Grocery Shopping TipsPosted: September 17, 2012
This morning, I drove back up from Connecticut to work in New Hampshire. The ride was easy peasy again; I’m really starting to like this routine.
I picked up a couple chocolate munchkins with my Monday morning Dunkin Donuts hot tea, and I planned to hold on to them until I got to work, but obviously that didn’t happen. I ate them before I even made it out of Massachusetts and since I was driving, well, there’s no picture.
But I did have a late morning snack a little later on at my desk: Raspberry Chobani with sliced strawberries. I knew I’d be going grocery shopping during my lunch and I didn’t want to be starving, and this snack proved to be the right decision because I wasn’t even tempted (okay, not that much anyway) by any of the goodies at the store.
Sunday used to be my grocery shopping day, but since I’ve been commuting back from Billy’s on Monday mornings, Monday night had become my grocery shopping time. It makes for a long day though when I also have to get my workout in afterwards, so today I decided to see if I could get it done on my lunch hour.
I usually only take a half hour to eat my lunch, but the full hour ended up working out perfectly and I checked a big thing off my weekly to-do list. I definitely think it’s going to become part of my normal routine from now on.
Why grocery shopping on your lunch break is awesome:
- There’s no one else in the store so navigating the aisles and getting through the check out line is a breeze
- You don’t have to go after work when you’re starving for dinner and apt to grab everything on the shelves
- There’s less traffic on the road and more spaces to park
- There’s not enough time to wander or browse, so only things on the list make it in the cart
- You feel accomplished before the day’s even over
- It doesn’t take time away from doing other fun things at night
- The cashiers are friendlier because it’s not “rush hour”
It’s definitely different when you’re shopping for more than one person, but here are some of my other more general grocery shopping tips:
- Make a meal plan and then use that to assess what you already have and write your shopping list
- Think about the different meal components (breakfasts, lunches, snacks, dinners, sides, desserts) and all the different food groups to make sure you don’t miss anything
- Write your list according to the layout of the store; For example, mine always goes fruit, vegetables, meat, dairy, other (processed foods) because that’s how I move around the store
- Plan out when you’ll eat what and how long things will last to avoid over-buying and having things go to waste
- Try to remember how much of something you actually can/do use during a given week so you know how much to buy next time
I wrote up a really rough meal plan last night and then made my shopping list for the week:
- 5 Apples, Strawberries,
BlueberriesRaspberries (on sale)
- 1 Green pepper, 1 Cucumber, Spinach (2 for $5 so one bag went straight to the freezer), Iceburg lettuce, Butternut squash, Green beans
- Chicken breasts/tenders (boneless/skinless)
- Vanilla Chocolate Chunk Chobani yogurt, Skim milk
Plus I already had a few things in the fridge:
- 2 green peppers, 1 zucchini, 2 plum tomatoes, ½ bag baby carrots
- 4 plums, 1 apple, 1 peach, 1/3 container strawberries
- 2 pork chops
- ½ 32 oz. Plain 0% Chobani yogurt
- Dark chocolate chips
My “plan” for the week is to cook up the squash and then pretty much alternate between pork and chicken with different vegetables for dinners and have different salad combinations for lunches. Not quite as structured as last week’s but it still works!
I packed today’s lunch at Billy’s last night so I didn’t have a whole lot to work with and ended up with this:
A peanut butter
sandwich hamburger and half of a bag of baby carrots. Not that flashy but still fairly nutritious. I also have a peach, a plum, and some almonds for later if I get hungry this afternoon.
What’s on your grocery list this week?
When do you do your grocery shopping?
What are your favorite tips for grocery shopping?