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Tips to Save Money at the Grocery Store

The NDSU Extension Service provides top tips for feeding families, healthy, nourishing food while sticking to a budget.

Shopping with a plan is the most effective way to purchase nutritious food while saving time and money.

To make an effective shopping list, consumers should:

  1. Plan a weekly menu, taking into account how many meals will be eaten outside the home and if you are expecting company.
  2. Take stock of foods on-hand.
  3. Check store ads (both print and online) for sale items.
  4. Make a grocery list and organize the list according to the store layout.

Consider MyPlate when planning your menu.  Divide your plate in half and fill half your plate with nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables.  Make the other half whole grains and lean protein and round out each meal with a serving of low-fat dairy.  Sample menus are available at

Try to shop no more than once a week, avoid shopping when the store is crowded, check the unit-price to compare similar items and consider ways to store and preserve food to maximize shelf life and reduce food waste.

Watch these videos to learn about calculating the cost of produce and using the unit price.


Filed under: smart shopping
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