Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (2022)

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Looking for the cheapest grocery list for a month? In this post I share with you two printable grocery shopping lists which include the healthiest and cheapest groceries to purchase, as well as a list of grocery stores to purchase these items from in 2021. One shopping list is for $170 per month and fits the Daily Dozen recommendations. The other list is for $100 per month and includes the cheapest and healthiest ingredients.

If you’re ready to minimize your grocery budget, keep reading.

Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (1)

Which cheap groceries to avoid

When grocery shopping on a budget, it’s important to memorize the cheapest groceries so you can easily plan your monthly shopping list. When shopping for cheap groceries, you also want to keep in mind which foods are healthy, and which foods can harm our health. In my opinion, it is better to purchase some items that are a little more expensive if they will make me feel good and healthy, rather than purchasing foods that are cheap but will make me feel sick and unhealthy.

Here’s the type of cheap foods to avoid purchasing:

  1. Highly processed foods
  2. Foods that contribute to diet related diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers
  3. Foods that contain unnecessary food additives such as food colorings and preservatives
  4. Foods that you are allergic to
  5. Packaged snacks

Which cheap groceries to buy

Here’s the type of cheap foods to buy:

  1. Fresh produce
  2. Frozen produce
  3. Packaged foods that are minimally processed
  4. Foods that are organic, or contain organic ingredients
  5. Foods that are basic and simple
  6. Foods that include ingredients that aren’t expensive

Why shop for a month of groceries at a time?

When you purchase groceries for a month at one time, it helps you stick to your food budget for a few reasons, including:

  1. Buying in bulk
  2. Stocking up on items that are on sale
  3. Planning ahead
  4. Shopping once rather than multiple times helps you avoid impulse purchasing items

What are the cheapest groceries?

The cheapest and healthiest groceries to buy are usually ones that are minimally processed and packaged. Keep in mind that food packaging and food processing costs food companies money, so they have to pass on these costs directly to you, the consumer. By purchasing groceries that are minimally processed and packaged, you are avoiding paying these extra costs.

Other groceries that are often the cheapest are ones that are:

  1. Bulk packaged items
  2. Items on sale
  3. Available at discount grocery stores
Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (2)

Where to buy the cheapest groceries offline

There are many places to purchase groceries for cheap, here’s where I have found the best deals on food offline:

  1. Farmer’s markets
  2. Produce stands
  3. Grocery stores that offer bulk sections, or allow you to purchase from them in bulk at a discount
  4. Grocery outlet stores, such as Grocery Outlet Bargain Market
  5. Local grocery stores that offer sales
  6. Trader Joe’s
  7. Large chain grocery stores

Where to buy the cheapest groceries online

Sometimes it may be more convenient, necessary, or cheaper to purchase your groceries for the month online. Another great perk of shopping online for your groceries is that you can see a running tally of how much your grocery bill will cost before purchasing. This helps you not go over your budget and makes it easy to swap groceries in or out of your shopping cart to meet your budget.

Lastly, many online grocery stores, such as Amazon, offer discounts if you sign up for a regular shipment of the items you use most often. For example, Amazon offers up to 15% off of items when you subscribe to have them automatically delivered to your home on your schedule.

Here’s a list of places that I have found online which offer great deals:

To maintain a healthy diet, it is important to make sure what you are purchasing at the grocery store is going to meet your dietary goals. I follow the Daily Dozen dietary recommendations from NutritionFacts.org. I use my printable Daily Meal Tracker PDF to keep track of my nutrition intake through the day to ensure I’m getting enough of each food.

  • Follow the Daily Dozen with me!
  • Daily Meal Tracker: Track your Daily Dozen and plan your meals

What to eat each month

Here’s the food needed per month to maintain the Daily Dozen dietary recommendations:

  • 93 servings Legumes (1/4 cup dry or 1/2 cup cooked)
  • 93 servings Whole Grains (3 pieces or 1/4 cup or 1/2 cup cooked)
  • 93 servings Fruits (3 pieces or 3 cups diced)
  • 62 servings Leafy Greens (1 cup fresh or 1/2 cup cooked)
  • 62 servings Vegetables (1 piece or 1 cup diced)
  • 31 servings Berries (1/2 cup fresh or 1/4 cup frozen)
  • 31 servings Cruciferous (1/4 cup)
  • 31 servings Seeds (1 tablespoon)
  • 31 servings Nuts (1/4 cup or 2 tablespoon nut butter)

Learn how to ration your food each month so you don’t run out, as well as print the above list:

(Video) Printable Grocery List

  • How to ration food + printable 31-day food ration chart
Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (3)

Big list of cheap healthy groceries

Here’s a list of foods that are the healthiest and usually cheapest groceries to purchase at the grocery store:

Legumes

Legumes are beans, lentils and peas. These can be enjoyed as whole legumes, or as a beverage such as soy milk or as a puree or dip, such as hummus. The cheapest legumes to purchase usually are:

  1. Black beans
  2. Pinto beans
  3. Chickpeas
  4. White beans
  5. Frozen green peas
  6. Canned green beans
  7. Unsweetened, unflavored Soy milk
  8. Peanuts
  9. Peanut butter
  10. Tempeh
  11. Tofu

Shop for cheap legumes at Walmart.com >

Whole Grains

Whole grains are grains that have not had their outer husk removed. This means they provide more nutrition that grains that have been processed, such as white rice and white flour. Here’s a few examples of cheap whole grains available at the grocery store:

  1. Whole wheat flour
  2. Whole wheat pasta
  3. Rolled Oats
  4. Whole grain cereal
  5. Brown rice
  6. Farro
  7. Brown rice cakes

Shop for cheap whole grains at Walmart.com >

Fruit

Fruits are easy to identify as most people know what fruit is. Here’s a few examples of the cheapest fruits at the grocery store:

  1. Bananas
  2. Apples
  3. Oranges
  4. Grapes
  5. Frozen mango
  6. 100% fruit juices
  7. Dates
  8. Raisins

Shop for cheap fruit at Walmart.com >

Leafy Greens

Leafy greens are vegetables that have dark green leaves (as opposed to salad greens). Here’s a few examples of the cheapest leafy greens at the grocery store:

  1. Kale
  2. Collard greens
  3. Bok Choy

Shop for cheap leafy greens at Walmart.com >

Vegetables

Vegetables include items that are not leafy greens or cruciferous vegetables. Here’s a few example of the cheapest vegetables at the grocery store:

  1. Carrots
  2. Onions
  3. Canned tomatoes
  4. Corn
  5. Zucchini
  6. Yellow squash
  7. Mushrooms
  8. Cornmeal
  9. Popcorn kernels

Shop for vegetables at Walmart.com >

Cruciferous vegetables

This is a class of vegetables that is in its own category called “cruciferous” because they offer specific qualities and health benefits. Here’s a list of the cheapest cruciferous vegetables to purchase at the grocery store:

  1. Cabbage
  2. Broccoli
  3. Cauliflower
  4. Frozen bags that contain these items listed above

Shop for cheap cruciferous vegetables at Walmart.com >

Seeds

Seeds are usually pretty inexpensive and you only need a small amount each day to meet your daily intake needs. Here’s the seeds that are the cheapest to purchase:

  1. Flax seeds
  2. Hemp seeds
  3. Sesame seeds
  4. Tahini (sesame seed butter)
  5. Sunflower seeds
  6. Chia seeds

Shop for cheap seeds at Walmart.com >

Nuts

Nuts are delicious and should be enjoyed sparingly because of their high fat content. However, they are also packed with nutrition and are part of a healthy, whole food plant-based diet. Here’s a list of the cheapest nuts available at the grocery store:

  1. Brazil nuts
  2. Almonds
  3. Cashews
  4. Walnuts

Shop for cheap nuts at Walmart.com >

(Video) GROCERY SHOPPING ON A BUDGET

Sauces, Herbs, Spices & Seasonings

Here’s a list of the cheapest seasonings for your meals:

Herbs, Spices & Seasonings

  • Dried oregano
  • Dried basil
  • Garlic powder
  • Cinnamon powder
  • Ground cumin
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Iodized salt

Shop for cheap herbs and spices at Starwest Botanicals >

Packaged flavorings

  • Rice vinegar
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Mustard
  • Yellow miso paste
  • Pickles
  • Olives
  • Marinara sauce
  • Tomato paste
  • Ketsup
  • Stevia extract
  • Cocoa powder
  • Sugar
  • Maple syrup
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda

Cheapest grocery shopping list for one month [2021]

The below list includes basic food items and does not include purchasing flavorings or herbs and spices. Try to purchase a few of these items each month to create a well stocked pantry without going over your food budget. Print this list and keep it in your recipe binder for easy access.

Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (4)

{Daily Dozen} Cheap grocery shopping list for a month

The prices listed below are approximate prices, based on recent purchases I have made at Farmer’s Market, Grocery Outlet and Trader Joe’s. This shopping list takes into account the need for variety of foods for a well balanced and delicious meal plan as well so you won’t get too bored eating these groceries throughout the month.

$170 grocery list for a month

Here’s a Daily Dozen budget shopping list with approximate pricing:

  • $16 – 8 32 oz. carton soy milk (32 servings)
  • $14 – 17 cans beans (about 60 servings)
  • $6 – 1 24 oz. peanut butter (about 21 servings)
  • $8 – 2 loaves sprouted grain bread (about 36 servings)
  • $4 – 2 lbs. rolled oats (about 24 servings)
  • $4 – 2 lbs. whole wheat flour (32 servings)
  • $2 – 1 lbs. brown rice (about 8 servings)
  • $6 – 30 bananas (30 servings)
  • $8 – 2.5 lbs. dates (about 30 servings)
  • $9 – 8 lbs. frozen mango (about 13 servings)
  • $7 – 5 lbs. oranges (about 10 servings)
  • $4 – 2 lbs. applesauce (about 7 servings)
  • $10 – 5 bunches of kale (about 30 servings total)
  • $10 – 5 bunches of collard greens (about 30 servings total)
  • $4 – 5 lbs. carrots (about 30 servings)
  • $7 – 8 yellow onions (about 30 servings)
  • $8 – 10 lbs. yellow potatoes (about 30 servings)
  • $8 – 5 lb. frozen or canned corn (about 15 servings)
  • $9 – 4lb bag organic frozen strawberries (52 servings)
  • $4 – 2 heads green cabbage (about 20 servings total)
  • $4 – 2 heads cauliflower (about 10 servings total)
  • $4 – 1 lb. ground flax seeds (60 servings)
  • $6 – 1 lb. walnuts (15 servings)
  • $7 – 1 lb. raw cashews (15 servings)

Approximate total: $169

Print this grocery shopping list and put it into your recipe binder for easy reference:

Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (5)

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$170 grocery list for a month

The prices listed below are approximate prices, based on recent purchases I have made at Farmer's Market, Grocery Outlet and Trader Joe's. This shopping list takes into account the need for variety of foods for a well balanced and delicious meal plan as well so you won't get too bored eating these groceries throughout the month.

This is a shopping list for one month for one person.

(Video) GROCERY SHOPPING ON A BUDGET

Diet Vegan, Vegetarian

Servings 30 days

Calories

Author Easy Vegan Meal Prep™

Cost $170

Ingredients

  • 8 32 oz. cartons soy milk $16 for 32 servings
  • 17 cans beans $14 for about 60 servings
  • 1 24 oz. jar peanut butter $6 for about 21 servings
  • 2 loaves sprouted grain bread $8 for about 36 servings
  • 2 lbs. rolled oats $4 for about 24 servings
  • 2 lbs. whole wheat flour $4 for 32 servings
  • 1 lbs. brown rice $2 for about 8 servings
  • 30 each bananas $6 for 30 servings
  • 2.5 lbs. dates $8 for about 30 servings
  • 4 lbs. frozen mango $9 for about 13 servings
  • 5 lbs. oranges $7 for about 10 servings
  • 2 lbs. applesauce $4 for about 7 servings
  • 5 bunches bunches of kale $10 for about 30 servings
  • 5 bunches collard greens $10 for about 30 servings
  • 5 lbs. carrots $4 for about 30 servings
  • 8 each yellow onions $7 for about 30 servings
  • 10 lbs. yellow potatoes $8 for about 30 servings
  • 5 lbs. frozen or canned corn $8 for about 15 servings
  • 4 lbs. organic strawberries, frozen $9 for 52 servings
  • 2 heads green cabbage $4 for about 20 servings
  • 2 heads cauliflower $4 for about 10 servings
  • 1 lb. ground flax seeds $4 for 60 servings
  • 1 lb. walnuts $6 for 15 servings
  • 1 lb. raw cashews $7 for 15 servings
Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (6)

Cheapest grocery list for a month

Use the below list if you must stick to a $100 per month budget and need to slightly veer off the Daily Dozen. The below shopping list is still fully whole food, plant-based, it just has a little less variety in order to meet the cheapest budget needs of $100 per month per person.

$100 grocery list for a month

If your budget is this low, consider reaching out to your local food bank for free groceries, and applying for local food aid in order to supplement your grocery bill to use the above list to meet the Daily Dozen dietary requirements.

  • $4 – 2 32 oz. carton soy milk (32 servings)
  • $13 – 17 cans beans (about 60 servings)
  • $6 – 1 24 oz. peanut butter (about 21 servings)
  • $3 – 2 lbs. whole wheat spaghetti (16 servings)
  • $16 – 4 loaves sprouted grain bread (about 72 servings)
  • $2 – 1 lbs. rolled oats (about 12 servings)
  • $13 – 63 bananas (60 servings)
  • $4 – 5 lbs. carrots (about 30 servings)
  • $7 – 8 yellow onions (about 30 servings)
  • $8 – 10 lbs. yellow potatoes (about 30 servings)
  • $8 – 5 lb. frozen or canned corn (about 15 servings)
  • $8 – 4 heads green cabbage (about 30 servings total)
  • $3 – 1 lb. ground flax seeds (60 servings)
  • $5 – 1 lb. walnuts (15 servings)

Approximate total: $100

Print this grocery shopping list and add it to your recipe binder for easy reference:

Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (7)
(Video) CHEAP MEAL PLANNING - FREE PRINTABLE!

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$100 grocery list for a month

Use the below list if you must stick to a $100 per month budget and need to slightly veer off the Daily Dozen. The below shopping list is still fully whole food, plant-based, it just has a little less variety in order to meet the cheapest budget needs of $100 per month per person.

Diet Vegan, Vegetarian

Servings 30 days

Calories

Author Easy Vegan Meal Prep™

Cost $100

Ingredients

  • 2 32 oz cartons soy milk $4 for 32 servings
  • 17 cans beans $13 for about 60 servings
  • 1 24 oz. jar peanut butter $6 for about 21 servings
  • 2 lbs. whole wheat spaghetti $3 for 16 servings
  • 4 loaves sprouted grain bread $16 for about 72 servings
  • 1 lb. rolled oats $2 for about 12 servings
  • 63 each bananas $13 for 63 servings
  • 5 lbs. carrots $4 for about 30 servings
  • 8 each yellow onions $7 for about 30 servings
  • 10 lbs. yellow potatoes $8 for about 30 servings
  • 5 lbs. frozen or canned corn $8 for about 15 servings
  • 4 heads green cabbage $8 for about 30 servings total
  • 1 lb. ground flax seeds $3 for 60 servings
  • 1 lb. walnuts $5 for 15 servings
Cheapest grocery list for a month [2021] {Printable} (8)

Big list of cheap meal ideas

Here are some meal ideas specifically for the cheap grocery lists above:

Cheap breakfast ideas:

Here’s six healthy and cheap breakfast ideas:

  1. Cereal or oats with plant milk and banana
  2. Toast with peanut butter and bananas
  3. Whole grain waffles
  4. Whole grain pancakes
  5. Fruit salad with seeds
  6. Fruit smoothie

Cheap lunch ideas:

Here’s five healthy and cheap lunch ideas:

  1. Hummus quesadilla
  2. Tofu sandwich
  3. Leafy green salad with beans and toast
  4. Pasta with vegetables and beans
  5. Lentil and vegetable soup with toast

Cheap snack ideas:

Here’s six healthy and cheap snack ideas:

  1. Air popped popcorn with seasonings
  2. Rice cakes with peanut butter
  3. Fruit salad
  4. Piece of fruit
  5. Chopped vegetables with hummus
  6. Fruit smoothie

Cheap dinner ideas:

Here’s six healthy and cheap dinner ideas:

  1. Pasta Marinara with Lentils
  2. Creamy vegetable casserole
  3. Lentil and vegetable stew with biscuits
  4. Vegetable and tofu stir fry
  5. Tempeh with cabbage slaw and potatoes
  6. Bean soup with cornbread

Cheap dessert ideas:

Here’s six healthy and cheap dessert ideas:

(Video) 12 Reasons Why Your Budget Isn’t Working [FREE PRINTABLE]

  1. Hot chocolate
  2. Bananas with peanut butter and fruit
  3. Fruit smoothie bowl
  4. Fruit smoothie popsicles
  5. Chocolate chips with fruit
  6. Dried fruit with nuts

Next reading: Grocery shopping on a budget (and 24 tips for sticking to your budget in 2021)

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FAQs

Is $200 a month enough for groceries? ›

For a single-person household, start at $200 per month. This will provide $100 for everyday groceries and an additional $100 to stock up on sale items. For a two-person household, start with $300 per month. This will provide $200 for everyday groceries and an additional $100 to stock up on sale items.

How do I make an affordable grocery list? ›

My Top 10 Tips for Creating a Grocery Budget (and Sticking to It)
  1. Track what you actually spend for a month. ...
  2. Budget per month, but plan per week. ...
  3. Name your priorities. ...
  4. Don't eat out. ...
  5. Prize (and plan) variety. ...
  6. Keep a fridge list. ...
  7. Learn to love your leftovers. ...
  8. Don't be duped by coupons.
Oct 8, 2014

What are the cheapest grocery items? ›

When it comes to cheap groceries, pantry staples are the big winners. This category includes dry and canned goods such as flour, oatmeal, chicken stock, nuts, nut butters and seeds.

How much should groceries cost for 2 people a month? ›

If you're a single adult, depending on your age and sex (the USDA estimates are higher for men and lower for both women and men 71 and older), look to spend between $229 and $419 each month on groceries. For a two-adult household, the figure above will double: $458 to $838.

How can I live on $100 a month for food? ›

To stick to a budget of $100 a month, or $25 a week, you'll have to eat for less than $4 each day. For breakfast, try a bowl of oatmeal with half a banana and a scrambled egg, which should cost less than a dollar. Get into the habit of repackaging ingredients from dinner for lunches the next day.

What is a good grocery budget for 1? ›

The average cost of food per month for one person ranges from $150 to $300, depending on age. However, these national averages vary based on where you live and the quality of your food purchases.

How can I feed myself $50 a week? ›

Here are some of my tips for surviving and thriving on a $50 a week budget:
  1. Use a shopping list. Perhaps you think this is a no-brainer, but many people routinely go shopping without a shopping list. ...
  2. Meal plan. ...
  3. Eat less meat – and cheaper cuts. ...
  4. Eat fruit and vegetables in season – preferably homegrown. ...
  5. Cook from scratch.

How can I keep my grocery bill under $30 a week? ›

  1. Start by figuring out how much you spend. Do you know exactly how much you spent on groceries last month? ...
  2. Plan your meals out and make a list. Before heading to the store, think about all the meals you want to prepare for the week and make a list of the ingredients you'll need for them. ...
  3. Stick to the basics. ...
  4. Go cash only.
Jan 13, 2017

How do you budget for food a month? ›

Use the 50/30/20 rule to budget for groceries

The 50/30/20 budget can help you work out how much to spend on groceries based on your specific income and expenses. Following this framework, you spend about 50% of your monthly after-tax income on needs, 30% on wants and 20% on sayings and debt repayment.

How much should a family of 4 spend on groceries in a month? ›

For a moderate budget for a family of four, you would spend $291.50 a week for groceries or between $1,166 and $1,263.5 a month. Liberal budget. For a liberal budget for a family of four, you can plan on paying $352.70 a week or between $1,410.80 and $1,528.10 a month.

How much should a family of 3 spend on groceries 2022? ›

It should come as no surprise that a family of three will spend a little bit more than a family of two—as the family grows bigger, so do the average grocery costs. Let's say the family consists of two adults and a little one (up to 6–7 years). Such a family of three would normally spend around $722 monthly.

How much does a family of 4 spend on groceries 2022? ›

March 2021 USDA guidelines on food cost – they streamlined the meal plan options for 2022 down to three categories. What is this? For a family of four, you're spending on groceries should fall between $590 – $1,383 a month (in 2021), which seems like a wide range; this comes to be about $136 – $319 a week.

Is it cheaper to buy groceries or eat out? ›

With consumer prices at a 40-year high, savvy consumers know they have to put more work into their shopping if they want to save a buck. But when it comes to food, you'll generally save money — and enjoy better nutrition — eating at home than dining out.

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