We’ve briefly mentioned few times how we are changing the way that we eat, especially the next month as we utilize our new VitaMix and as we are trying to eat more fresh fruits, veggies and fresh foods. With that in mind, we decided to go to the store this past week and do what is called “perimeter only” grocery shopping.
What this means is that we only shop the perimeter of the store and avoid the aisles meaning we hit the produce, dairy and fresh foods departments and that is pretty much it! We wanted to see the results ourselves from doing this type of shopping this past week and look at it from both the health and budget perspective. The perimeter of the grocery store is actually where you spend the most amount of money, even if you use coupons!
So with that being said, we visited two separate grocery stores from the same chain of stores in different suburbs in our community! We wanted to hit both stores to see if it made a difference in terms of our finds. Now obviously, the sales in each of those fresh food departments are going to be the same, and we did get a handful of the fresh foods that were on sale that week – but in terms of what other deals we could find were quite different.
Before we share our results, we need to point out the obvious. We picked up quite a few markdowns – these will not be consistently the same, nor something you can count on each time you go shopping for your budget. They will not be a reliable way to shop to stay within budget on a normal basis, but it worked for us this week and it shows to keep your eyes peeled for those unadvertised deals. What is possibly not obvious however is that each week you will see markdowns. And when you adjust your family’s diet to use the markdowns from that week, you can save money and see those savings reliably in your budget.
Here’s what we bought:
- 2 whole organic milks 1/2 gallon on markdown for $1.19 each (down from $3.69 each)
- 1 Horizon Organic Milk 1/2 gallon on markdown for $2.59 (down from $4.69)
- 2 heavy whipping cream quarts on markdown for $2.59 (down from $5.69 each)
- 1 Lactaid milk on markdown for $1.50 (down from $3.99)
- 4 dozen Egglands Best brown cage free eggs on markdown for $1.59 each (down from $3.69 each)
- 1 whole fresh rotisserie chicken cooked on markdown for $3.59 (down from $5.99)
- 2 bags of fresh spinach on markdown for .99 each (down from $1.99 each)
- 1 bag of lettuce on markdown for $1.49 (down from $2.99 each)
- 5 head of orange or purple cauliflower on markdown for .79 each
- 2 packages of portobello mushrooms on markdown for .79 each
- 1 package of fresh organic Rosemary on markdown for $1.09 each
- 4 packages of baby carrots on markdown for .89 each
- 1 package of mushrooms on markdown for .89 each
- 1 package of wheat tortillas (from the bakery – still on the perimeter ) on sale for$1.00 each
- 3.1 lb.s of asparagus on sale for $1.99 this week = $6.17
- 1 sour cream on sale for $1.25
- 1 block of fresh cheese on sale for $3.78
We did also find a clearance rack in the dairy department that did have “aisle” foods, but it was found on the perimeter.
- 3 boxes of microwave kettlecorn on markdown for .49 from damaged boxes (down from $1.00 each)
- 3 boxes of organic instant oatmeal (for our upcoming road trip) on markdown for $1.99 each (down from $3.99)
- 1 French’s Fried Onions on markdown for $1.79 each (down from $3.49) These are NOT healthy, but we use them in cooking occasionally, so they can be nice to have on hand . We then used $0.50/1 French’s French Fried Onions 02/12/2012 SS Insert (exp 04/15/2012) The only coupon! = $1.29
Even with all of this, we are still hoping to regularly hit a grocery store that is a little further from us that has consistently very good prices on produce year round (e.g., for items such as oranges and bananas) that we had on our list but didn’t find on markdown or sale this week.
The total was $57.07 after all of the regular sales and the markdowns and ONE coupon We are not sure of exactly how much we saved (as our receipt does not show savings on markdowns), but we figure it is in the ball park of 50 – 55% on FRESH ITEMS! We are very thankful for the finds this week.
In addition, our 7-year old spent time before dinner churning (in a food processor – LOL) the heavy whipping cream into butter for us and with the quarts, we ended up with 2 lbs. of butter from that and 1 full jar of buttermilk! She was so excited when we used her fresh butter to make our chocolate yogurt cake last night as it really made her feel like a very needed part of the process! We kept some of the butter out and froze the rest! See how to make homemade butter an easy way!
See more of Our Shopping Trip Results