Ever get overwhelmed when it comes to grocery shopping? Read on to learn how to navigate the grocery store with your health in mind, all while saving time and money. 

Meal Plan

Start with a meal plan for the week and a complete grocery list. Select four or five meals in advance, assuming you’ll be eating one or two as leftovers. Consider using a phone app to record your grocery list, such as Wunderlist, AnyList or Out of Milk. Remember to plan for lunches and snacks to avoid additional shopping trips. Visiting the grocery store once per week will save you time and money.


  • Stay focused on your grocery list, no extras.
  • Look up and down. The most expensive (typically name-brand items) will be at eye level. You may find lower-cost items by looking at the bottom or top shelves.
  • Choose generic brands. You’ll often find your favorite products have a generic or store-brand option. These will typically have similar ingredients, if not identical, and are generally less expensive than the brand-name option.
  • When comparing products for cost, look near the price label. Many stores will list the price per ounce for comparison.
  • Buy seasonal produce. If you purchase seasonal vegetables and fruits, you’ll save a ton of money. Try buying in bulk and freezing seasonal produce to eat healthy year-round.
  • Avoid the deli. Look for low-sodium, packaged deli meat and cheese. Or, buy a small turkey, bake it and slice it yourself. This is a great freezer option, too.
  • Skip buying beverages, like flavored waters, sports drinks, juices and sodas.
  • Avoid shopping when you’re hungry, tired, angry, frustrated or in a hurry.
  • Avoid the crowds. If you can help it, shop early morning or mid-day during the week, or early to mid-morning on the weekends.
  • Read the nutrition facts label. Sodium and added sugar can be found in several processed and packaged foods.



“Save More at the Store,” choosemyplate.gov, accessed Feb. 1, 2019.