Productivity Tip: Maximizing Grocery Shopping for One

posted in: Productivity 2

Do you live on your own? Even if you don’t, perhaps you live with others and buy food for Image of phrase Solo Grocery Shoppingyourself based on your own dietary needs and requirements.

Ever wonder how you can make the most out of your food shopping trips each week?

Today’s post provides you with some tips on how to maximize your grocery shopping efforts as a solo shopper. Before we begin, thanks to N.S.I. for suggesting this blog post idea.

Check your pantry/fridge.

You can better maximize your grocery shopping and prevent buying duplicate or unneeded items, by knowing what you currently have in your pantry and fridge. What foodstuffs do you have in stock? What items are you running low on and will need to pick up at the store? Create a shopping list for reference at the store.

Make a meal plan for the week.

It’s not uncommon to hear of large families planning out their dinner menus for the week. A solo shopper can also benefit from some thoughtful meal planning for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks to reduce trips to the store. Plan out your menu for the week based on your current food stock and what you’d like to eat during the week. Take into consideration any recipes that will yield multiple servings, which can easily be turned into leftovers for dinner or lunch. Also keep in mind any days when you are planning to eat out/order in/take out; you skip buying food for those meals and/or can turn any restaurant leftovers into second meals.

Become familiar with ripening and spoilage rates of foods.

Packaged and/or processed foods conveniently have expiration dates for easy reference. When it comes to unprocessed foods, however, you need to learn how long it takes ripen foods and how long foods typically last until they spoil. Knowing these rates will help you make better food purchases so you won’t end up buying something that spoils fast, forget to eat something before it spoils or pass up on a good deal for an item that will keep well for weeks on end. For example, a small bunch of delicate greens such as watercress won’t last more than a couple of days in the fridge, while an aerated bag of potatoes will keep for weeks in a cool, dark place.

Make use of your freezer.

You can freeze several foods reasonably well without having to worry about eating food in time before it spoils. Items such as prepared soups, bread, bagels, nuts and raw meats freeze remarkably well.

Now to you… what do you think is a major concern for the solo food shopper? Spoilage, storage, sales on large quantities of food? Leave a comment below and join in the conversation!

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Rashelle Isip is a New York City-based professional organizer and productivity consultant who helps people get organized so they can stress less, have more fun, and be happier at home. Her work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Fast Company, Cosmopolitan, The Washington Post, Business Insider, and The Atlantic. Get access to her free guide, 10 Simple Ways to Make Your To-Do Lists More Effective, by clicking here.
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2 Responses

  1. Rosemary

    Since brown rice takes a bit of time to cook, make extra and freeze it in individual freezer containers. It freezes wonderfully and reheats in the microwave with a tiny bit of water added. Oh-
    be sure to slice bagels before freezing – you don’t have to wait to cut them before toasting!

    • Rashelle

      Those are two very clever tips. Not only do they prevent food from spoiling, but they also make meal preparation a breeze. Fantastic! Rashelle