Power saving tips for the kitchen
Stoves and ovens use a lot of power. Some simple changes to the way you cook can really help trim your power bill. Trim your power bill with these easy tips.
- Use a small pot on a small element, and a large pot on a large element.
- Always use pot lids – and make sure they fit.
- Cook food on the stove top instead of in the oven.
- Invest in a slow cooker or a pressure cooker for casseroles, soups, and anything else that requires long, slow cooking.
- Make boiling water do double-duty by popping a steamer on top for veggies.
- Microwaves cook food faster and cheaper. Try microwave baked potatoes – yum!
- Make sure fridge and freezer doors close properly. Stick a torch inside at night and shut the door to check the seals.
- Check the fridge/freezer temperature and adjust it accordingly.
- Don't overload the fridge – it needs air circulating to cool properly. Your freezer is happier full of food – if it’s empty consider freezing ice cream containers full of water.
- Cool food down quickly before putting in the fridge or freezer.
- When the oven is on, cook several items. For example, a casserole, muffins, home-made muesli and baked potatoes
- Cook two meals at once! Get in the habit of cooking double-lots of bolognaise and other mince dishes. The leftovers can be reheated cheaply in the microwave, or frozen.
Your budgeting tips
Need some inspiration from fellow shoppers? View the budgeting tips provided by PAK'nSAVE fans. We asked for your savings tips, and you shared some unique ideas!
- Lisette M recommends you “Make a weekly menu. Only shop for the food required for the menu. No wastage.” Susan B likes to “Have a list on the fridge, when something is opened write it on the list so you know you need to replace it, saves rushing around making a list.” Jodi T also reckons it's a good idea to "stock-take before you go so you don't double up on what you already have".
- Sharon N is VERY organised! “We use a pre-printed shopping list. We've typed up all the usual things we buy on a table/excel spreadsheet and we have it arranged in the order of the aisles of the PAK'nSAVE we go to. So as we go along the aisles we know what we need to get as we walk past. We just circle on the list. Or for example under "Baking Needs" we might write beside it Wholemeal flour, or sugar etc. Helps avoid missing things”
- Maureen L does her research: "Check out before you go shopping what is on special offer or in season, and then plan the weeks menu's around those items."
- Rachel W likes to “Plan meals in advance, buy basics is bulk and sign up for the emails to get all the best deals."
- Tracey B recommends you “Join the PAK'nSAVE Christmas Club - they do automatic payments so win win.”
Get Shop Smart
- Aaron D says “Make sure when looking at an item to check the price per 100grams. You may be shocked to discover that many sale items are still more expensive than other brands when comparing it by weight. I will even pay a little more on the day if I know I am getting more product at a cheaper price by weight in total.” Diane C says “Always check multi pack toilet rolls, they are shorter per roll which adds up to more than two rolls less than other smaller packs.”
- Valerie M likes to “have a price limit for each item and know what you need and want you want if you cannot find it for that price or under (price per item) don’t get it.”
- Deborah S likes to “Eat a full lunch or dinner then go shopping with a list. You spend less, you’re not hungry so you don’t look a sugar quick fixes to nibble on in car on way home.” Dean J says "always make a shopping list and stick to it."
- Anne M prefers to “Shop with cash. Concentrates the mind on what is necessary (and what is not).” Tracy N likes to “Take a calculator to the supermarket so there is no surprise at the checkout”, while Anne D recommends one "so you can work out the best deals".
- Vanessa S says “Best way to save money is do your food shopping alone… then there is no one else to help spend your money buy sneaking extras into the trolley!”
- Hineari B says “Because a lot of meat isn't cheap I buy small portions and bulk up meals with pasta/rice and frozen and/or canned vegetables which are non-perishables and can be called upon anytime.”
- Paul J prefers to “Plan your menus around the fruit and veg that are in season.” Sandra V says “When making bolognese mince or chilli mince, I add in a cup of pre-cooked red lentils. They have great protein and stretch the mince a lot further.”
- Raewyn M recommends “Include 2 'meatless meals’ a week if you can.” Sarah H, likes to “Buy reduced meat and freeze it.” Sharon G uses the freezer for something else: “Bulk buy cheese/s grate, then freeze in usable sizes. Defrost in the fridge. Use!!!”