Easy Tips on Snack Budgeting
I usually only share the meals I make and not snacks, although snacks are important to me. However, a lot of people have asked how I budget for snacks, so I have decided to share my strategy. Here is how I make sure my family still gets healthy snacks while on a budget.
Since snacks are not a necessity, I separate my snack budget from my grocery budget. This means that the amount of snacks I can afford may vary from week to week. I have an envelope for each category of expenses, including snacks, and I put some money in those every week.
Last week I put $20 into the snack budget and did not spend that money because we were going camping and did not need any snacks in the house. The week prior, I also put away $10 which I did not use.
Today is refill day, which means I will be putting another $20 in the snack budget. This means I now have a whole $50 in my snack budget, which is a lot. This is what happens after a couple of weeks that we do not get any snacks and the budget slowly builds up.
We do not snack very much, so usually the snacks we get last us quite a while. Once a need or want for new snacks arises in the house, I get the envelope and go shopping for snacks.
No matter how much money there is in my envelope, whether $50 or only $10, this is my snack budget, and I will not spend more than that.
Since I have $50 this week, I am going to buy snacks that will last me more than a week – I am planning for two weeks minimum.
My biggest tip for snack shopping is using Ibotta. I use it every time I shop for snacks, and it gets me amazing cashbacks and deals. So before I go in, I check the app for any deals relevant to me, and come to the store prepared.
They let you stack deals, too. I got a $8 bonus for buying five items, and on the Fast Twitches I got a dollar back on each one plus a dollar back for buying three of them. I do not use Ibotta for regular food because most of the options they offer are on snacks and personal hygiene, but I do sometimes get fruit for meals, such as bananas for oatmeal.
Today my total for snacks is $56.41, but take a look at my earnings: from the Ibotta bonuses, I earned $20.10 right back, which I sent to my PayPal account and then transferred to my bank account.
This is more than a third of the purchase amount that I am getting back! The more you use Ibotta, the more personalized bonuses you get, which is why I now get such huge amounts of money back on my purchases.
As you might have noticed, my total is over the sum I originally had in the envelope designated for snack shopping. The reason is that the extra $6 did not come out of our family snack budget.
My son loves his Fast Twitch, it is his favorite energy drink, and there was an Ibotta deal on them, so he decided to buy them out of his own personal budget. And yes, any drinks other than water come out of the snack budget because it is a treat.
Here is what I got today:
1. Four bottles of Brisk ice tea for 40 cents apiece
2. Two boxes of Plezi drink
3. Slim Jims
4. Sun-maid chocolate covered raisins
6. Little Debbie pumpkin delights cookies
7. Great Value blueberry cereal bars
8. Wrapples and apples to make caramel apples
15. Dried cranberries
16. Fast Twitches
Again, the total was $56.41, and I got $20.10 back with Ibotta.
Like I said, we do not snack that much, so this amount is supposed to last us a while. In order to make sure the fruit does not go bad, I wash up strawberries and grapes and put them in a little container in the fridge so the kids can take them out easily.
I also wrap the banana tips up with aluminum foil so they do not turn brown really quick. I have this big basket standing against the wall, and I usually fill the top up with snacks and the other one with fruit that does not go in the fridge.
Since we have chickens and therefore a lot of eggs, we also often snack on boiled eggs, so I wash and boil eggs and put them in the fridge as snacks.
This is how I make sure my family has something to snack on without spending too much money.
Do you use Ibotta or other cashback apps? Which one is your favorite? Do you have any other tips and tricks to save on your snacks? Feel free to leave a comment below and let us know!