1. Don’t use a grocery list. Aside from beer, I can’t think of anything a household has to have to survive. You don’t need milk and orange juice, you need the nutrients they provide — Vitamin C and D, calcium, protein, and fat. See if you can get those nutrients from other sources at a lower cost. Be sure to compare “oranges to oranges, apples to apples.” A $.50 orange (116% DV Vit C in 62 cal) is much more expensive than a $.50 red bell pepper (291% DV Vit C in 25 cal), assuming you’re not trying to gain weight.
If you have to have a list, read 1a.
1a. Replace grocery list with nutrition list. Example of a nutrition list to feed the Brady Bunch for a day:
- Protein (668g)
- Carb (400 g)
- Fiber (843 g)
- Fat (211 g)
- Calcium (311 g)
Nutrition list should be customized for individual/family needs. For instance, if someone needs to gain weight, add calories to list. If someone needs more iron, add iron.
Nutrition lists may seem challenging to work with because one has to translate ingredients into numbers. There’s an easy way to do this, which we’ll reveal in a separate post.
2. Shop with a budget. Don’t ever exceed budget. Most shop not knowing how much they’ll spend b/c they shop with grocery list. Make shopping with a budget a competition with friends. You’ll be surprised how resourceful one can be.
3. Let sales determine weekly menu. Eat mostly what’s on sale. Doing so will also result in a varied diet.
4. Develop a flexible, broad palate. Ability to appreciate a diversity of cuisines allows for wider range of shopping maneuvers and increase access to high-value low-cost ingredients.
5. Don’t follow recipes, don’t try to recreate food porn. Use recipes are guidelines, not as requirements. Cut out unnecessary ingredients and make convenient cost-cutting substitutions. Don’t use a measuring cup, unless you’re baking. Less is more, simplify cooking, let the pros make porn. Go out to eat if you want porn.