Your weekly trip to the store doesn’t need to be a hassle. 

Buying groceries doesn’t need to be a hassle. According to private chef Lauren Rose O’Leary, there are ways to maximize your time and decrease stress. Here are five tips to simplify grocery shopping.

Peruse the perimeter! Most grocery stores are organized in the same layout. Produce, dairy, bread, seafood, and meat tend to line the edges of the store, while items like snacks and canned goods are in the center. Avoid overspending by staying away from the aisles.

Buy directly from the butcher. You’ll be able to customize your meat selection and ask about proper cuts for your recipes. Though prepackaged meat is easier to grab, it’s often left sitting on the shelves for hours. You’ll be able to ensure the freshest cut by consulting your local butcher.

Head to the store early! Supermarkets often restock their cold cases and refrigerators when they receive deliveries first thing in the morning. Those who arrive an hour or two after the store opens will be able to snag the freshest produce and meats.

Pay attention to sales! Promotions are often a sign of items in season. Fruits and veggies that are purchased during their prime often have a better flavor. Saving a few extra cents in the process is just an added bonus.

Organize your grocery list based on the store’s layout. If you’ve shopped at the location multiple times, you’ll most likely know how the store is organized. Making a list that’s formatted to the layout will make for a better transaction and deter any impulse spending.

Stick to these tips next time you shop and you won’t dread the frequent chore!

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