Spend Smart. Eat Smart.
Save more at the store with these helpful tools.
Make a Master Grocery List
Manage your budget and avoid impulse buying by making a list of the items you need each time you shop. Trips to the store to buy just one or two forgotten items can lead to impulse shopping. A good grocery list cuts down on these extra trips.
- Organize your list according to the store layout. This will save you time in the store and reduce the temptation to buy foods not on your list.
- Look over the recipes you plan to use. Be sure you have the necessary ingredients.
- Check the cupboards, refrigerator, and freezer for foods on hand. Are there staple items – flour, sugar, coffee, salt, rice – which should be added to the list?
- Use a printable template or a master list. If there are foods and other items that you must have every week, make them a permanent part of your master list. Check out our master list sample below to help you get started.
- Post your list in a visible location. Like the refrigerator door and jot down items as your supply gets low.
Some fruits and vegetables are less expensive when they are in season – meaning they are just ripe from the fields. When a food is in season it is typically in big supply which means the price goes down. Not only is the price lower, but often the flavor is better as well. Just picture sweet corn in the summer and apples in the fall! A trip to the local farmers market will give you clues about what is in season in your area. Shopping at your local farmers market also supports farmers near you.
Most fruits and vegetables are available year-round in the grocery store; however, prices will vary based on the season. When it comes to health benefits, all forms of fruits and vegetables are nutritious – fresh, frozen, canned, dried, and 100% juice.
- Most frozen and canned foods are processed within hours of harvest, so their flavor and nutritional value are preserved.
- Frozen and canned foods also require little preparation – washing and slicing is already done.
- When choosing canned fruits, choose those packed in water or juice as opposed to syrup. When choosing canned vegetables, look for low-sodium or no sodium added options. Rinsing canned vegetables can also remove some of the excess sodium.
- As you plan your meals and snacks each week, think about purchasing a variety of fruits and vegetables that includes fresh, frozen, and canned options.