While some people make stops at the grocery store every day (or close to), there are many reasons to do your grocery shopping just once a week.
Grocery shopping is a task that most people dread. Another to-do on the list in a very busy schedule. I have friends that grocery shop every day, friends that grocery shop once a week, and even a few who eat out for every meal, believe it or not.
We fall into the camp of grocery shopping once a week. I actually don’t mind grocery shopping most of the time. Plus I get my groceries at Target, and who doesn’t love going to Target?!. And sure, I occasionally forget an item and have to make a quick run to the store by my apartment, but on the whole I do my shopping once a week and am done.
If you read my post about the reasons that meal planning is so good for you than you’re familiar with how much I advocate for planning ahead. Heck, if you read my blog than this is no surprise to you given all the planners and checklists that I create, share and personally use.
When you meal plan for the week ahead you can take those ingredients and put them right onto a grocery list. When you shop you’ll know exactly what to buy to get you through the week. That’s exactly what I do, for five very important reasons:
If you head towards the grocery store multiple times a week than you know how easy it is to buy according to your cravings at that moment. Added up over time and you’ll have bought more snacks than had you planned ahead, shopped, and stuck to having one or two snacks on hand at a time.
Instead, if you plan your meals ahead of time you can strategically look at what snacks you want, but also how to best use the ingredients you buy for multiple meals. For example, if I want to make my Caramelized Onion & Rotisserie Chicken Quiche I typically use the rest of the rotisserie chicken I have on hand to make my Rotisserie Chicken, Walnut & Apple Salad the next night, reducing my grocery bill since I’m buying less.
This reason is the most obvious one to me. You could spend an hour grocery shopping once per week, or 20-30 minutes shopping two, three, even four times per week. And wouldn’t you much rather just get your shopping done and reclaim your time during the week for other things? Particularly as the weather gets nicer. I don’t know about you, but given the choice I’d prefer to head to a patio after work for drink than find a parking spot at the grocery store, shop, leave, and do it all over again another three times that week.
We all crave unhealthy items. It happens, it’s normal, and I’m 100% about balance rather than restriction. That being said, when you plan your meals out for the week and shop accordingly, you’re much more likely to pick healthier ingredients for more nutritious meals. I have a meal planning template for free that pairs perfect. Plan out what you want to cook each week than use this grocery list template to list out the ingredients you need to buy!
LESS FOOD WASTE
Dylan and I were 100% guilty of being terrible food wasters when we first started dating. Since we didn’t plan out our meals we were buying on a whim constantly. When I think back, it disappoints me that we not only over bought fruits and vegetables that didn’t get ate, but that we cooked in a way that we were throwing out leftovers all the time (for example, we could never get through a 9×13 plan of lasagna just the two of us before getting SO TIRED of it).
When you plan out your meals and shop once a week you are buying just what you need. Or maybe you’re stocking your pantry, which I am a big fan of so you have healthy ingredients on hand for those busy weeknights. Regardless, you’re shopping to your needs and what you’re cooking, not what you’re craving, which will reduce how much food you waste.
It’s quite simple – the less time you spend walking the aisles of the grocery store, the less chance you have of grabbing that impulse snack. Now I’m not at all advocating for you not to snack, in fact quite the opposite. Both Dylan and I are chronic snackers – too much, if I’m being honest. So when we plan out what our snacks are going to be each week and stick to that list, there’s less chance of us going off the rails and snacking too much.
While I’m not sure that grocery shopping will ever not feel like a chore (unless you’re lucky enough to live somewhere like Paris where you head to a market every day), it doesn’t have to be a daily chore. You can save time, money, waste less food, snack less, and eat healthier when you plan your meals ahead of time and shop once a week.
I’ve created a free grocery shopping list template for you, organized by grocery store section. Simple download it and print it off each week so you don’t forget an ingredient, making your trip to store as quick and efficient as possible!
TELL ME: How often do you grocery shop?