Buy only what you need
Plan your meals
The purpose of meal planning is to decide what you’re going to buy before you go to the grocery store. Making a meal plan takes a little extra time, but it’s worth it. You’ll save money by wasting less food.
Start meal planning today with these steps:
- See what you already have: Check your fridge and cupboards to see what food needs to be used up.
- Create your meal plan: Include foods that need to be used up in your meal plan. Be realistic about how much time and energy you’ll have to cook—include eating out, leftovers, and frozen foods in your meal plan. Use our Meal plan and shopping list template (pdf).
- Make a shopping list: Use your meal plan to make a shopping list. Include how much of each food you need so you don’t overbuy. Use our Meal plan and shopping list template (pdf).
- Stick to your shopping list: Use a smaller shopping cart or hand basket. Shop from bulk bins. Focus your bargain hunting skills on deals that fit into your meal plan, or foods that can be frozen for use in later meal plans.
- Stick to your meal plan: Use up foods that go bad quickly earlier in the week. Take the time to store food to stay fresh longer. Prepare food ahead of time so you’re more likely to eat it later in the week.
For more information, download our Meal planning & shopping guide (pdf).