With the cost of living soaring, we're all looking for ways to cut down the cost of our weekly shopping trips.
One woman who uses a genius 'lolly stick trick' says her brilliant idea saves her up to £40 per week on food.
Billie Hoey, 25, from Nuneaton, says her and her fiancé Adam were 'stuck in a rut' when it came to food shopping, and always ended up impulse-buying expensive food.
In a bid to switch up their options – and save some money in the process – Billie came across an idea on Pinterest, aimed at encouraging kids to do their chores.
“During lockdown I started looking on Pinterest for ways to organise the home to keep myself busy and came across an idea for encouraging kids to do their chores by writing each one down on a lolly stick and getting them to pick one for the day. I thought that it would work really well as a tool for planning and picking meals," Billie told Latestdeals.co.uk.
“Before we discovered the idea, I was spending around £50-70 a week on food shopping and afterwards it reduced to £30-50. The amount we save can depend on the meals we pick, as those featuring red meat, such as steak, tend to be more expensive."
The couple write down all their favourite meals on lolly sticks and select seven at random to buy for the week ahead.
“I also wrote down all the ingredients needed for each meal on the backs of the sticks to make it even easier to plan our weekly meals,” she said. “We have around 40 now and we keep on adding ideas. I keep the sticks in a mug in the kitchen cupboard, but you could get creative and create a wall display so the whole family can see what the plan is for the week ahead.”
As well as sticking to a tighter budget, the trick has helped the couple introduce more variety into their meals.
“We were forever ending up with the same quick meals, which does get boring pretty quickly. Having the lolly sticks takes the decision-making element out of the mix. Plus, it reminds us of some of the meals we had enjoyed in the past but forgotten about," Billie added.
“If you have children, you could involve them by adding their favourite meals and getting them to blind pick weekly from the sticks to encourage them to plan."
We're definitely trying this.