How to plan grocery shopping for the month pt2

Now that you have your monthly menu all planned out, it is time to make your grocery list from that menu.

If you did just a week’s worth of groceries……Grab a blank piece of paper and start with your first meal and think of all the ingredients that you need to make it.  If you shop at different stores, make separate sections on your page for the different places.  Write down which ingredients that you need to purchase for those meals.  Be sure to check your pantry or freezer for items that you may already have so that you do not over buy:)

For us, I start with our master monthly grocery list.  I did this back in our old state and used it for years, then we moved here and I had to acclimate and find out which stores were the best to carry the items I needed.  It took some time.  It took some time memorizing the stores again.  They aren’t the same, they are backwards.  It has been almost two years and I finally just made my master grocery list.  I now have a routine for where we shop.    Making this blog post has motivated me to do it.  Every month I would sit down and write out my grocery list and it takes time to do it.  Every time  I kept saying, “I will make a master list next time,”  but next time never came.  By doing this post it has “made” me get moving and make it.  Now I am thankful that I have it.  I took one of those hot days where it was too warm to go anywhere and there was rain in the forecast so I knew we would just be inside.

I have kept my grocery lists for the last few months to make this big one.  Then I know I would not miss anything.  I also checked my pantry for items that I have on hand that I put on this list.  I didn’t write down the bulk items that we get usually once per year.  Those items are white wheat flour, oatmeal, sugar, rice, popcorn seeds, cocoa, bulgar, flax seeds, and wheat germ.  I get those through an Amish store and they order them in 25-50 lb packages. My 50 lbs of cocoa powder has lasted me for the last two years still?!?!?

Here is what our master grocery list looks like

main grocery list

Yours will be different, depending upon the needs of your family.  So grab a cup of coffee, tea, water, or whatever you drink and start typing up your master grocery list.  I did mine in Microsoft Office.  I added columns and then I inserted text boxes for the items on the right hand side.  I left plenty of blank space for items that I would have to add later on.  I would recommend keeping the list after you shop and making any notes of isles that maybe you had switched around on your page.    Maybe there was an item that you normally buy that you forgot, write it down while your shopping and then add it later on.

Keep them all in the pattern that you shop in. Start at the back of the store and come forward.  That way your veges and breads will be on top of your grocery baskets.

I also added a section for all of our household items like personal care and paper products, etc. This is for all those things that we need to make our household run.

If you live in warmer climates, I would recommend taking coolers in your vehicle for cold items.  We also take laundry baskets to use for Aldi’s items and for breads, chips etc.  Boxes we typically just stack in our van trunk, but all of the smaller items we put in laundry baskets instead of buying bags.

Here is a video clip of some ideas I do when making our list:

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