A Minimalist Guide to Grocery Shopping

In a previous blog post,  I walked you through the many wonders that a minimalist lifestyle can do to your budget – the less items you need, the less you buy, the less you have, the less you spend on upkeep and the more you save.

Going back, Minimalism is a lifestyle and a mindset of having only the essential things that can add value to one’s life in order to achieve clarity, financial freedom, success and lasting happiness.

Now, one of your biggest expenditures is grocery shopping.  According to The Business Insider, the average American household spends most of its money on housing, transportation and food – and if you want to cut costs and save money, food is the easiest place to start.

So if you think you’re not yet ready to embrace the whole minimalist lifestyle just yet, begin with how you stock up your fridge and pantry.  So let’s take notes from a Minimalist’s take on grocery shopping.

Do a weekly stock-take of your cupboards, fridge and pantry.

Make it a habit to check and clean out your food storage before you head to the grocery store in order to see what you have and know what you need.  Trust me, you’ll be amazed to see a lot of hidden food treasures that you completely forgot about, thus saving you money from spending on food items that you actually have already.

Plan your weekly menu.

Now before making your shopping list, work on a meal plan for the whole week based on the ingredients that you already have.  Aside from spending less on ingredients, planning ahead prevents multiple grocery runs that can blow up your budget.  I’m sure you’re guilty of going to the grocery for one single item and you end up with a whole bag of impulse buys.  Let’s also not forget the money spent on gas.

Buy in exact quantities.

Minimalists don’t buy things they don’t need.  So you don’t really need a dozen of a certain ingredient if the weekly menu only needs half of it.  Even if the flashy deals say that it’ll save you more money.  You’ll just end up spending more when the ingredients get wasted by the end of the week.  So assess how much of each ingredient your weekly menu needs and just buy in exact proportions.

Know when to buy in bulk.

Like I said, it’s not ideal to buy food ingredients in multiples because they might just go to waste but for some items such as paper towels, toilet papers, etc., buying in bulk for bigger savings just makes perfect sense.

Don’t be a brand snob.

A true minimalist doesn’t buy items because of its brand name – so be open to new brands, stores and specials.  You might just be able to spot a new genuine bargain if you give yourself the chance to try new things.

Obviously, if you really want to save more, you need to spend less.  Think like a minimalist – spend time on carefully planning your purchases.  Make it a habit and be very disciplined about it.

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