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How to get Free and Super Cheap Food!

How to get Free and Super Cheap Food!

What if you Could get Your Groceries for Free? How Much Could you Save?

Groceries take up a huge chunk of the household budget.

Below I have shared discount codes, coupons and tips to reduce your groceries.

I’ve also shared how to reduce the cost of groceries in 2023 plus how to reduce food waste.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.

I do have a few affiliate links in this post. Find out full disclosure here.

Note: If you like freebies and discounts, check out how to get a $100 cash bonus from ING, $14 from Up Bank or have a look at the full list of freebies, offers and discounts for every state.

Get your first box free with HelloFresh.

Get up to $180 off EveryPlate, split across your first 5 boxes with the code THRIFTYEPLATE.

Get up to $144 off Dinnerly (49% off your first order, then 30% off the next two.)

Marley Spoon offers up to $190 off 4 orders! That’s 53% off your first order, and 20% off your next three.

Funky Food is a new delivery service offering boxes of produce that are heavily discounted compared to the supermarkets.

The fruit and vegetables are high quality but all different shapes instead of ‘supermarket perfect’. Check out Funky Food and get discounted fruit and veg now.

1. Discounts + Free Delivery

Gift cards regularly go on sale at the supermarkets and through other programs such as NRMA etc.

Buy gift cards for the places you shop when they are discounted and you save money instantly.

Plus some of them are connected to rewards programs so you get more money off future shops.

Do a search for any discounts, special offers, coupons and free delivery offers whenever you are shopping.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.
Image of cheesecake. Text reads how to get free and super cheap food.

2. Play the Shops Against Each Other

Humans are creatures of habit, but this can result in lost savings!

Spread your shopping between the supermarkets and you will get sent better offers.

Sign up for FlyBuys, Everyday Rewards and whatever other loyalty programs you find for your supermarkets.

Check out the comparison between Everyday Rewards, Everyday Extra, Flybuys and Coles Plus for more tips to save.

Do not shop at the same one every week for your whole shop. Instead, shop at one for a few weeks, then another or split your shopping between Coles, Woolworths, Aldi and anywhere else.

Supermarkets track how you shop, how much you spend, what you buy and send offers accordingly.

The more you spend in one store, the more you will have to spend to get great rewards.

Supermarkets regularly send out offers such as spending $xx for the next 3 weeks to get 10,000 points!

If you only spend $50 at each shop, they will only ask you to spend $60 or something similar to your regular spending habits.

If you regularly spend over $100 they will want you to spend $120 or $150 each week to get the same deal!

By splitting your shopping, buying only what is on sale and using your reward cards, you maximise the discounts supermarkets will give you.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.
Image of pasta dishes on white table. Text reads how to get free and super cheap food.

3. Get Cash Back

There are various cashback sites that are free to join and scan to see if you can get cash or discounts on the sites you visit.

Through cash back programs, you can get cash back on your grocery shop if done online.

They are all free to join, easy to use and offer various discounts throughout the year.

CashRewards: Is by far my favourite as it usually has the highest cash back offer, the payments are processed easily and customer services has been good.

Simply join CashRewards for free, activate it when you see the cash back offer and get a bonus $20 cash back with your first purchase over $20.

Shopback: Works the same as CashRewards. You can only activate and use one so I compare to see which one is offering me a better deal.

Join Shopback for free and get a bonus after your first purchase through them too.

Honey: Slightly different, Honey offers cash back but also scans for discounts and coupon codes. Join Honey for free here.

Swagbucks: Best known as an online survey site, they also have a cash back program with the cash being awarded in points you accrue and cash out. Join free here.

ReceiptJar: This is for after your purchase is final. Upload your receipt and get points. Once you reach 1,000 points you can get a gift card.

Join free with the code KYLIT3QH2 and get a bonus 200 points when you upload your first receipt.

You can also earn points for gift cards through ReceiptJar. Join free with the code KYLIT3QH2 and get a bonus 200 points when you upload your first receipt.

4. Search Deal Sites

Groupon is free to join and it has massive discounts on hampers, toiletries and other groceries items regularly, plus I have seen discount gift cards for Woolworths.

Check deal sites regularly or set up alerts for food-related discounts.

Catch is another one that often has bulk items on sale but always compare prices.

Don’t forget Amazon. They have subscriptions for items you use a lot such as nappies as well as huge discounts, free delivery and bonuses.

I’m a Prime member and it pays for itself every month.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.

5. Access Birthday and Similar Freebies

We have a huge list of Aussie birthday freebies here, many of which are meals.

These aren’t ongoing options but good around your birthday (and for other family members if you get everyone signed up!)

Some require you to be a member for a month or more before your birthday to get the freebie so make sure you sign up in time.

Check the dates the offers expire and plan to use them based on this.

Get a $100 Bonus from ING

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Open an everyday account and put the promo code CNW116 in the promo box (you must use the code to get the $100 bonus) and complete all the steps below in the first month.
  2. Deposit $1,000 into the account such as your income or Centrelink payments
  3. Make 5 settled transactions
  4. Open a Savings Maximiser (current interest rate is 5.5%)
  5. Make a deposit into the Savings Maximiser

Then you get your $100 the following month when the promotion is running. Promotion periods vary. The current promotion runs until October 31, 2023.

6. Try Samples

Keep an eye out for free samples in store and on the social media pages of different brands.

If you are a member of Flybuys or Everyday Extra you are likely to get free offers too.

You can check out our full list of freebies here and we share any we come across on our Facebook page here as well as our Facebook group here.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.
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7. Mystery Shopping

Mystery shopping involves you going to a shop on behalf of a company, purchasing what they ask, possibly take photos and filling out a form about it.

It can be time-consuming but it can also provide groceries, food, and even holidays. Find out more here.

8. Foraging

I am not a dumpster diver but I have foraged berries, herbs and similar produce growing in the wild or asked neighbours if we can pick fruit they clearly aren’t picking.

One of the most expensive restaurants in Melbourne bases their menu on what ia foraged.

You might be surprised at how much can be foraged and the things in your area that are edible.

Find out where to get fruit, herbs and vegetables through this map.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.
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9. Receipts and Surveys

Some shops offer discounts or points if you complete a survey after your shop. It’s not much but every little bit adds up.

You can also earn points for gift cards through ReceiptJar. Join free with the code KYLIT3QH2 and get bonus 200 points when you upload your first receipt.

10. Coupons and Offers

If you thought Australia doesn’t have coupons or amazing discounts, think again.

We have listed ways to get coupons and discounts here plus a post here on how to get discounts on everything!

Not all of it applies to groceries, but you’d be surprised at what is out there.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.
Image of berry parfait. Text reads how to get free or super cheap food.

11. Enter Competitions

I’ve won hampers, meals, restaurant vouchers, snack packs and other food through blog giveaways and other competitions.

While you won’t win all the time, you have to be in it to win it.

I’ve found blog and social media giveaways are easier to win plus tend to have a wide variety of options.

Check out where to find the best Aussie comps and giveaways to enter.

12. Barter

Do you have something you can swap for food? Maybe you grow herbs and can barter with next door for some plums?

Bartering doesn’t need to be limited to swapping similar things, you can swap services such as mowing someone’s lawn, babysitting, cleaning or anything else.

It’s a matter of doing an exchange you are both happy with.

13. End Of Day Freebies

Some restaurants, bakeries, cafes and other food businesses offer end of the day freebies or massive discounts.

Some pass the day-old bread onto churches and similar. Find out who does it in your area and how you can access it.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.
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14. Food Banks and Community Pantries

If you are in need, there are specific food banks and community pantries available to assist those who cannot afford groceries.

Proof of being on a pension, having a low income or other needs may be necessary to gain access to it.

At Christmas, there are many who will open their doors and allow you to pre-order hampers as well which can include meat.

My recommendation is to leave these options unless you are truly are in need.

Being frugal is fun, be ethical about it though. Don’t be too proud to access any services if you are in need though!

15. Points From Survey Sites

Some survey sites will let you convert the points into gift cards at stores such as Big W, Dan Murphy’s and Wish gift cards which you can then use on groceries.

A few who do this are Octopus Group, Swagbucks and PrizeRebel.

16. Go To The Markets As They Close

If you head to a farmer or produce market just before it closes you will often find everything drastically reduced.

We get our meat for less than wholesale prices this way, free-range eggs for a fraction of the cost in stores and large boxes of fruit and vegetables for the price of one kilo of the produce normally.

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.

17. Community Groups

Join your local community groups and pay it forward style groups on Facebook.

At times free food comes up as people have too much in their garden or got a great deal etc.

Always be polite and make sure you are giving other things in those groups, not just taking.

18. Warehouses/Factories

Look for bulk food warehouses or suppliers in your area. I used to make bread and other pastries for my family.

When I did, I bought direct from a bakery supplier for significantly less than the supermarket.

Check all warehouses, cold storage places and factories in your area to see if they sell to the public at a discount.

Get on their mailing list for when they have sales too.

19. Shops Other Than Supermarkets

The Reject Shop and similar shops often have brands that have changed their packaging and are no longer being sold in the big supermarkets.

I’ve picked up items which would normally cost $15 for 50cents instead.

20. Repurposes Scraps

How much of the food you are throwing away could be used for something?

Potato skins can be fried with spices to make chips. Pumpkin seeds can be roasted for a snack.

Seeds from some plants can be grown into new plants, peels can become fertiliser etc.

Use everything instead of throwing so much away.

Check out the zero-waste movement and look at this article on how to stop food waste for loads of ideas on how to turn scraps into something.

21. Grow Your Own

It’s not free to set up but can be fairly cheap and can change how you eat. Fresh herbs are expensive but they are so easy to grow.

In fact, if you get herbs from the supermarket with the roots still attached, you can grow them at home. Think about the herbs you use most often and grow them.

Salad items such as cos and loose leaf lettuce is great to grow and use what you need as needed.

Check out these 9 things to grow to save you money.

How do you get free food? 

How to reduce the cost of groceries by getting free and super cheap food.
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For more ways to make and save money follow us on social media:

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Jo Carson

Friday 22nd of February 2019

Thank you for all the work you do. I read almost everything you write, even when it sounds familiar. I find I often forget things which I KNOW I've read before, and not put into practice.

The Thrifty Issue

Sunday 24th of February 2019

Thank you, Jo! That means so much to me x

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