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The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half: The Strategic Shopping Method Proven to Slash Food and Drugstore Costs
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The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half: The Strategic Shopping Method Proven to Slash Food and Drugstore Costs

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  415 ratings  ·  64 reviews
The creator of, with 1.6 million subscribers and counting, shares her strategic money-saving techniques for saving big while living well

Americans are hungry for bargains these days, but one woman has developed the ultimate strategy for enjoying a feast of savings. Taking the nation by storm, with appearances ranging from The Oprah Winfrey Show Stephanie Nel
Paperback, 295 pages
Published December 29th 2009 by Avery (first published 2009)
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May 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a great book on how to save money on your grocery bill. Even if you are not interested in using coupons, this book can definitely help you lower your food costs.

It's written by the owner of a couponing website, but it isn't overly promotional. She does mention her site but unlike Shop Smart; Save More by Teri Gault, it doesn't feel like an advertisement for the website.

I loved that the book gave real strategies for each type of shopper: Busy, Rookie, and Varsity. Although she definitely
Liberty Abbott-Sylvester
Apr 29, 2011 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone looking to save some money!
Recommended to Liberty by: self-recommendation
Interesting stuff but if you ask me a lot of it is just common sense. Anyone can save money you just have to have the desire to do so. If you're like me you've grown so use to convenience that you start forgetting about how much everything costs. Now, with student loans and medical bills coming due I'm having to look at my finances in a whole new way ( I needed to anyway but okay, I'm lazy and like convenience). Do I need to have a $25000 stock pile of food in my garage like some of these extrem ...more
Jun 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
I want to start by saying I'm really glad I read this book and it was well worth my time. It helped me learn how to maximize the coupon/sale combos, how to plan frugal family meals that stretch our grocery budget, where to buy specific products (like bread at bread outlets, dairy at Cosco, etc.), and how to use the Couponmom website. It also includes some great do-it-yourself recipes and a list of companies that send coupons upon request.
That said, I did have a little beef with some of it. As
Mary Ann
Jan 24, 2010 rated it really liked it
I found so much valuable information in this book. I just became a stay-at-home mom, and while I have no intentions of becoming a mega-coupon shopper, I would like to take advantage of simple ways to save my family money on food and personal products, so that we could be putting it towards more important things like saving for college (probably moving from a "busy shopper" to a "rookie shopper." Stephanie does a great job of educating us on the art of shopping, and I will be referencing it often ...more
May 11, 2010 rated it liked it
Much of the contents is fairly common sense but WOW! It had never occurred to me to just keep the entire packet of coupons from the Sunday circulars instead of the hours upon hours of clipping and filing and emptying expired coupons. Genius for that alone! Also, I had heard about website, but that requires a monthly or bi-monthly fee. is set up very similarly and is FREE! Plus, Nelson offers many websites and other methods to save.
Dec 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
Awesome book and the fact that her website is free is even more amazing. I also adore that she has an entire section at the back of the book on where to find coupons for organic foods. Also anyone who thinks that coupons are only for junk food and things they wouldn't buy hasn't been looking at coupons lately. Even more important is knowing WHEN and WHERE to buy stuff to save even more money. I definitely recommend this one! ...more
May 08, 2011 rated it really liked it
The Coupon Mom would be proud--this was a bargain book at Borders that I got at one of the stores that's closing, so it was 70% off. Such value!

Anyway, I really liked this book, because it was not just about doubling coupons and creating stockpiles. She shows how to get the best value for things, including on fresh produce and organic items. I'm so excited to try her strategies, although I refuse to walk through the grocery store with a clipboard, comparing prices.
Book Calendar
Jun 26, 2010 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 06, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: reference
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
I am new to couponing and a bit skeptical as I have a very set routine of doing my menu planning and grocery shopping, so it will majorly change the way I currently do things. I already shop at WinCo, and I hate the Oregonian, but I subscribed to Sunday only for the circulars and will see if I can save the acclaimed $50/week off my grocery bill. Maybe if all we eat is pudding and rice cakes for a month...anyway, book is well written, a lot of the stuff I already know b/c I am a budgeter, meal pl ...more
Susi Mirick
Jul 28, 2013 rated it liked it
it has a lot of good tips in it but i think she assumes a little much...some of her tips were not applicable to my family's situations and there are two whole chapters i completely skipped one being the recipes...while reading the book i did not expect to have "a cookbook section"...she could do any entire cookbook using her finds and her math skills but i do not see how they actually fit into a book like this...the other chapter i skipped was the last chapter about giving to stamp out hunger... ...more
Feb 12, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: new bargain hunters
Recommended to Jenn by: My Mom bought it for me
Maybe it's because I am already a penny pinching, bargain hunting person but I didn't find this book very helpful. I generally beleive that most coupons are for junk food that I don't want myself or family eating or that you can get a store brand item for cheaper even after using a coupon. I already shop at a bare bones grocery store so I am already getting inexpensive food. I already do meal plans and stick to a list so this wasn't anything new to me. I do like her coupon database on her websit ...more
Apr 03, 2010 rated it really liked it
This book has given me motivation to be more cautious with the money that I spend on food and to take every opportunity to look for good deals in the grocery aisles. I have even started using coupons - which I have NEVER been good about doing before this. I learned many great tips from this book and I am excited to put them to use! (Although with three young kids in tow I don't think that I will be hitting several stores a week just for the sales. Not worth it to me!)

I would recommend this book
David Warner
Apr 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: personal-finance
This book is interesting and has some good points, but I found myself skimming through the last third of the book. A lot of the book just reminded me to keep with (or return to) basic practices--setting out a meal plan before the week begins, writing out a grocery list based on that plan, and only buying what's on the grocery list. This type of basic planning may only take 1 hour a week (or is done automatically through eMealz), but we have been neglecting it. So, in the end, it was helpful to r ...more
Apr 24, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I am a coupon shopper, and read this book since I remember hearing about this woman quite a few months ago when I was just starting out couponing. I didn't really learn anything drastically new, but overall good start to couponing. I am going to try a couple of the recipes, and some of the ideas she has in looking at meat prices, organic foods, and overall just ways to save are good. I liked how she reminded me to look for the unit price. ...more
Mar 01, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: coupons, savings, shopping
Better than I thought. I have been on and off a couponer and felt like I knew most of what she had to say, but it was motivating to get me going again. She has some recipes that I liked, the only thing I've started doing differently after reading this is buying whole carrots and peeling them, and buying head lettuce instead of the prewashed Costco mix. I borrowed this from a friend who is starting to coupon and I do think its a great help for a newcomer to couponing. ...more
Apr 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010-books
I am a big coupon shopper and really hoped to find some additional secrets to what I am already doing to teach me how to save more. Although, I really did not find any extra tips, but it was great to catch coupon mom's vision of using couponing to feed the hungry. I realized I could do a lot better on donating and being mindful of others when I have more than I need it was a good reminder. ...more
May 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I learned how to use coupons to get things free or pretty darn close. I've already put some of the practices to work and "bought" 2 free Degree deodorants and a free Nivea body wash, along with another deodorant for .88 and another Nivea body wash for $1.24. This book will pay for itself in no time at this rate! ...more
Apr 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I have been couponing for many years,but quickly found new tips in this book. I especially liked that hints were geared towards three groups: those with very little time to spend saving, those just starting out and those who were veteran couponers. Definitely a worthwhile read for anyone who wants to stretch their budget.
Apr 29, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, 2011
I am a big coupon shopper, so I picked up this book to see if I could get some additional tips. While many of the topics this author covered were things I did, there was somethings that I plan to incorporate into my future purchases. If you are on a tight budget and don't use coupons this book will give you some great tips. ...more
May 09, 2011 rated it liked it
I don't like to buy a lot of junk/prepared foods and have always thought that is what you had to buy with coupons. I liked her philosophy on preparing and planning meals with the weekly sales and using coupons. I also thought her marketing background was insightful on how and what to look for when shopping to help save money. I'm willing to try it and see. ...more
Jul 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
I am a minimal coupon user. I am really interested in the process of how to make these little pieces of paper work for me. Stephanie Nelson explains it all so simply. I found myself taking notes for websites to explore and recipes to try. I really enjoyed reading this book. I feel I've learned a tremendous amount. I am now on my way to saving money on my grocery bills and local pharmacy as well! ...more
Aug 13, 2014 rated it liked it
There was some valuable advice in this book, but I was surprised at how much of it I already knew. I'll try out the newspaper insert system since that's her biggest strategy. One thing that was kind of annoying was how much she repeated herself--why do these self-help/how-to books use so much repetition? I was paying attention the first three times, thanks... ...more
Jan 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
Stephanie Nelson is a true expert in helping you save money at shopping and cooking. She has REAL advice, that really works-- and any shopper can learn new tricks to save, even if you don't want to become as expert as her. ...more
May 16, 2010 rated it it was ok
I learned some useful tips, but a lot of things were kinda obvious to me. The amount of time and planning involved in clipping coupons to save 50% off groceries makes me tired, and I don't really want 40 tubes of toothpaste in my garage anyway. ...more
Aug 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Very good information. A lot of her tips were things I already do or knew about, but still, it was a good read. Very light reading, and it does open your eyes to the many different ways to save money.
Nov 28, 2010 rated it liked it
If you are just learning how to meal plan/grocery shop this is a great resource. Lots of store specific information, and lots of appendices in the back with good lists and more resources.
Not much new information for me though. A lot of it is available at her website too.
May 29, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: food, non-fiction
The first third of the book is interesting. Bargain hunters and meal planners will find some useful websites and tips. The last 2/3 is her going into detail on various categories of food, which is already covered in the first portion.
Nov 19, 2011 rated it did not like it
"America's Cheapest Family" does a better job of explaining coupons. This mom isn't really giving away her secrets...and that is where exactly she gets her coupons and how exactly they all add up. This book didn't really have any substance or good advice. ...more
Feb 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
My husband bought this for me (gee, thanks) but I was happily surprised! I feel more organized and we have been saving a minimum of $400/month after two months. P.S. I hardly ever use more than 3 coupons... her non-couponing suggestions have helped so much!
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