Tips for Making Your Grocery Trip Last

As a graduate student and dietetic intern who also balances a part time job, I might be lucky to make it to the grocery store once a week (and the laundromat once every three weeks), which means that I have had to learn very carefully how to best use my groceries and shop smart. Additionally, I’m a big supporter of avoiding food waste for optimal sustainability, so it’s important to me not to waste anything if I don’t have to. Here are some of my best tips for other busy folks like me:

  1.       Buy frozen protein and vegetables when you can

This has been one of my major go-tos since I was an undergraduate student. I sometimes have trouble using up fresh vegetables when I’m cooking just for myself, so it’s easier to buy a few bags of frozen ones that I can pull out for recipes over the next couple weeks. I’m also a HUGE fan of easy frozen protein, like pre-cooked grilled chicken or shrimp. I also purchase steamable frozen edamame that makes enough for a couple of meals so I can get good use out of it with minimal prep time.

  1.       Make extra food at dinner for lunch the next day

This might seem like common sense, but this doesn’t always mean just classic leftovers of the same meal! If you open a jar of pesto for pasta, you can put it on a wrap or sandwich the next day. If you make extra brown rice for a stir fry dinner, you can throw it on a salad for the following lunch. Get creative in re-using ingredients in new ways!

  1.       Freeze everything!!

Okay, so you can thank generations of women in my family and their love for freezers for this one – but it really is incredibly useful. I freeze anything I know I might not use before it goes bad – from soup to taco meat to loaves of bread. You can even freeze ingredients like soy milk to make an extra creamy smoothie later!

These are just a few of the small, easy ways I like to contribute to a more sustainable world with less food waste (while also wasting less of my grocery money!) What are some of your favorite grocery saving tips?

Meet the Author

Kate Egan

Kate Egan

Kate Egan is a new RDN working for Noom as a virtual health coach. She completed her dietetic intern and MBA at Dominican University in River Forest, IL.She graduated with a BS in Dietetics and a minor in Child and Family Studies from University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point in 2015. In addition to blogging for CAND, she has also blogged for Student Scoop, the student blog portion of AND’s Food and Nutrition Magazine.
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