if she is now in a comfortable position. Making home made breakfast, lunch and dinner, Ruth knows exactly what her children are eating.
Ruth is proud that she can make her children fresh and nutritious meals every day. They love helping her meal plan each week as well, so she knows exactly what to look for
A receipt for a yellow sticker haul purchased by Ruth, shows how she managed to get a huge grocery shop including tuna steaks, turkey breast joints, a sandwich platter, potatoes, baked goods and fruit for just over £22
Ruth’s grandmother taught her how to cook and she wants to pass that on to her children, so teaches them how to cook meals from scratch
Ruth adds: ‘I didn’t do this because I was skint, I just started doing it to help George, he suffers with Autism and he is sensitive to colours which meant he would only want to eat beige food, so I wanted to introduce him to colourful meals.
‘I have never been this good at saving, I have learnt some tough lessons, especially when the pandemic hit and money became tight. It made me learn how to be strict with meals and shopping. I had to work through the lockdown and it took its toll.
‘One of the things I love to make him is a Thai Green Curry, which I make from scratch. I buy a 300g tofu packet for 90p, mangetout for 7p a pack, broccoli for 7p, and then Thai Green Curry paste for £1.30, egg noodles and tinned coconut milk.
‘So many people don’t know how to budget which really scares me, especially because the cost of everything is rising. I pay around £90 a week on petrol just to get to work and back, and that’s not even taking into account going out with my children.
The mum is glad she can buy so much fresh produce because it allows her to make healthy meals for her children and family
Ruth puts importance on her children eating healthily and prepares several meals a week from scratch
‘I sometimes also cook dinner for my parents as well, which mean I can be making up to seven meals for dinner, so I’m glad I am able to be able to do this all fresh.
‘I would love to help and inspire people who want to try and cut down on their food shopping.
‘I think it is really important to show my children that they can eat well, and I will always get them to help me cook. They love it and want to help.
‘My grandmother taught me how to cook and I want to pass that on to my children, they learn how to cook meals from scratch.’
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