Today's tip is one that I already discussed in Episode 4 when I talked about buying in bulk, so I will just add a point or two.
Check your grocer's bulk bins. You might find that products such as oats, nuts, grains, and many other items are considerably less expensive when you bag them yourself. I purchase all of my spices at bulk rates and pay much less!
The main thing I want to add to what I said earlier is look around whenever you're out shopping. Recently we were at the City Market in downtown Kansas City. We wandered into a cute little kosher shop because it appeared busy and we were curious. I found that their store was full of bulk items! A lot of it was nuts and trail mixes and the like, which was still too high per pound for my budget, but further into the store, they had spices and seasonings, and a few other odds and ends. The spices were the unbelievably low price of $1 for a good-sized scoop! They had many selections available, and the fragrances were fantastic. We even found some very interesting spice blends, including Arabian spice. I have no idea what is in it, but it smells wonderful, and we bought one scoop because we just had to try it. I never would have imagined I would find spices cheaper than my favorite bulk-spice shop, Planters Seed, but there they were! I only went in there due to curiousity, and I'm glad I did.
I used to think that only health-food stores carried bulk bins, but in looking around my usual stores, I have found that they all have some sort of bulk, particularly in their own healthy eating section. I am not able to buy a lot of my grains and such in bulk, but I know some stores carry extensive bulk bins. If your store is one of those, definitely check them out! I have read blogger's tales of great deals in these bins. You might also get to try things you wouldn't have otherwise. Perhaps you've never had farina or quinoa. You can buy just enough to make it once and see how it goes over. If it's a hit, then you can get more. If it isn't, you haven't wasted money on a full package.
Give bulk bins a chance. It's always a good idea to explore all of the money-saving options offered at your grocery store!!