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If you live alone, grocery shopping can feel wasteful. Grocery story portions are usually designed to feed families instead of just one person.

So how can you plan a grocery trip just for you that will leave you feeling healthy and less wasteful?

Plan Ahead

  • Buy ingredients you can use in multiple meals. It's easier to add variety when you have ingredients you can use in several meals.

  • Condiments and spices are your friend! They can dress up plain foods, and add totally new flavors to basic meals.

hot sauce noodles GIF

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Think About How Long Ingredients Usually Last


  • Don't go bad for a long time

  • Good to buy in bulk


  • Go bad quickly

  • Try to buy only as much as you think you will need

Frozen fruits and veggies last longer than fresh ones, and they still have lots of good nutrients!


Which ingredient is the best to buy in bulk?

Brown rice


Cilantro stems

Salmon fillets

Portion And Freeze

  • Split leftovers into small portions and freeze them for later. Proteins like steak, chicken, or fish will last for a long time in the freezer.

  • If your grocery store has a bulk goods section, it's a great way buy the exact amount you want, so nothing goes to waste. You can do the same thing at the deli counter with meats and cheeses.

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Which option gives you the most control over how much you buy?

Deli-sliced lunch meat

Blocks of cheese

Pre-packaged lunch meat

Pre-packaged cheese slices

How Often To Buy Groceries

Several smaller grocery trips might be better than one big trip.

For example, you can buy groceries for 2-3 days at a time, buying only the ingredients you know you will use for those 2-3 days.

This strategy is great if you want to include lots of fresh fruits, veggies, and herbs in your diet!

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Time to take your new insights to the store! Start now:


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This Byte has been authored by


Silvan Spicer

higher education instructional designer