The Frugal Café | Photo credit: Rebecca Anne, "Flora's Cup"</a> | Creative Commons License,
Photo credit: Rebecca Anne, "Flora's Cup" | Creative Commons License,

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Frugal Café Economical Foods Info & Checklist

By Vicki McClure Davidson


An economical foods checklist is a huge help in keeping your grocery bill down. | Photo credit: MS Office

An economical foods checklist is a huge help in keeping your grocery bill down. | Photo credit: MS Office

Whenever you go grocery shopping, you likely have a list so that you won't impulse shop and stick to your menu plan.

However, according to recent studies, for a huge number of people who bring lists with them to the grocery store, they actually spend more money beyond what they had budgeted, as compared to those who don't bring a list.

They worry that they may not have included on the list everything they need, so tend to toss additional impulse items, usually processed, into the cart, just to be safe. As a result, the food budget is abandoned... again.

It's a common occurrence, but there is a simple solution.

If you were to carry a list of economical food items that you simply had to check off before heading to the store, the temptation to improvise would be decreased.

We've constructed a convenient economical-food items list for you to print out and use when you grocery shop. Feel free to change/add to it any way you want, but we've brainstormed every inexpensive basic food item we could think of to make sure it was on the list (you will more than likely discover one that we missed). There are little to no factory-concocted food items (condiments and juices could fall in that category, so read the list of ingredients), some of which you can make yourself from scratch, if you'd prefer. All items listed are basics, most of which should become staples in your pantry, if they aren't already. We've even alphabetized it so that it is easier to use.

Click here to access the economical foods checklist. The checklist is in Adobe Acrobat pdf format and ready for printing. It may take a few seconds to load, depending on the speed of your web connection.

Reminder: The most expensive versions of a product in the supermarket are the ones at eye level. Next time you go shopping, examine the arrangement of different choices for a particular product, such as cereal or laundry detergent or dog food. Almost every time, the most expensive options per unit are placed at eye level, so you see them first when you enter an aisle. The bulk options and better deals are usually on the bottom shelves. The top shelves tend to be used for smaller and often more expensive specialty or gourmet items, although this isn't always the case.

Happy frugal shopping!


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