The Ultimate Canadian Grocery Savings Guide | Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide

Do you buy magazines at the check-out?: The grocery game challenge #4 June 23-29, 2014

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Not everyone falls prey to the marketing ploy of magazines at the check-out although there are many of you that just can’t go without your weekly or even daily dose of  “worldly news”.

We do not subscribe to magazines so unless it is a free magazine like “Melt magazine” or “Ingredients Magazine” it will never end up in our shopping cart.

Although those magazines in Canada revolve around food they are not costing us any money. Maybe that means we are boring people?

With the internet at our finger tips you can find just about anything you need to know online. You can pretty much find free magazines online which will give you hours of reading entertainment.

Magazines are not cheap either as you can expect to pay anywhere from $2-$5 and then some just to read something and toss it in the garbage.


Magazine fever


I notice my wife falls prey to the celebrity gossip magazines while waiting at the check-out and will look at In Style magazine, Chatelaine magazine and Canadian Living magazine. She has never bought a magazine though and to be honest I just don’t think she ever will.

On occasion she may pick up Money Sense to flip through only because we’ve had a few free subscriptions just for being a Rogers customer. I do like Money Sense magazine although I’m not sure I’d pay money to learn about saving money when I can borrow from the library for free. I guess it depends on the person.

I remember reading somewhere a wife mentioned that her husband has to have the paper version of the newspaper every day to make him happy. He apparently had no interest reading it online and that’s fair. If it’s something you’re used to doing for many years and it makes you happy and not putting you in the money dog house, then enjoy your money splurges.


Frugal and free magazines


Rogers magazines are a decent price if you are a Rogers customer however we’ve never felt the need to order them. If there are any Rogers promotions where they offer our choice of magazines free then we’ll gladly read them.

I won’t lie and say I don’t notice the magazines at the cash register because I do. Most times I’m having a laugh at the headlines, “How to live longer by eating this miracle fruit” or other odd attempts to capture your attention so you spend the money to read what is in the magazine. If you are like most customers who are bored you pick up the magazine and read it while waiting in line.

I know this drives other customers and the staff bonkers but hey, people will keep themselves occupied if they have to. Post a sign if you don’t want customers inspecting the merchandise, lol. If you go to Shoppers Drug Mart most of their stores have a massive magazine section which we’ve seen people hang out at. If you need a Chapters fix you can read magazines there as well before you buy them.

It’s a frugal way to get your fix and move on out the door saving you money in the budget. Other ways to save money on magazines is to check out your local second-hand shops for earlier subscriptions.

Even though they may be older they still hold information that you might enjoy. I know the library has magazines you can read or borrow as well as picking them up garage sales for cheap. If you are lucky you will find a magazine ‘o’ holic who puts them in a box on the curb with a Free sign. That’s your chance to swoop in and grab some free magazines and read until you just can’t get enough.

Some of the best magazine subscriptions out there that aren’t just filled with gossip rather educational material which is great. I enjoy looking at photographs and reading about adventures although I can get that high online for free. Well, it’s not free since we pay for internet services but why spend more if you don’t have to. I’m pretty sure anything you read in a magazine will be somewhere online.

I’m not saying buying magazines is wrong especially if it’s a hobby of yours or you have the cash to splash on them but what I’m saying is there are ways to save when buying magazines to get your fix.

If you are hell-bent on buying magazines at least look for an online magazine code or a subscription discount that way you are paying less for the cost of the magazine. I know many of you might say you only buy it once in a while but that once in a while might add up to a full-year of subscription if you are paying full price at the cash register.

Magazines want your business so don’t be afraid to look for the best deal online and save some moola!

  • Do you buy magazines?
  • What are your favourite magazines?
  • What ways can we find discounts on magazines?


June grocery game challenge posts


If you missed any grocery game posts for the month I will post the line-up for the month each week here in this section for you. Join in the Grocery Game Challenge fun and post your grocery shop in the comment section of each blog post… here are the GGC rules! Each month I hold a draw and one WINNER is chosen.  I will post the winners name right here so make sure to check back every week.


Grocery saving tips


Click, Save and Print. It’s that easy!

Free Money Saving Downloads are awesome lists that were created to get us on track to work towards reaching our budgeting goals and now we are sharing them with you.

I hope you take the time to get back on track and start the savings process in your grocery budget today.

Get organized with a FREE freezer inventory, meal plan, shopping list, price comparison list and much more all for FREE. CLICK HERE to download all the free lists and even our family budget spreadsheet for FREE.

NEW!! You can now download the FREE Canadian Budget Binder Budget Spreadsheet in Excel…Grab it while you can… It’s FREE! We use it to budget and in large part a reason we were able to pay our mortgage off in 5 years, check it out!


Ultimate grocery shopping guide


Everything you want to know about grocery shopping in Canada is below with new information added monthly.

If you missed a Grocery Game Challenge post some of the most popular posts are listed below or you can now find the posts listed on their own page called The Ultimate Grocery Shopping Guide.

If you know a topic that should be discussed send me an email and let me know.


Food food and more food



If you are a foodie like I am you will enjoy going through my Free Recipe Index where recipes from CBB foodie Nicola and myself are shared every Sunday on the blog. Check it out! Try a recipe and leave a review for other fans!


Grocery game challenge groceries


Shoppers Drugmart

  • 2x 4L of Neilson Milk $3.97
  • 2x Large dozen eggs Sale $1.99 each

Total out-of-pocket $7.94


  • No name evaporated milk $1.49
  • Graham cracker crumbs $4.59 club size
  • PC Greek cream cheese Sale $2.99 each
  • Western Sour Cream $3.69-50% off sticker
  • 4 x salted butter Sale $2.99 each
  • Astro Greek Yogurt $3.99-50% off pink sticker

Total out-of-pocket $27.85


  • Halal Dahl Plain yogurt sale $1.99
  • Selection Pitted dates $2.99
  • 2 x Reduced produce orange and yellow peppers $0.99
  • Liberte Coconut Yogurt $3.49 (my splurge, mmm) + $0.25 snap saves (did you see this Jen <<<< 🙂
  • Blueberry pint sale $2.50
  • Sweet corn 2/$5.00
  • Reduced produce Granny Smith Apples $0.99
  • 1x grocery bag- forgot my bags.. oops! $0.05

Total out-of-pocket $19.00


  • Watermelon $3.97
  • 2 x Sesame oil $5.77 (the best we’ve found is here)
  • Limes $0.94
  • Cabbage $1.41
  • Romaine Lettuce hearts $1.97
  • Spinach $1.47
  • Cucumbers Sale $0.77 each
  • Fennel $1.67
  • Red onion $1.19
  • Seedless Grapes Sale $1.87
  • Tomatoes Sale $2.05
  • Salsa $2.97
  • Frozen corn $2.47
  • Philadelphia cream cheese double Sale $3.47
  • Croutons $1.88
  • 2 x Plantains $0.95
  • Real Lime juice $2.27
  • Barilla Linguine Sale $0.94- $0.75 coupon

Total out-of-pocket $45.59


Grocery shop results


Yearly grocery budget for two: $2820

(The above total does not include the stockpile budget of $240 per year or $20 per month.)

  • Total Grocery Budget for the Month: $235.00 or $78.33 week with potentially one no-shop week per month or $58.75 for 4 weeks per month. (During the months with 5 weeks we just make it work)
  • Total Budget for June $235.00-$20.89=$225.49/4=$56.37 per week or $75.16 per week if we do 1 no-shop week.
  • Total Coupons Used this Week : $0.75
  • Total Coupons Used to date: $41.00
  • Total Discounts this Week: $3.85
  • Total Discounts Used to date: $43.61
  • Total Gift Cards Used to date: $33.18
  • Total Rewards Points Used: $0
  • Total Rewards Points Used to date: $20.00
  • Stockpile Budget ($20.00): $20.00
  • Stockpile Budget Used to Date: $20.00+$19.08+$17.94+ $2.06+$20.00+$15.10 + $20.00 (June)
  • Snap Saves to date: $0.25
  • Total Spent This Week: $100.38
  • Total Spent So Far June: $71.21+ $67.10+$36.68+$100.38=$275.37
  • Total Over/Under spend this shop: over $49.88
  • Total Over/Under spend for the month: over $49.88
  • Total Left to Spend for the Month: $0
  • Total to Carry Over Next Month: -$49.88
  • Total Spent To Date This Year: (does not include stockpile budget) Jan $242.66+ Feb $191.74+ March $255.82+April $235.07+May $223.62+June $275.37
  • Weekly Overview:  Wow we sure did go over this month but let me explain. We had an unexpected gathering to attend so I made a cherry cheesecake as well as a salad to bring along. Without the extra expense of the dessert and salad we would have been fine this month. We don’t go to many gatherings and for this one my cheesecake was requested by all so I had no problem with bringing it. We will have to make up the difference now in our budget but we discussed it and are fine with that since we have plenty of stockpile to eat up. If we didn’t have the room in our budget we would have declined and brought something in accordance to what we could afford for our grocery budget.


Coupon Sleuth


Did you find any coupons? If so share the details in the comment section of this post where you found it and what the coupon is for with expiry.

June coupons grocery game canada

Frequently Asked Questions


  • Grocery Game Challenge RULES: Read the rules first and if you have any questions email me or comment on this post with your question and someone will answer you as soon as possible.
  • Do I have to be Canadian to post my Grocery Shop?: No, you don’t have to be Canadian to post your shops only to win a monthly prize. We have fans who post their grocery shop who live all over the world.
  • When does the Grocery Game close each month?: The Grocery Game Challenge closes at midnight of the last Sunday of the last post for the month. You can post your shops all month-long.
  • Does your Grocery Budget include health and beauty and laundry products?: Yes our Grocery Budget includes such items as shampoo, conditioner, laundry soap, fabric softener, dish soap etc. We don’t mind stockpiling items that won’t be affected by expiry dates or have long expiry dates but not so much food any more. It’s just one way to help cut your budget to save money.
  • What is an FPC?: An FPC is a free product coupon which means you can get a free product as described on the coupon.
  • How Do I Grocery Shop?: I can tell you about grocery shopping and what we do in terms of shopping to save money and how it works for us. There are no wrong or right answers, just smart choices.

Over time you will gradually learn where you should and shouldn’t go in the grocery store or at least how to say no, I’m on a budget I need to buy this or that.

You may also substitute items in order to stick to your grocery budget to make it work. Nobody is perfect, heck we struggle with this part of our budget like many people do.

This is why the grocery game challenge was created to not only show you that we are like everyone else but to bring us all together to work as a team to get our budgets on track.

If you have just joined The Grocery Game Challenge 2014 get ready to dive deep into your grocery budget and learn just where you are spending, how much you are spending and what you are saving.

Feel free to read all the above posts that I linked to above which I feel are relevant to learning about the grocery budget and grocery shopping in general.

You’ve made a wise decision to take control of your grocery budget now show me your shops and let’s get saving!

Welcome to The Grocery Game Challenge Canada 2014!



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