Shop and Save

Plan your shopping trip

Before you shop:

  • Make a shopping list. This helps you stick to your budget.
  • Plan your meals and how to use leftovers.
  • Look for coupons, sales, and store specials.
  • Sign up for store discount cards.

While you shop:

  • Don’t shop when you are hungry. If you are hungry, you will likely buy things you don’t need.
  • Try store brands. They usually cost less.
  • Compare products for the best deal.
  • Check “sell by” dates. Buy the freshest food possible so it lasts longer.

Shop smart

Vegetables and salad

  • Buy large bags of frozen vegetables.
  • Buy full heads of lettuce or spinach for salads. Avoid pre-bagged salad mixes. Uncut fresh vegetables will last longer and can cost less than bagged salad mixes.


  • Buy fresh fruits in season when they often cost less. Farmer’s Markets will have fruit that is in season. (future…find a farmers’ market near you)
  • Frozen and canned fruits are a smart choice all year round.

Low-fat milk products

  • Buy fresh, low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese in the largest size that you can use before they go bad. The large items will save you money.
  • Ultra-pasteurized milk has a longer expiration date and won’t spoil as fast.

Meat and beans

  • Dried beans and peas are a good source of protein and fiber and last a long time.
  • Chuck or bottom round roast has less fat and costs less than sirloin.
  • Look for deals at the meat counter. Buy meat on sale to save money.
  • Buy meat in large bulk packages to save money. Freeze what you might not use right away to keep it from going bad.

Breads and grains

  • Look for bread that is a day old. It costs less, but is still good to eat.
  • Buy regular rice, oatmeal, and grits. Instant rice, oatmeal, and grits cost more and have more sugar and calories.