Becoming A Grocery Store Guru (Part 2)
Recently, we shared with you 5 of our top tips to help you on your journey towards becoming a Grocery Store Guru. We walked you through simple tools to help you confidently navigate the aisles of any grocery store and make smart food choices for you and your family. If you missed part 1 of this series, read all about it here. Today, we’re going to continue on with the next 5 tips to add to your ‘cart’ for your next grocery shopping trip.
6. Buy in bulk
Have you ever compared the price of individual produce to its bulk counterpart? What about “convenience” produce (aka, pre-washed, pre-cut, packaged varieties). If not, you are in for a big surprise. Let’s take apples for instance. Our local markets sell individual apples for an average of $0.99 each, or $2.99-$3.99/lb. You can opt for a bag of 8 apples for just $2.99. Next, let’s take carrots. A 1 lb bag of peeled baby carrots costs $2.50 yet you can upgrade to a 5lb bag of full size carrots for just $2.98. We’re not talking cents in savings, these are significant dollars each week. Think of your annual savings! For those produce items you and your family use on the regular, buy in bulk.
7. Get friendly with frozen (fruits and veggies)
There are a lot of misconceptions about the quality of frozen produce and we’re here to set the record straight. For starers, frozen fruits and veggies are typically flash frozen soon after harvest which helps preserve their nutrients, perhaps even more so than fresh produce. Dry cooking methods such as roasting, quick sautés, and even microwaving helps maintain the majority of these nutrients, making them a great addition to any meal. Another exciting benefit of frozen is that you can enjoy your seasonal favorites all year long, for often less than the fresh varieties! Just remember that frozen produce should only contain 1 ingredient – the fruit or vegetable itself. Add your own seasonings later on so you know exactly what, and how much, is being added in.
8. Join the club
Does your local market have a loyalty rewards program? If so, it may be a good idea to sign up today. Many programs offer weekly deals on your regular food items that can save you a bundle. Also, don’t be afraid to shop store vs big brand. Often, you’re looking at the same quality product for a much nicer price tag. Just be wary of deals on junk food and or those things you don’t really need.
9. Make a list and check it twice
What we mean is that you should always make a grocery list and then shop accordingly. This way you don’t end up going home with a $200 cart of miscellaneous groceries and no game plan. It’s easy to get swayed by killer deals, fun new items, and tasty treats but things can add up quickly on that grocery bill. Before leaving the house, plan out your week’s meals and snacks as well as your family’s most-needed items throughout the week. You can even write out your list by department so you don’t waste too much time hopping back and further between aisles.
10. Stop and smell the….samples?
Anyone else notice how you always get a lovely whiff of the sample carts before you make it 10 feet inside the store? Or the intoxicating aroma of freshly brewed coffee from the coffee stand by the entrance? There is a calculated reason for that! Grocery retailers want you to come in, stay a while, and add a few more items to that lonely shopping cart of yours. Before heading out the door to shop, eat a well balanced meal or snack so you won’t feel tempted to toss in those taquitos the sample lady is passing out or clearing out the shelf of half-priced holiday treats.