Creating a grocery list

After you’ve created your menu plan, it’s time to make your grocery list. Having a list keeps you on track for your budget and prevents impulse purchases like that enticing box of cookies or the gallon of ice cream.

Creating a grocery list is quite simple. To create a grocery list:

  1. Figure out your grocery budget for the week. Doing this first not only helps you decide how much money you have for the week but it will help you determine what your menu plan will look like.
  2. Write down all the ingredients that you need to fill in the recipes selected for your weekly menu plan.
  3. Browse your local grocery store fliers for sales. If you use coupons, go through your coupons and match them up with grocery store sales. This will help with extra savings.
  4. Post your grocery list next to your menu plan or with your coupons or with your grocery money (if you use cash; if you don’t use cash, put the list in your purse or wallet). This will make sure that you do not forget it when you go shopping.

Although I discussed doing this weekly, the same steps apply with whatever time frame you use for your grocery shopping. I also suggest that you keep a pad of paper near your fridge or pantry so that when, when you run out of a staple or a frequently used ingredient, you can write it down for the next time you go shopping.

Like menu planning, creating a grocery list can be time-consuming upfront but it’s totally worth it! The biggest bonus, for me, is the fact that having a grocery list helps shorten my time inside the supermarket. I can go right to the aisles I need and I don’t waste time window shopping for things I don’t need or can’t afford. I don’t have that much free time and any minute that’s saved means more time I get to spend doing something fun!

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2 Responses to “Creating a grocery list”

  1. alternotreality January 7, 2011 at 6:46 pm #

    Plus, if you save your menu plans and grocery lists together and rotate them, you can save money that way and not have to re-do menu plans. I’m working on making menu plans for a year, complete with grocery lists, with things that are in season at the time where I live.

    • theemptykitchen January 7, 2011 at 7:25 pm #

      that’s actually a really great idea! i did that once–i spent about 2 hours coming up with a 3 month menu plan. i still have it. now that i think of it, i should probably use it for ideas.

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