Each week, I make a careful study of the weekly circulars for the local King Soopers, Sunflower, Safeway, and Albertsons. I also go to Target but that is generally for non-grocery stuff.
If there are any fantastic sales going on at any particular store, or any store-specific coupons in the circulars, I make a note and clip whichever coupons we will use. In general, I plan to do most of our shopping at King Soopers in any given week, simply because they have the best prices for the most part. Safeway is most expensive, but when they have good sales it's worth stopping over there. Sunflower has fantastic produce and produce sales, and it's where we buy J his rice milk (which we mix with the goat milk; we're trying Oat Milk as a replacement for rice milk this week) and coffee. Albertsons is reasonably out of the way, and I don't go there unless they have a killer deal, like their frequent GM cereals for $1.50 a box sales, and so on. King Soopers and Safeway both "double" manufacturer's coupons up to $1 in final value.
To use coupons, I look through the coupons I've accumulated for those that I can stack with sales and/or store coupons. I get coupons online (links to the right) and from the Sunday paper ads, which my mom saves for me.
Before I head to the store, however, I make a list in a spreadsheet of everything I will buy, how much of it, at what store, and what the price will be after coupons. I've set this up to total the estimated costs, so that when I leave I have already got an idea of what everything should cost and that way I can stay on budget.
Here are my deals from this week (food only):
King Soopers (Kroger):
- Colorado Proud milk, $1.88
- 2 # bag of Sunmaid raisins, $4.99
- Kroger canola oil, $2.69
- Welch's frozen grape juice cocktail, reg $1.89, sale $1.29
- 2 jars of Tree Top Applesauce, reg $3.99, BOGO sale, plus $1/2 coupon, final price $2.99
- Honey Nut cheerios, reg. $2.95, sale $1.77, plus $0.55/1 coupon doubled to $1, final $0.77
- Total cereal, reg $3.43, sale $1.77, plus $0.75/1 coupon doubled to $1, final $0.77
- 1 Campbell's Soup at Hand, $1.89, plus $0.50/1 coupon doubled to $1, final $0.89
- 3 small bananas, $0.54/lb, 0.82 lb, final $0.44
- Ricotta Cheese, reg $2.69, sale $2.29
- Locally grown Bartlett pears, reg $1.99/lb, sale $0.99/lb, total $3.08
- Market Pantry Natural Peanut Butter, $2.15
- 4 jalapeno peppers, $1.69/lb, total $0.42
- 2 green bell peppers, on sale for 2/$1, total $1
- Sunflower brand ground Ginger, reg $2.99, sale $0.99
- Raspberry jam, reg $2.69, sale $1.99
- 2 Oat Milk, reg $2.59, sale $1.59, total $3.18
- Coffee, $6.99/lb, 0.55/lb for $3.84
Grocery total: $32.68
I could also include the shampoo I bought at King Soopers (and evidently had a $1 eSaver coupon which I had forgotten about, plus another $1 off coupon) for a total of $2.49. Apparently Kings will stack MF coupons if one is an ecoupon, but I can't guarantee that this is usually the case.
At Target I bought some Johnson's baby wash with a $1/1 Target coupon plus a $1/1 manufacturer coupon, for a total of $1.29. I also got some Colgate toothpaste with another $1/1 Target coupon, and a $1/1 manufacturer's coupon, total $1.79. I did need to buy some travel baby wipes for the diaper bag, so I got some Up and Up brand ones for $1.47. I like them better than Huggies, because they don't rip so easily. The price is a bonus too.
Target total was $4.55.
Non-food total? $7.04. Sweet.