How would you like to save over £700 a year on your grocery shopping? The good news is that it’s surprisingly simple. You can save money just by writing a grocery list before you head to the shop! Read on with Quick Loans Express to discover how a grocery list can help you save.

Story Highlights:

  • How can a grocery list help you save money?
  • Prep Your Grocery List: Meal Plan Like a Pro!
  • Tips to help you shop smarter

Write a Grocery List

The #1 benefit of writing a shopping list before you leave home is that it gives you a clear idea of what you need. If you know what you came to buy, you’re less likely to go for the special offers on items you don’t really need. Often, after unpacking a special offer purchase at home, you realise you don’t know how to cook it, and you don’t particularly like it. Sometimes, you’ll even need to go shopping again for other ingredients to turn these ‘special offers’ into a dish. How many times have you ended up throwing these ‘bargains’ away?

With a shopping list in hand, you know exactly where to head in the shop. No more wandering the aisles as you desperately try to remember what you need at home. No more distracted or impulse buying, leaving you scrambling for quick cash loans at the end of the month.

Shopping with a purpose can also keep you away from the ‘dangerous’ aisles with sweets, cakes and biscuits. This is especially useful if you’re on a diet or have to go shopping with young kids. If you don’t see these non-essential products, you’re less likely to crave them, and the kids won’t start whining for you to buy them.

Finally, with the list in your hand, you’re less likely to forget items you need. If you’ve ever had to go back to the supermarket for one forgotten item, you’ll know how risky this can be. How many times have you gone to the shop for one thing and walked out with two carrier bags having spent over £20? Spending money like this can really harm your finances, forcing you to rely on small loans to cover basics.

Prep Your Grocery List: Meal Plan Like a Pro!

The first step towards a money-saving grocery list is a great weekly meal plan. Try to plan a few meals with the same ingredients, using your creativity to switch it up. This way, you’re much less likely to throw away food (especially perishables). For example, you can use winter root vegetables in a nutritious soup one day. You can also serve them later that week as a tasty side dish for a roast dinner.

If you’re meal planning for a family, make sure to vary the menu, so everyone has something that they like. Lots of delicious food can go to waste when you’ve got a houseful of picky eaters. Try to include meals that give everyone options, like a salad bar or top-your-own-pizza night. You’ll save a lot of wasted food and have lots of happy eaters.

The ‘Love Food, Hate Waste’ campaign group estimate that the average family throws away £60 of food every month because it goes off before it is eaten. With a family menu in place, you can avoid excessive waste and watch your savings add up to over £700 a year.

Buy Seasonal Produce

When making up your menu for the week, concentrate on using seasonal fruit and vegetables. Buying produce that’s in season can save you a fortune at check-out. Don’t be tempted to buy exotic fruit unless it’s a real bargain and you know your family will eat it. Buying off-season expensive fruit is an unnecessary expense that can waste your hard earned money.

Check Cupboards, Fridges & Freezers Before Writing your Grocery List

Before making your shopping list, check to see what you already have in the kitchen. You’ll be surprised at what’s lurking in the back of your cupboards. Try to combine what you already have with leftovers from the fridge. You might be able to make a whole dish for pennies if you only need to buy one ingredient.

If you’re not feeling so creative, there are plenty of websites which can suggest dishes for you to make using the ingredients you have on hand.

Cooking this way can save you a lot of money which you can put away for an emergency. Many people who don’t have an emergency fund are forced to take out instant payday loans when they need money quickly. Having emergency money put aside can help you avoid this.

Shop Smarter

Your shopping list can help prevent impulse buys, but it’s not set in stone. If you see a really good offer, think of a way incorporate the item into your menu. For instance, if the shop is having a special on turkey drumsticks, you can easily replace the chicken dish you’d planned and save money.

Many leading brands and shops frequently offer coupons and voucher codes on basic household items. Before heading to the store, look for voucher codes online or in magazines to help you rack up those savings.


Even without coupons, cashback sites and supermarket comparison websites, a simple action like writing a shopping list can save consumers a lot of money every year.

Next time you’re heading to the shops, take the time to sit down and make a list of what you really need. You’ll immediately see a difference in how much you pay at check-out and how much you throw away later. And even better, you’ll watch your savings pile up– just by making a grocery list

Crystal Evans
Crystal is a Web Content Manager with a passion for helping others. A Marketing Specialist by trade, Crystal’s first job was in the financial sector and she has been adding verve to personal finance ever since! When in high school, Crystal enjoyed creating revision notes and study aids for her peers – making concepts Crystal Clear. She continues this practice in the post-university School of Life – channelling her love of sharing information into blogging about personal finance

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