If you want to be healthy then you need to learn how to gain the ability to create the right healthy grocery list.
So, I like to keep things simple because when things are simple, you are more likely to do them and stick with them!
And I love when healthy habits stick with others.
With that being said, I am going to break down how to create a healthy grocery list in a way that is super simple for you. So simple, that you will be able to follow it every time you make a grocery list until it is second nature.
AND I’m going to give you some awesome tips to be successful with your healthy grocery shopping.
What To Put On A Healthy Grocery List
What goes on your healthy grocery list is going to be unique to you!
Keep that in mind!
Just because you hear people say Kale is a superfood and should be eaten everyday doesn’t mean you have to eat it.
If you truly want to make eating healthy a habit, then you need to create the right healthy grocery list.
It is all about YOU!
Below I am going to walk you through what categories should be on your grocery list and give you some examples.
These are just examples. I’m going to teach you a great reference to create for yourself to fill in these categories with what you prefer and will eat.
The goal here is to get you to create a healthy grocery list that you will stick to and enjoy, so it becomes a habit.
This is SUPER important. Your list will change overtime as you do.
Meet yourself where you are at now and improve little by little.
That is the way REAL SUSTAINABLE change is made.
If you are someone that eats fast food practically every day, your list might not include quinoa right now.
So, even if you make a list and you feel like it isn’t super healthy but it is slightly healthier than what you currently eat, then it is a step in the right direction.
For example, maybe you order pizza out a lot. Instead, have pizza and a side salad. Or try making homemade pizza.
Small changes like this are going to get you where you want to be! What do you have to lose?
Categories To Create A Healthy Grocery List
Again, these are just common examples to get you thinking. Next, we will get into building a personalized list.
Fruits & Veggies
Low Fat Cottage Cheese
Skinless Chicken Breasts
Nut Butter-low to no sugar
Low Sodium Black Beans
Low Sodium Pinto Beans
Now on to your reference guide.
What to Put On Your Healthy Grocery List
This is going to require a little work on your part, but really not much.
Especially since you will be able to refer back to it a ton!
Start by grabbing a piece of paper or opening a word document.
Then list all of these categories.
Under each category, write down as many healthy food options that you enjoy eating.
This is going to create your master healthy grocery list of items to draw from each time you need to make a list.
If it helps, write down whatever comes to mind and afterwards, get rid of the unhealthier items or items you prefer to stay away from.
Give this list some real thought and time. Dive deep. Don’t just list a couple fruits and veggies. Make sure your list has a variety of all different colors when it comes to fruits and vegetables.
Do a Google search to get more ideas if you are stuck. Or even take note the next time you are at the store.
AND if you come across something you are unsure about, maybe you have never tried spaghetti squash before, write it on a separate list as “To Try” items. Then, try a couple of those foods each week to see if they make the cut or not.
Once your list is compiled, keep a copy on the fridge so you can easily look at it when making your grocery list.
Creating A Healthy Grocery List On A Budget
If you are like most people, then you probably have a budget you like to stay within when it comes to groceries.
This can make it more difficult if you are super excited to make big changes to how you eat.
BUT there are ways to shop healthy without breaking the bank.
1. Check your stores ads and coupons.
You can find some great deals when you check the ads or coupons for the stores that you frequent. Many now even have their own apps.
Or check out ibotta which can really help you save more!
This will take a little extra time, but really you could do this while watching TV.
Doing this can also help spark meal ideas by looking what is on sale that you want to buy and coming up with a dish based on those items.
For example, if broccoli and peppers are on sale, you could decide to do stir-fry, use it for a salad, or to make a breakfast egg bake, just to name a few things.
2. Skip Organic
If you have ever really looked at the produce section, you will see that there is typically an organic section. You might see select section in the meats and egg sections as well.
Now, this may be a little healthier for you, but it is usually more expensive.
Eating foods that aren’t organic, such as vegetables that where not locally grown, is still a win.
If you can’t afford the extra cost, don’t let it be an excuse to cross that item off your list.
You are still going to benefit from eating those foods.
3. Go For Frozen
There has been a debate for a long time about whether frozen fruits and vegetables are as good as fresh.
Frozen fruits and veggies still hold plenty of nutrients that are great for your body.
Many times, you will notice that frozen can be cheaper than fresh.
And, subject to where you live, some items may not be in season or look as fresh as you would like. Which makes frozen a great alternative!
So, if you are trying to make a healthier grocery list on a budget, you can always switch between fresh and frozen, depending on what the best deal is.
4. Skip Name Brand
Now, I will admit that there are a few items that I buy name brand because I prefer the flavor.
But there are a lot of foods that taste identical whether it is name brand or not.
When you are shopping on a budget, off brand or the grocery store brand can save you money.
Tips To Successful Grocery Shopping
Making a grocery list is one thing, but the follow through is just as important.
Keep these tips in mind for creating your grocery list and when you are shopping. These will help keep you on track!
This is the number one tip I can give you. Planning is going to be your friend for many reasons.
Because you are making a grocery list you have already started to plan ahead.
By planning ahead, you also meal plan, so you are getting everything that you need. Not just items you think you will use.
This helps to reduce your trips to the store and saves you from throwing out food you didn’t use.
AND you can decide to make you meals as healthy as you want, which you will stick to because you already bought the ingredients.
This can go hand in hand with planning ahead and meeting yourself where you are at now.
Choose foods for your list that you are actually going to use and enjoy.
Again, back to the kale. If you don’t like kale, don’t waste your time buying it because odds are you aren’t going to eat it.
So be real with yourself!
That is why I say make gradual changes. Any progress is still progress.
Organize You List
If you follow the categories that I have laid out for you, you are going to have no problem doing this.
There is nothing worse than going to the store and having to walk from one end to the other a dozen times because your list is a mess and you keep forgetting things.
Maybe that is just me but when I go to the store I’m on a mission!
So, organizing your list is going to make your shopping much easier and stress free.
Check The Label
It never hurts to check the label on you foods. If you have go to items, take a look at several different brands to see which is the best option for you.
This is a good habit to get into if you are trying to do healthy grocery shopping.
And here is something to think about. Fresh fruits and vegetables don’t have nutrition labels. We all know they are good for us and aren’t full of additives that we can’t even attempt to pronounce.
If you aren’t sure what to look for on a label, check out this post. It will break it all down for you.
Focus On Healthy Items
For many people, when they get to the store their stomach takes over and they start shopping with their stomach.
Keep in mind your goal to choose healthier foods.
It helps if you stick to the perimeter of the store. This is typically where they stock the healthiest items.
They don’t stock the cookies next to the broccoli.
So, save yourself from going down isles you know you don’t need, which brings us to our final tip.
Stick To The List
If you stick to your list, you are going to be golden!
Vowing to just get what is on the list is going to save you from shopping with your stomach and help you get just the essentials.
If you are building your healthy grocery list around planned meals, then you know exactly what you need.
This helps you save money by not buying items you don’t need.
We covered a lot of different information so you know exactly how you can create a healthy grocery list and be successful when shopping.
Key point to take away and use for your next grocery list is this.
Make sure you are choosing foods that you are going to eat and enjoy.
Create a master list to make it easy to compile your list and help you shake things up a bit so you aren’t getting bored having the same thing.
Divide you list up into categories to make shopping a breeze and always stick to your list!
If there is a helpful tip that works really well for you, I want to hear about it. Join my Facebook group and develop your healthy habits in a supportive community!