Grocery shopping made easy

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As I mentioned before, grocery shopping isn’t exactly my hobby. It’s not so much the shopping that bothers me, but rather that the whole process seems overwhelming sometimes. It sure doesn’t work for me to ‘just go’ without any preparation – I’ll end up going back to the store for several items I forget.

Which – truth to be told – actually isn’t such a major problem, since we have the supermarket practically around the corner. It’s just that I like to spend my time otherwise than to bicycle back and forth to the shopping mall for a tube of toothpaste or a box of eggs.

So, to avoid unnecessary trips to the stores, I at some point came to the conclusion that it might be smarter to plan ahead. And it finally became a habit. Twice a week I check what is left in the fridge, freezer and pantry, and then I sit down to check the weekly ads from my favorite supermarket – I do that mostly online. Based on the sales I write down a dinner menu for the next three to four days. And then I make my list.

Grocery shopping list app for iPhone

A few years ago I used to write my list down on paper, but then I discovered the Reminders app which is a standard app on the iPhone. I started to use this to create a grocery shopping list. I loved the feature to check off the items I after I had placed them in my shopping cart, it helped me remember that little jar of dried coriander or the sachets of baking powder I otherwise might have overlooked on my paper list.

It worked great for years, the only complaint I had was that there was no logical order in my list. The items were just randomly added to the list, and sometimes I had to go back to the beginning of the store for the spring onions I needed for my Tuesday dinner, because the produce items weren’t clustered together.

Milk for Us

Recently another app caught my attention: the grocery list app Milk for Us – Grocery Shopping List with Sharing – Daniel Rinser. It’s free and downloadable through ITunes. I decided to give it try, and I was pleasantly surprised!

Milk for Us grocery shopping list app
Screenshots from ‘Milk for Us’

In the above image you see three screenshots I made. In the left one you see Shopping Lists. You can create a shopping list for each store, or for each type of products. A week ago I had to buy some gifts and needed to go to another store for that, so I made a list ‘gifts’ besides ‘groceries’.

In the middle screenshot you see my grocery list that I use for the supermarket I usually visit. The developers have prepared an extended list of regular products, but you can always add your own items to it, and select and aisle for each one.

This is the feature that really added value for me: the grocery list is sorted by aisles and you can easily add and rearrange aisles so that it matches the store you visit (see the screenshot on the right). My store starts with produce (fresh and refrigerated), and then I usually walk by the spices, the canned foods and the meat section, etc.

Sharing with family members

The app has an option for a syncing feature which allows you to share the list with other family members. In that way I could make a list, and my husband could fetch the groceries on his way home from work. However, since I am the only one in this household doing the regular groceries, I haven’t used it yet. This feature is only $2,99 per 12 months though, so I might give it a try in the future.

Good preparation is half the work

I really like ‘Milk for Us’. The app helps me to thoroughly prepare my grocery shopping trip, and it saves time while I’m in the supermarket, since all items are logically ordered and I can simply check them off. And it always helps me to put things down on a list, so that it clears up space in my head. It gives me some peace of mind knowing that I can rely on that list and not have to remember it all. Because my mind is full enough already!

What are your tips to make grocery shopping easier?
Do you use shopping lists?

– Anne


22 Comments

  • Jenny

    July 4, 2017

    Planning ahead is so important. I don’t particularly enjoy it either and to both stay on budget and get everything I need I have to plan ahead! Great post!

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      Planning ahead also helps me stay on budget! Thank you for your comment, Jenny!

      Reply
  • Sarah

    July 4, 2017

    Oh this is good stuff!!! I love making lists and have been using just my notes app on my iPhone. Which is great but no way to mark it off. So I will definitely be checking out this app you suggested. Seems like it might be a great fit for me!

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      I truly recommend it, Sarah! It helps me a lot.

      Reply
  • I had never heard about this app. I love that it is shareable, perfect to share with a family member stopping by the store.

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      Yes that’s a great feature! Thanks for your comment Emily!

      Reply
  • Yolanda

    July 4, 2017

    I love apps like this. I haven’t heard of this one before so I’ll have to check it out. The app I use if called Flipp and it’s not only great for meal planning but super easy for price matches. This is all much better than the lists I used to make on scrap paper!

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      I will check that app out! Thank you for your comment Yolanda!

      Reply
  • Kenyatta Harris

    July 4, 2017

    I need this in my life! Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      Thanks for commenting Kenyatta!

      Reply
  • Danielle Fairhurst

    July 4, 2017

    This looks like an awesome little app! I’m horrific when I go shopping without a list so I’m definitely going to have to try this out 🙂
    Dani x | http://www.flourishingfreelancer.com

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      It absolutely is a great app! Thank you for commenting Danielle!

      Reply
  • I love apps that make life easier. Definitely need to check this one out!

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      I absolutely recommend it 🙂 Thanks Corey!

      Reply
  • Nicole

    July 4, 2017

    This is so cool! I really need to plan ahead more when it comes to my food, because I end up eating out a lot and it’s not good for my health or my budget. Maybe a grocery app like this would help me out!

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 7, 2017

      I know that problem! When I have a prepared a list, I stick to my healthier and less expensive choices. Thanks for your comment Nicole!

      Reply
  • This makes SO. MUCH. MORE. SENSE. than the reminders app, which is what I use. Like you, it drives me crazy that there is no logical order. I am definitely going to try out this new app, it looks like it will be a big time saver. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 7, 2017

      Seems we had exactly the same problem! I truly recommend this one, it works great! Thanks for your comment, Paula!

      Reply
  • Keri

    July 5, 2017

    This is great! I am going to check it out! I feel like every week I am rewriting basically the same list. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      The Milk for Us app remembers which products you’ve used recently – so all I have to do is check them again to put them back on the list. I love that! Thanks for your comment Keri!

      Reply
  • Teresa

    July 6, 2017

    Okay, I need this app! I get so frazzled when I’m grocery shopping, and my paper list hasn’t been cutting it. This will definitely keep me more organized.

    Reply
    • Anne

      July 6, 2017

      It works that way for me! Thanks for commenting, Teresa!

      Reply

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