6 Tips To Grocery Shop Like A Pro

6 Tips To Grocery Shop Like A Pro
6 Tips To Grocery Shop Like A Pro

Grocery shopping is like a sport-some people love it and others despise it (seeing that I’m a food blogger, I’m assuming you’ve guessed how much I love it!). That said, it is an essential part of our days-sometimes every day if you live in my household.

Stops to the grocery store are just as consistent for me as going to work each morning. As much as it makes me cringe to admit that I go nearly every day, I can justify it by saying that I shop like a true Italian-translated, I base my meal prep on a combination of mood and what’s fresh and appealing to me at the grocery store.


Needless to say, after-work life is busy, especially trying to balance my evenings with workouts at the gym and spending time with my kids. Consequently, it is imperative that I make my shopping trips as organized and effective as possible so as to not waste my precious time-and even more precious money.

Based on the fact that I make daily trips to the grocery store, I’d like to think of myself as a grocery shopping pro. Coincidentally, I’d like to share with you 6 tips to grocery shop like a pro that ensure every shopping trip is as quick, stress-free, and on-budget as possible!

1. Establish frequently used items and buy them in bulk

An easy way to avoid overbuying items is to do a quick inventory of the fridge and pantry before heading to the grocery store. Establish essential items that your family consumes on a constant basis (i.e., milk, yogurt, eggs, fresh fruit and veggies) and buy those items in bulk. This will reduce unnecessary trips to the grocery store and avoid impulse buying.

2. Organize your grocery list according to aisles in the store

An effective grocery list serves a purpose-to get you in and out as soon as possible. This way you can avoid grabbing items that appeal to you in the moment. Also, listing items according to where they’re found at the grocery store will facilitate shopping and help avoid the possibility of roaming through random aisles.

3. Choose a basket over a cart 

Take an inventory of the items that you need to buy and choose a basket or cart accordingly. With a basket, each item you pick up will be carefully considered ensuring less of a possibility that you will add unnecessary items to your list. If choosing a cart, remember to stick to your list so you don’t take advantage of all the extra storage space.

4. Pre-plan meals and try to avoid buying packaged foods

Although pre-made or pre-cut food can be more convenient, especially for those busy weeknights or last-minute meals, they also cost more than fresh foods. Try to set aside some time on the weekend for meal prep, for example chopping vegetables and storing, or preparing freezer-friendly meals for the family.

5. Choose seasonal produce whenever possible

When purchasing produce, keep an eye out for what’s in season. Besides the fact that fruits and veggies are tastier when at their peak, you can take advantage of local products, especially when you can get a good deal on them at farmer’s markets. Plus, by individually selecting produce you can choose the freshest ones available, avoiding the rotten or bruised produce that gets hidden in packages.

6. Don’t shop on an empty stomach 

We’ve heard this one time and time again, and it works. If you grocery shop on an empty stomach more foods will appeal to you (usually the not-so healthy ones) and you’ll be more inclined to grab random snacks to bring home-or eat as you shop.

22 thoughts on “6 Tips To Grocery Shop Like A Pro”

  • No. 6 is a big YES! I noticed the difference also… I tend to go over my budget if I shop while hungry.


  • Aprill 8 years ago

    Thank you for the handy tips. I tend to shop in bulk, so a small handbasket would kill me

    • Jo Stegall 6 years ago

      A good reason to make an online order while sitting in the living room after a delicious meal. I use Walmart, no charge for the service and great prices. We have been $100 under budget several months now and are eating healthier and a greater variety of foods.

  • Great grocery tips! I always use a cart so I can have something to lean on but I do end up buying things not on my shopping list. Basket over cart makes sense budget-wise.

  • These are great tips. Especially only using a basket. Whenever I use a cart I think I definitely spend to much.

  • Great tips especially don’t shop on an empty stomach!

  • rika agustini 8 years ago

    Great tips.. I think I spend too much money on foods 🙁 I need to try these tips

  • I have shopped hungry on several occasions and it never ends well. I wake up the next day and I am like why did I spent $400.00 when I meant to spend $150.00 lol.

    • Jo Stegall 6 years ago

      I am 65 and not affiliated with Walmart in any way. I have cut $100 off our grocery bill for several months by ordering online. That was not my intent, it was a matter of problems with my back. I love developing menus and trying new recipes. My 85 year old mother loves it as well, she loves getting some potato chips. We are able to save money and have a greater variety. Good luck, I have been where you are.

  • I am big on creating and shopping by a list. I do a lot of coupons so it helps me out stay organize when shopping.

  • sara 8 years ago

    These are great tips! I like to look through the store circulars and plan which sales I want to visit. I shop almost every day so I usually have produce that is very fresh.

  • In our family, we always make a big list of things each time – we still tend to add a few when we do the grocery though, lol.. but having a list always helps. It helps to definitely go by the aisle on the store – saves lots of time.

  • These are awesome tips! I love shopping to and do most of what you listed. I have definitely learned quickly not to go shopping hungry! =)

  • We are buying things in bulk more often now, but I still find myself running to the store for fresh items too often. I need to buy less and cook more!

  • Jeanine @ sixtimemommy.com 8 years ago

    Great tips! I struggle with groceries so most times I send my husband. i always go when I’m hungry and just buy everything I see. its awful.

  • Rebecca Swenor 8 years ago

    These are all great tips for grocery shopping like a pro. Organizing your list according to the store isles is something I would not think of but would be very convenient. Thanks for sharing the tips.

  • Well – what a wonderful list of tips that are exact on – I like them all and especially the basket over a cart, since I do indulge in buying too much! lol

  • I fancy myself a shopping pro, too. 😉 Not shopping on an empty stomach is so key – and I also make my lists according to the aisles in the store!

  • Jacqui Stewart 8 years ago

    I need to get better at this. Right now, I’m trying to get through the food stores I have now before shopping for more main items. Hoping to get my pantry more organized and I won’t feel the need to buy as much! Thanks for sharing!

  • Dina Demarest 8 years ago

    I love that shopping with a basket. It would really make me think twice about buying a lot of items.

  • Melissa Dixon 8 years ago

    I always organize my shopping list by aisle but those days when I just stop in with no list, it ends in a large bill every time. If I take my family with me it also brings the bill up, they like to buy whatever looks good to them. I try to stick to my list and not worry about what looks good at the moment otherwise I would buy everything too.

  • MrsMuffinTop © 8 years ago

    I’m very curious how many times you actually go to the store! As someone who plays around in the kitchen, I know your way is better, but with three kids: NO WAY 🙂
    I’m going to use your suggestion of organizing by aisle. That’s a great tip!

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