How to Coupon for Groceries

Updated: Nov. 24, 2023

Need to stick to a grocery budget? Learn how to coupon.

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It’s happening all over the country: rising food prices put a strain on household budgets. And while you can’t control the costs at the grocery store, learning how to coupon for groceries could help you take back some control of your finances. Read on for expert tips that will have you couponing like a pro before you know it!

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Pull coupons from multiple sources

For experienced couponers, collecting coupons is a fun experience in itself. However, you might not realize in the beginning that you can pull coupons from multiple sources—manufacturers and stores.

Most people are familiar with manufacturer coupons. You can clip these from newspapers and weekly ads that show up in your mailbox. There are numerous websites you can visit online to print manufacturer coupons too, like Many retailers also offer store-specific coupons inside of their apps, making it easier to grocery shop on a budget.

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Read the fine print

The fine print is where you’ll find the rules for coupon redemption. However, it’s important to note that sometimes these rules can be confusing. Consider the “limit one coupon per purchase” rule as an example. Even with this statement in the fine print, you might be able to stack store coupons and manufacturer coupons together for the same product and add more potential savings on your purchase.

There are many more secret grocery shopping tips to help stretch your budget as far as possible. But if you want to learn how to coupon for groceries, it’s important to read the fine print.

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Learn the store’s coupon policy

Before you show up at your local grocery store with a stockpile of coupons in hand, it’s helpful to research the store’s coupon policy. Then you’ll be able to take advantage of those benefits to try to save money on groceries. Plus, if you’re prepared, it will hopefully make the checkout process move more smoothly for you and the employee at the register.

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Look at your receipts

Often the receipts you receive at the grocery store contain coupons you can use for future purchases. Be sure to look over your receipts after you leave the checkout line. If they contain coupons for products you and your family use, save them for future purchases!

While you’re looking over your receipt, you might also want to consider your grocery shopping habits. Sometimes a few small tweaks can result in huge savings over time.

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Make a list ahead of time

Before you shop, go through your coupons and make a list of what you plan to buy. Completing this exercise in advance can help you stay organized when you arrive at the store, and help you avoid forgetting any purchases you needed to make. You can also try making a reverse grocery list while you’re at home and write down food items you already have so you don’t accidentally rebuy them.

Something important to keep in mind: Even if you have a coupon in your wallet, you might not need that extra jar of pickles taking up space in your pantry. Don’t feel like you have to buy something just because you have a coupon for it.

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Pay attention to expiration dates

Most coupons don’t last forever. Pay attention to when those money-saving pieces of paper in your wallet or binder expire. If you save a lot of coupons, develop of system of ordering them according to their expiration date. This can help you stay organized, and you can purge any coupons you don’t use after they are no longer valid. Looking for other ways to save money on groceries? Learn the best day of the week to go grocery shopping.

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Download coupon apps

Of course, you can unlock couponing secrets with your phone as well! Your smartphone can be a great tool to download grocery shopping apps—both coupon apps and store apps. Use them to access manufacturer coupons, store coupons, loyalty programs, rewards programs, discount codes and more. You can often combine multiple discounts together to amplify the savings potential.

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Patrol the clearance aisle

Research the clearance section (in-store and online) and see if you there any products you need. If you can stack those items with coupons or discount codes, even better.

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Track your savings

Couponing can take a lot of time—time you could be using to earn money, relax or do something fun. Track your savings and make sure the effort you put in is worthwhile. You can find spreadsheets from coupon experts (for free or a fee) to help calculate your savings. Or you could use a notepad on your phone or pen and paper to keep tabs on your savings.