Systematic Grocery Shopping

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Grocery cart

The best way to grocery shop is to shop at the same stores. Time is money. While stay-at-home moms may have ample time to go from store to store to get the best deals and search for coupons, court reporters do not. So the best thing to do is to stick to one or two stores at most. I stick to one: Kroger.

I do shop at Target and Whole Foods from time to time, but to avoid going to these places more than once every three months, I stock up on the things that I NEED. So for instance, instead of buying one bottle of local honey at Whole Foods, buy two. This way, when you run out, you’re not really out. So you can delay that shopping and make one big list before going. The same is true for anything I consider NEEDs that run out in less than 3 months generally: paper towels, toilet paper, all-purpose spray. I always keep one extra if I can’t get it at Kroger.

The best time to go grocery shopping is at night. It will just mostly be business professionals at this hour, looking to get in and out. The second best time is mid-morning, 10 am.

When you are new to the area, you want to map out the aisles. If you are in Kroger, you want to write down all the aisles and list what is on the sign at the front of each aisle. This initial work, while it sounds silly, only takes 5 minutes and will save you a lot of time going down aisles that you don’t need anything in.

So here you are with your first list on the fridge. You have sharpied things on the list in any order when things run out (I have a laminate paper on the fridge). Now is your job to copy that list on to a paper you can take to the store. When writing it down, categorize the items the way the store is laid out.

So let me run down a regular categorized list. Five categories only. Don’t need to list the heading above each category, but just put a space between each category on your list.

Produce/deli first:
garlic
green onions
potato
mesquite turkey
gouda slices

Meat second:
pork chops
chicken
2 lb beef

Canned food/spices/ethnic/snack foods foods next (middle aisles):
tuna
green beans
Saimin
curry mix
beef stew pack
flour tortillas
salt
Gardetto’s
Tortilla chips

Dairy:
Egg
Butter

Drinks/Bread/Frozen:
grape juice
wheat bread
frozen vegetable

Note: Better to get toiletries in bulk online.
Also, a post about how to meal plan coming up.

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