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Stocking up for the zombie apocalypse

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Due to the fact that I work the graveyard shift, running errands can be a bit difficult. To get around this problem, I generally only go to the grocery store once or twice a month.

We have a decent-sized fridge for storing fresh foods and a separate freezer for when we buy in bulk. I also keep a stocked larder because you never know when you’re going to need to eat from what you already have in the house.

Prior to leaving for the store, I sit down with my menu cards, cookbooks and recipe programs to plot out all our future meals. Next, I open the Clear app on my phone and create a list of ingredients. If I’m cooking at night and I notice that we’re getting low on a particular item, I’ll also add it to the shopping list. Lastly, I rearrange the list into aisle order, from produce to meat, from pantry items to dairy/frozen goods. This may sound like a ridiculous step, but I’ve found that building the list in this fashion keeps me from forgetting an item or having to backtrack.

Once at the store, I lock my purse and cloth bags to the shopping cart and don a set of headphones. The other end of the cord is plugged into my phone and tuned to a second app: Zombies, Run! You’d be amazed at how quickly you can knock out a month’s worth of grocery shopping when the undead are chasing you.

I’m sure I look quite silly during this process, particularly when I react aloud to the story’s twists and turns, or start mouthing the words to the songs, but who cares? I’m doing my chores and getting much-needed steps — all while being entertained.

What do I buy? Here’s a typical shopping list:

Bananas
Pears
Apples
Plums and/or peaches
Oranges
Lemons and/or limes
Grapes
Pineapple
Berries
Romaine lettuce
Peppers
Broccoli
Potatoes
Onions
Garlic
Shallots
Celery
Carrots
Asparagus
Baby bok choi

Pepperoni
Black forest ham
Hard salami
Ground beef
Chicken thighs
Chicken breast
Whole chicken
Pork chops
Bacon
Pork tenderloin
Skirt or ribeye steak
Some sort of seafood

Whole wheat hamburger buns
Chicken broth
Northern beans
Black beans
Pinto beans
Basmati rice
Arborio rice
Gnocchi
Spaghetti
Fettuccine
Angel hair
Shells, mac or lasagne
Evaporated milk
Sugar
Brown sugar
Flour
Bread flour
Tuna
Flour tortillas
Chipotle peppers w/adobo sauce
Crushed tomatoes
Panko
Soy sauce
Corn chips
Popcorn
Cashews

Heavy cream
Mozzarella
Cheddar
Pepperjack
Butter
Milk
Frozen fruit and veg
Ice cream and/or chocolate

With these items in stock, I can create a tasty mixture of meals full of fresh and shelf-stable items. Plus, I generally manage to buy everything for about $300, which is pretty decent considering I make from-scratch meals for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert.

So, what does your grocery list look like? And do zombies chase you, too?

4 Comments

  1. Only once or twice a month? Wow. I shop three or four times a week!

    And I’m impressed by your organization when shopping. I find myself constantly going back to aisles I’ve already been in because I’ve forgotten something.

  2. I’ve been thinking about doing a grocery post for two years. My shopping habits have changed immensely since I lived in Germany, and I’ve fallen into the (very weird) habit of taking a photo of my groceries before I put them away on each trip.

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