This is Day 4 of my new series, 31 Days on a Keto Diet.
I am participating in 31 Days, an online writing challenge started by home blogger, Myquillyn Smith (The Nester), and now hosted by Crystal Stine, where bloggers pick one topic and write a post on that topic every day in October. We all link up just once on day one so that we can see all the topics and read the ones that most interest us.
Day 1: What is a Keto Diet?
Day 3: Menu Planning on a Keto Diet
DISCLAIMER: Although I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing, I am not a physician. I do have extensive experience with eating the ketogenic way, and I have cured my health problems with a ketogenic diet. I am not guaranteeing that this diet will work for you or cure your health problems. I am just sharing what I know about ketogenic diets.
HOW I MAKE MY KETO SHOPPING LIST
The first thing I do is to go through my menu planning process…
- I print out a Blank Shopping List.
- Then I start plugging in all of the regular items I buy from my Keto Shopping List…coffee, milk, eggs, salad stuff…
- Next I plug in all of the things that I have noticed that I need to complete my menu plan.
- Then I go through the sales at my usual grocery stores, and write down all of the deals on meat and fish. These will go in to the freezer for the future. I don’t buy for this week. I buy what is on sale and save it for next time.
- I try to go to ALDI for as much as I can. They have a really good selection of produce and their prices are great. Last week their strawberries were priced at 99 cents, and they were $2.50 at the grocery store down the road.
Here is a list that I keep as a master shopping list. It contains most of the items on the “What Can I Eat?” list that my family and I eat on a regular basis.
And here is a blank version of the shopping list for you to fill in!
KETO SHOPPING TIPS
1. Know your grocery stores. Most grocery stores are organized with the good stuff around the outside aisles: produce, meat, dairy, seafood. Temptation and carbohydrates lurk down the center aisles. Leave your grocery cart on the end of the aisle and make only short scouting missions down the aisles in the middle of the store.
2. Read the labels. Carbs hide in many places. All food that comes packaged and processed should be checked for carb count, taking serving size and the list of ingredients into account as well. An item that has a low carb-count, but has flour, sugar, or corn syrup as it’s first ingredient, is probably not a good carb choice. When you find a good low-carb item (pasta sauce or salsa, for instance), write down the brand name and variety on your shopping list for future reference. Or, when you run out, save the label.
3. Look in your cart. Before you check out, take a good, hard look at your grocery cart. All the food in it is going to be eaten by you or someone you care about. Sugars, preservatives, wheat flour, corn syrup – are these hiding in your cart contents somewhere? Choose wisely, and don’t be embarrassed to re – shelve the stuff you know should not be there.
IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE EXPENSIVE
4. Shop the sales. Remember that usually food sales run from Wednesday to Tuesday (our local Krogers stores run from Sunday to Saturday). All of the local grocery store chains have their sales flyers online (Foodlion, Harris-Teeter, Kroger, Lowes). Match the coupons in the Sunday paper to the sales in the grocery stores, and shop for savings early in the week.
5. Shop smart. If you have a warehouse club card, use it for bulk purchases of meat to be frozen for later use. If you don’t have a warehouse club card, check out your local Hispanic grocery stores (not the little tiendas, but the actual markets like Galaxy or Compare). They have good meat prices, beautiful produce sections, and weekly sales as well. In addition, you can find delicious low-carb products you can’t find elsewhere (frying cheese, fresh string cheese, fresh pork skins, etc.).
6. Protein is protein. Your body doesn’t know the difference between a chicken leg quarter (cheap) and boneless, skinless breasts (expensive). Because you know that “fat is your friend,” you don’t need to pay extra for “lean” cuts of meat or ground beef. Use your slow cooker to make a tender beef stew or shredded pork BBQ with cheaper cuts. Don’t forget eggs; buy them in bulk, and they are even cheaper.
7. Eat at home. If you are on a low-carb diet and you eat out a lot, you may find that you do spend more money (a steak is usually more expensive than a plate of pasta). Even fast – food places that offer low-carb options usually charge a premium for them. Take your lunch to work or school, and use the planning tips above to help you get in and out of the kitchen fast. Eating at home also helps you avoid temptation and hidden carbs – both of which are easily found in restaurants.
8. Avoid low-carb specialty products. With only a very few exceptions (almond flour & xanthan gum), your grocery list should look just like everyone else’s – without the pasta, flour, beans, and rice. If you really miss some of those carby treats like muffins and brownies, learn to make a low-carb version at home or give them up altogether. Substituting expensive, highly – processed low-carb food for expensive, highly – processed high – carb food is not doing your body or your wallet any favors.