It’s officially “Friday-eve” which means the weekend is within reach. Depending on your shopping routine, your pantry and refrigerator may be starting to look a little sparse at this point in the work-week. Before you head to the market to stock up, check out this summary of how to build a grocery list.
This third and final post in our “Organize Your Way to Better Health” series will help you streamline the process of planning meals for the week. An organized grocery list is an excellent tool for keeping your weight and food costs under control!
HAVE A PLAN
- Decide what you will eat for the week BEFORE you attempt to plan your grocery list.
- Don’t forget to include breakfast, snack and lunch items on your list in addition to the ingredients necessary for dinners you plan.
CREATE A LIST OF STAPLES
- Keep nutritious “meal builders” like beans, low-sodium canned tuna or salmon, or whole grains like quinoa in your pantry; these are a great foundation for easy (& healthy) lunches and dinners even in a time-crunch.
- Need help? The American Heart Association offers great tips to get you started: Heart-Healthy Kitchen Staples.
Your Lifestyle Medical Center providers are quite savvy at this too!
- Keep your list of staples attached to your pantry door or refrigerator so you can quickly glance each week and confirm what you are running low on.
- Bonus Tip: Laminate your list and use a dry erase marker to keep track; you can wipe it clean and start again next week!
SHOP BY CATEGORY
- Arrange your list by food groups. Try this sample template.
- If you frequent the same grocery store regularly, make your list even more user-friendly by setting it up per the organization of the store.
CHECK THE WEEKLY ADS
- Don’t let food costs be your excuse for avoiding nutritious foods. Pick recipes and build meals around the upcoming sales at your local market.
- Shop seasonal – produce that is in season is generally less expensive and tastes better
Looking to take your grocery shopping knowledge to the next level? Sign up for a monthly Grocery Store Tour led by one of our Registered Dietitians! Locations vary each month so keep an eye on the calendars in our clinic and online.