Time-Saving, Money-Saving Tip: Create a Default Grocery List

Few of us are new to grocery shopping, but sometimes you don't have time to plan a menu for the week or even to make a coherent list. Often we find ourselves standing in the grocery store, minutes ticking down, yet still unsure of what to cook. This is why you should always have a default grocery list in reserve — it will save you in such emergencies!

What do I mean by a default, or standby, grocery list? Well the idea is simple. Pick four meals you or your family loves to eat. Round up the ingredients and make a list. Laminate it if you want, or tape it to the inside of your checkbook (wait do we still carry those around?) for safekeeping.

That way when you find yourself in the mad dash between work and home and you have to arrive with food you're not tempted to buy overpriced items on a whim and end up spending your entire grocery budget on just one meal.

As an added bonus you can make meals play together. For instance, grilled chicken and roasted vegetables one — and dice up leftovers to add to salad greens the next time for something fresh.

Do you have any standby meals that would be great to add to this default grocery list? Let us know below!

Related: OurGroceries: A Simple Yet Effective Grocery List App

(Image: Flickr member Bruce Turner licensed for use by Creative Commons)