How to write a shopping list

Yes yes I am aware that this post may come across as a bit ‘teaching granny how to suck eggs’ but just because it’s simple or obvious to some, it doesn’t mean it is to others.

This post is not so much about a list but about how to approach that most mundane of lists: the shopping list. We are all busy and would rather do something else but the reality is we need to eat. And with budgets tight, the best way to do so is with planning and organisation and cutting down on the multiple trips to the supermarket during the week which a) add unnecessary time pressure; and b) invariably end up with you spending more than you intended. So, this is my guide to how to approach writing and organising your shopping list. I hope you find some of it useful.

Preparing a Shopping List.png

And so I set my shopping list out in the same order (see pic of one of my scrawled lists below). And I make sure I check off my rough list as I enter items onto my clean list.


The great thing about setting it out in order of where things are in the supermarket is you don’t end up doing your shopping in a zig-zag way. This is annoying when it’s busy and you have a full trolley, and it’s annoying full stop when you have a child/children you are also dragging around with you and doing your best to convince that it’s a fun experience. Now, this approach is mainly if you are doing your shopping at the supermarket, but equally it will work for online shopping.

The beauty of this approach is that we only buy what is on the list and we have meals planned for the whole week. Some weeks, when work is busy and I am feeling particularly strung out and surrounded by chaos, I put the meal plan up on the fridge so that I always have something I can look at and feel a modicum of calm restored knowing that one thing I don’t have to worry about is what’s for dinner.

Blanche x

P.S. Has anyone else used the new scan and shop app thing in Sainsbury’s?! I’m completely hooked on it. Mr Blanche has yet to be convinced. Luddite.

P.P.S. Mr Blanche has just reminded me that we also do a freezer audit before compiling the list for any food we can use up as part of our meal plan. I’d already formatted the list though and cba to amend. So it’s right here at the bottom. Hope you find it.

*Not his real name

**Not her real name, but kinda wish it was




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