Grocery Shopping Never Ends

Remember how I went grocery shopping last week and said "but it doesn't feel like I bought any food?" Well, I was right on that count.

Examining My Grocery Spending

Since May is Food Month, I thought I’d share my recent grocery purchases.

Everyone does groceries slightly differently; I am a Bert, so I’m a list-maker and I have a place for everything in the refrigerator and I always put my refrigerated food back in the same spot.

I also eat pretty much the same meals every day: breakfast is cereal, fruit, and coffee with a multivitamin; lunch is a sandwich with either meat or PB&J filling, a cup of soup from a box, and more fruit; dinner is a big salad and something to go next to it (pasta, fish, rice, etc). I always keep frozen burritos and nacho supplies at the ready in case I need a really quick meal.

So here’s what I bought this week at my local QFC. In this list, the “not purchased this trip” category designates foods I might otherwise have purchased if my refrigerator weren’t otherwise stocked.


—Kroger Bite-Sized Frosted Shredded Wheat, two 18 oz boxes: $5.00 (two for $2.50 special)

—Soy Delicious Unsweetened Cashew Milk Beverage, two 32 oz boxes: $5.00 (two for $2.50 special)

—Hurst’s Berry Farm blueberries, two 6 oz packs: $5.00 (two for $2.50 special)

—VitaFusion MultiVites Complete Multivitamin Gummies, 150 ct: $13.99

(not purchased this trip: coffee, coffee filters)

“Vegan, Gluten-Free Chocolate Brownie: $4.50″

Forget you, Fresh Direct; peace out, Peapod. A bright-eyed and bushy-tailed new competitor, Good Eggs, wants your money in exchange for delivering groceries to your door. The company seems built to appeal to Brooklyn, which is one of only four places it currently operates: there’s free delivery to the borough, for starters, and its mission “is to grow and sustain local food systems worldwide.” However commendable the goal, and even, it seems, the methods, there’s something unavoidably “Stuff White People Like” about the endeavor. The vegan, gluten-free chocolate brownie ($4.50!) is described this-a-way:

Super dense and intensely chocolately, you won’t miss the gluten in this brownie. Perfect with a cup of ice cold almond milk! Our sweets contain exclusively organic, nutrient-dense, virgin, and certified raw ingredients. We use low-temperature cooking methods to retain healthy enzymes and nutrients. No processed flours, sugars, gluten, animal or dairy products, or genetically modified additives go into any of our sweets.

So, uh, almost $5 for a brownie that has nothing in it but dark chocolate? A Hershey bar will run you a lot less than that.

Is a locavore-oriented and more ethical grocery delivery system the answer to your no-time-to-food-shop prayers? Or are you already satisfied with your CSA, FreshDirect habit, or other hacks to stock your pantry, like using Postmates or TaskRabbit to get someone to bring you the condiments you’re addicted to from Trader Joe’s?

Cartoon by Charrowan artist in Brooklyn.

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Grocery Spending Via Food Pyramid

The other day, I wondered how my grocery store spending matched up with the old U.S. Department of Agriculture's food pyramid, which they retired in 2011 (I have yet to accept their new plate chart), so I pulled up an old receipt I had on file to see how it would turn out. My dairy spending tends to be on the lower end because I usually will buy a tub of yogurt and a carton of organic milk every other grocery shop. Anyway, this is among the things I sometimes think about, which makes me perfect marriage material if you ask me! Excuse me while I load up on some more carbs.