Grocery Shopping AdobeStock_331546816-Grocery-shopping-with-mask

13 Apr

12 Inexpensive Staple Foods to Add to Your Grocery List

You’re probably trying to keep your pantry stocked and your grocery budget low right now. But, it can be a challenge if you’re not used to meal planning or if you regularly just hop over to the grocery after work to get that one ingredient you forgot.

Signet is doing more than just bringing you ways to save money during this difficult time. We’re here to help you navigate the financial struggles that come with COVID-19. You can read more about what we’re doing here. 

So, how do you maximize your grocery trips right now? Here are a few tips: 

    • Plan ahead. Even if you’re doing grocery pickup, many times you may have to wait a day or two before it’s available. Plus, by planning ahead you’ll minimize the time you spend in the store, only going to the aisles you need to. 
    • Use digital coupons, paper coupons and cashback programs. Hopefully you’re already in the habit, but if not, start using these to help you lessen your grocery bills. Even $.10 back here and there can add up quicker than you realize. 
    • Make sure your list includes a little extra of the staples. Since you’re all at home, you may find yourself going through these staples a little quicker like eggs, milk, bread, cereal, etc.  
    • Think about shelf life. If you know you have a recipe coming up this week that you’ll use the fresh vegetables or you know your family will go through the entire bag of apples before they go bad, then definitely add these to your cart. But especially right now, it’s good to add more long shelf life items. Then, you can enjoy your fresh food and save these other items for if you can’t get back to the store right away. 

We’ve put together some staple foods to pick up that will last in your pantry but don’t cost a fortune. Plus, we’ve thrown in a few recipes, too. 


AdobeStock_164717137--Bowl of Tuna

    • Tuna packets or cans – It’s a protein punch with a very small price tag. Plus, it will last months if not years in the pantry, just be sure you check the expiration dates before purchasing.  Many people will make tuna salad, or even add tuna to their lettuce salads. 

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    • Oatmeal – A very affordable, easy breakfast but you can also use it to make hearty snacks like protein balls or no-bake chocolate cookies. 
    • Canned Soups – These are good to have anyway just in case of an emergency, but we recommend finding the canned soup that your family likes best and then stock up. There are many different flavors so make sure you like the one you decide to buy 10 cans of. 
    • Frozen Or Canned Vegetables – Honestly, just see which one is cheaper at the grocery that day. If you’re tight on freezer space though, it’s best to go with cans and leave your freezer for your meat. 
    • Canned Salmon – Did you know some canned salmon has 19 grams of protein in just one serving? A hamburger patty only has about 13 grams. Even though it’s canned you can dress this meat up by making salmon salad or salmon patties

AdobeStock_203736858- making biscuits

    • Flour – Now, sometimes you may be in a pinch and again, where you would have just hopped over to the store, right now you may need to make-do with what’s in the pantry. So, have breakfast for dinner with a simple biscuit recipe. Or make yeastless pizza dough. You might be surprised at the pizzas you can make with leftovers or some fridge staples. Have leftover hamburger meat? Make a pizza. Leftover chicken? Make a pizza. Do you keep pepperoni, spinach, peppers or bacon bits in your fridge or even just shredded cheese? Then you might be able to whip up a pizza. 
    • Cheese – Not necessarily cheap, but sometimes you can even freeze cheese for a longer shelf life. It’s a great addition to salads, omelets, or the pizzas we just mentioned.  Plus, sliced, real American Cheese (NOT cheese product) lasts a good while in the fridge if stored properly and gives you protein and calcium. It’s a great afternoon snack or for making grilled cheese if you’re needing a simple lunch or dinner. 
    • Dried fruits – Now, fresh would be cheaper, but these can last a good while and will help you keep your meals balanced if fresh isn’t an option. 

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    • Popcorn – Raw kernels, not the microwavable kind. With just a little oil and salt, you can cook this on the stove and quickly have a healthy, yummy snack. Store the kernels in an airtight container. 
    • Peanut Butter – It’s protein that can be added to many different recipes or even just to make a quick snack. Being home, we’re all a little more into the snacks these days, so make sure you have some healthier options. 
    • Rice – This can last a good while in any pantry and makes for a great addition no matter what meat you’re serving for dinner. 

AdobeStock_94572102--different types of dry beans

    • Beans – Unprepared beans are affordable and add some healthy nutrients to your diet. Just don’t forget that some beans require being soaked in water for a while before you can cook them. Here’s a Red Beans & Rice Recipe to try out. 


What you want to remember is to pack in protein, fruits and vegetables wherever you can. Stocking up on long shelf life snack foods won’t be very filling. So, keep your pantry stocked with things that will add nutritional value for days, if not years, to come.

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