Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Grocery Shopping Do's and Don'ts

Facts about Feeding our Family

Fact #1:  Feeding a lot of people is a big, never ending job!! (Our kids eat a lot!) 
Fact #2:  Eating healthy is important to me.  

Here is a list of my do's and don'ts:

I don't:

Clip Coupons:  I have many friends that have a lot of success with coupons.  It doesn't work for me.  If I do find great coupons I usually leave them in the car or forget to give them to the cashier because I am trying to keep kids from crying :) If it works for you great, you could save a lot of money.  

Price Match:  A few of my friends shop at Walmart because they will match the prices that are advertised at other stores.  Again, I am usually shopping with too many young children to remember to tell the cashier that I need to price match certain items:)

I do:

Always write a menu before I go shopping.

Always write a shopping list and try to stick to it!  

Cook from scratch.  Over the years I have learned to cook from scratch and buy less prepared and processed foods.  (make my own rolls. . . and they taste so much better!)

Incorporate food storage items.  I have learned how to cook dry beans in the crock pot, I used a wheat grinder and use wheat flour almost all the time.

Less snacks.  I don't buy endless packs of fruit snacks or chocolate granola bars.  We try not to eat too many snacks so that the kids will eat their meals, but we do love to eat popcorn, fruit, cheese and wheat thins, nuts, dried fruit for snacks. 

Schedule shopping.  I go shopping at Sam's Club the first Wednesday of the month.  I stock up on frozen chicken breast, toilet paper, paper towels, diapers, cereal, meat. . .  the other Wednesdays during the month I shop at the local grocery store.  I would say that our "staple" items are fruit, milk, eggs, cheese, carrotts, and bread.  When I end up making a quick run to the grocery store for 1 or 2 items I always end up spending more than I think I will, so I try to only go once each week.  I do throw in a Walmart trip at some point durning the month to stock up on deodorant, toothpaste, or hairspray.  

Think ahead.  We don't just go out to eat when I don't feel like cooking.  I recognize that some nights will be busy and so I try to plan ahead for nights that we need dinner in a hurry.  When I make brown rice I always cook enough for 3 meals and freeze the extra in freezer bags.  If I am making a casserole I will try to make one for the freezer.  When we have homemade pizza I 4x my recipe and keep extra pizza dough in the freezer.  If all else fails we eat canned Campbell's soup!  

Hope this helps.  What are you thoughts or ideas?


The Spanglers said...

I love your think ahead ideas. I haven't had consistent results with brown rice. How do you make yours? I also didn't know you could freeze it, any special instructions for that?

Anonymous said...

The frozen brown rice and pizza dough is genius.

My recent goal is to always have at least 1 (better if 2 or 3) frozen meals in the freezer to pull out when needed.

This just saved us the other night when we got back late Saturday night from a trip and my Mother-in-law had stayed all week with our kids. The fridge and cupboards were bare.

We were too tired and it was too late for a grocery trip that night. For the next day we pulled out a freezer meal and since I was so wiped out from traveling, I wouldn't have wanted to cook if I had the ingredients.

Your healthy-eating ideas are always inspiring. I just made the bread from your mom's recipe the other day (when I e-mailed you the photo) and this week we're having lima beans, fruit smoothie and bread for dinner one night.

My food storage is like my extra pantry. I used to have tons of "extras" in there like freeze-dried carrots, yucky powdered milk, and 50lbs. of lentils. Well, it ended up being a waste of food. Now what is in my food storage is just an extension of what is in the pantry in my kitchen. It is an absolute life-saver and has saved us multiple extra trips to the grocery store when we realized we were out of something.

Our system for weekly shopping is we go once a week. We make up 7 meal ideas and make sure we have all the ingredients plus our basic staples and I go to Sam's Aldi's and Wal-Mart almost every week. I've got to figure out how to cut at least one of those stores out weekly. Then, we are flexible on the meals we eat that week. Wednesday night is busy, we do a quick & easy meal that night, etc.

I Love every idea you provide. Thank you so much!

Emma said...

Great ideas.

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