Going to the grocery store can be stressful. There’s so much to choose from, and it may seem like there’s never enough time or money to buy what you need. Here are some tips to make your trips to the store faster, less costly, and healthier for you and your family. Also, read about What's in Season, for tips on choosing the best produce.
Smart grocery shopping
- Make a shopping list and stick to it. Planning ahead can help you avoid buying foods on impulse, and keep within your budget. Include the grocery store specials for the week in your planning. Look for fresh fruits and vegetables in season.
- Start shopping at the outside aisle. Choose fresh fruits and vegetables, low-fat milk, lean meats, poultry, fish and whole grain breads before shopping for convenience items and snacks. (The center aisles are where more costly pre-packaged and heavily processed foods are sold.)
- Don’t shop when you’re hungry. When you put off grocery shopping until you are really hungry, you are more likely to buy foods that you wouldn’t normally buy and that are higher in fat and calories.
- When choosing between different brands of the same product, check the nutrition labels and choose the one that is the lowest in fat and sodium.
- In the summer months, consider buying produce at your local farmers market.
It can be cheaper than the supermarket, and the fruits and vegetables are
Consider buying large quantities of some fruits and vegetables and freezing them for the winter months. The farmer’s market can be a fun outing for your family! You will also be helping to keep Vermont’s economy strong.
Fruits and Vegetables on a Budget
Did you know healthy eating may be better for your budget? Fruits and vegetables can be surprisingly cheap. An average banana costs less than most sweet and salty snacks, and it provides more nutrients for less calories.
- Buy fresh fruits and vegetables in season. Not only are they cheaper they will also taste better.
- Buy frozen fruits and vegetables.
- Be sure to buy them plain without added seasonings or sauces.
- Buy large bags of frozen vegetables.
- Buy canned fruits and vegetables.
- Look for fruits canned in their own juices. Avoid ones that are packaged in syrup.
- Drain and rinse canned vegetables to remove added salt.
- Buy store or generic brands over name brands.
- Use coupons. But buy only the foods you and your family normally eat.
- Look for specials at the grocery store on fruits and vegetables.