Shop smart and save money when you shop for two.Buying grocery items in bulk may seem like a way to save money, but soggy salad greens and mystery meats in the back of the refrigerator mean wasted dollars! Here are the top ten tips for saving time and money at the supermarket when planning fast and healthy meals for two.
1. Avoid waste, use the salad bar! A full container of cherry tomatoes or a whole bag of shredded cabbage may be an impractical purchase, so select just what you need at the salad bar.
2. Six-ounce bags of greens, such as spinach, arugula, watercress and mixed salad greens, are perfect for serving a pair.
3. The 6- or 7-ounce cans and pouches of tuna, salmon, sardines and crab are perfect for two.
4. If you need shrimp, buy peeled frozen tail-on shrimp. These are usually sold in 2-pound bags but you can take out what you need when you need it without having to defrost the whole amount. Some supermarkets also have bulk freezer bins of shrimp.
5. Makes friends with your local butcher! Order exactly the amount of meat, chicken, fish or seafood you need. If your local supermarket only sells prepackaged meats, wrap the extras tightly and freeze them.
6. One 14-ounce can of broth works well when making soups for two. When you only need part of a can of broth for a recipe, freeze the rest of the can to add to sauces and soups at a later date or try using a low-sodium bouillon, such as Herb-Ox.
7. The 7- and 8-ounce cans of beets, chickpeas and regular and no-salt-added tomato sauce are just the right size and handy to have on hand for dinner.
8. Small drink boxes of 100% juice are convenient for making sauces and salad dressings, without a lot of extra juice left over.
9. Substitute whole-wheat pita breads for a large ball of dough when making pizza. It’s quicker, and you won’t be tempted to eat more than your share. Leftover pitas freeze well too.
10. Buy smaller servings of dairy products—pints of milk, 6- and 8-ounce containers of yogurt, 4-ounce containers of cottage cheese and 3-ounce blocks of cream cheese.