The grocery store is one of your biggest expenses of time and money. So why aren’t you making a better plan?
Just a few simple tricks will improve your chances that you’ll buy only what you need, and you’ll never have to go back for what you forgot.
Whether you shop weekly or monthly, a five-minute planning session can dramatically improve how your groceries affect your wallet, and it’ll probably save you a little sanity too. Read on…
- Keep a journal where you can list of all the meals you can remember over the past week(s). This step jogs your memory and serves as a useful reference for choosing this week’s meals
- Always use your previous list when planning meals for this week. Having a set meal plan ensures you will spend money only on food you will eat this week, saving you money – especially on perishable items
- Write a list of food items needed to make up your meals. List each meal’s major items, like meat, and list it down to the smallest ingredients, like salt
- Always do this step in your kitchen so that you can quickly inventory your pantry and refrigerator. Be sure to consult your monthly calendar for any upcoming events that may throw off your meal schedule.
- Need meal ideas? Here are some healthy meal recipes from the Food Network http://www.foodnetwork.com/healthy-eating/index.html
- Shop the perimeter: you’ll find the healthiest and best value food on the outer aisles. It’s a good idea to learn the layout of your store so you don’t have to backtrack for missed items
- No child’s play: studies show that grocery shopping with your kids actually cause you to spend more
- Create a Shopping Kit: keep an envelope or folder in a kitchen drawer containing reward cards, coupons, and shopping list. Just grab it and go. At the very least, always bring a pen so you can check items off your list as you go
- Save your list for next week: many of the common food items will repeat
- Coordinate your trip: maximize your trip by working in other errands such as the dry cleaners, car wash, or school drop-offs
What’s your secret to painless grocery store trips? Please share with us by commenting.