6 On Your Side: Consumer Confidence, Saving money at the grocery store

(ABC 6 NEWS) – You’ve no doubt noticed that your recent grocery bills have taken a bigger bite out of your wallet. Prices are creeping up all over the store, here is our 6 On Your Side: Consumer Confidence Report with some simple tips to save money.

Stephany Domingos is focused on making healthy meals for her family. As prices at her local supermarket climb, she’s found that planning every meal in advance pays off.

“Meal planning definitely helps me save money because I’m being conscious about what I’m eating, and what I’m going to be purchasing, so I do not overbuy," Stephany Domingos said.

Stretching your dollar at the supermarket is worth the effort. Some approaches to saving will also lead you to eat healthier! –

Let’s start in the store. A well-thought-out list will help keep you from impulse buys.

Try replacing some of the meat in your diet. Dried beans, peas, and lentils are far cheaper than animal proteins, and they’re packed with nutrients. Legumes are a great base for dips, bowls or salads, hearty stews, and veggie burgers.

“Beans are a source of fiber, a nutri­ent most adult Americans don’t get enough of. And getting protein from beans, rather than red or processed meat can protect against certain cancers, and other chronic diseases," Consumer Reports Nutritionist, Amy Keating said.

Eggs are another nutritious and still relatively inexpensive staple.

Use them in breakfast burritos, lunchtime omelets, or a savory dinner pancake, and benefit from their vitamin and protein power.

“Consumer Reports has found that store brands are often comparable in taste and nutrition to name brands," Keating said.

And store-brand foods and beverages can cost 20 to 25 percent less than name brands of a similar product.

If you don’t already check unit prices, try it. It’s this “per ounce” or “per pound” number next to the full price. At almost five dollars less per quart, this larger bottle of olive oil is a better buy.

Consumer Reports also shared that your freezer is a money saver. A family of four can save about two thousand dollars a year by freezing large quantities of foods on sale or in-season and building meals around those foods.