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October's Grocery Shopping Plans

Autumn Pears The Prudent Homemaker

Hooray for a sale! I'm happy to be able to do some stocking up this month. I've had a chance to organize what we have and really evaluate what we need, which is quite a lot. 

Consequently, I'll be spending a lot more this month than usual ($500) but many items I buy will last us for many months.

I have already gone to Winco, Target, and Sam's Club, and I'll make my online purchase this week as well. Then I won't head back to the store until the last week of the month for a second trip to Winco. Staying out of the store reduces the temptation to buy things that aren't on the list, and I'll have more time at home to get things accomplished.


Winco: ($82.39)


potatoes (20 pounds)

onions (50 pounds)

Great Northern beans 

brown sugar (only because I forgot to buy it at Sam's Club; it is 6 cents more per ounce at Winco; I bought 6.28 pounds)


spreadable margarine (2)

milk (3 gallons)


sour cream (10)

parmesan cheese (I plan on making and freezing a simple pesto with cheese, olive oil, and basil from the garden. I bought 5 containers of the shelf-stable store brand for this.)

La Victoria salsa (2)

corn tortillas



I'll go back the last week of the month for the following: (approx. $44)

Halloween Candy (their lowest-priced bulk candy, on sale the last week of the month, always ends up being lower than I can get on anything else even with a sale and a coupon. I'll buy extra of a few kinds to use for Christmas stockings.)


potatoes (30 pounds)




Sam's Club: ($159.57)


POM toilet paper  (3 boxes)

ketchup (1 114 oz. container)

vegetable oil (2 3-quart bottles)

vinegar (2-gallon package)

tomato sauce (3 #10 cans)

flour tortillas

mozzarella cheese (10 pounds)


1 box  (of 4 boxes) of gallon-sized  Ziploc freezer bags

1 box  (of 4 boxes) of quart-sized Ziploc freezer bags



Target: ( $166.93, and I got a $20 gift card and a $5 gift card to use next month. If you don't get the ads-and I don't--you can download the Target app, click the barcode symbol at the bottom, and there are two coupons for gift cards that come up. One is a $25 gift card when you spend $100 on baby items, and the second is a $5 gift card when you spend $20 on beauty items. Both are good through Saturday the 7th.)


Salon Graphix Unscented hairspray (4)

borax (4 boxes)

bleach (the store brand)

Neutrogena acne toner

Up and Up diapers ( I bought 5 boxes of size 4 diapers, which should last me 6 months.)


San Fransisco Herb Company: ($47.47 including shipping) 


red raspberry leaves

lemon verbena 

poppy seeds

cocoa powder


The garden is producing lots of basil, some oregano, a bit of chard, and I still have a few lingering pears that we are slowly harvesting.  There isn't much ripe now, but I hope that come December we'll have quite a bit to harvest. The weather is cooling a bit and the tomato plants have started to flower again. I'm planting my fall garden this month.


What are you stocking up on this month?

Canadian readers, please share your Thanksgiving deals!

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Tagged in: Grocery Shopping


  • Becky October 04, 2017

    Ah...the quest for butter. I'm still looking for a good deal, and have been for quite a while now. I'm going to have to bite the bullet and pay $3/box for a few to get me through until the holiday sales, which hopefully will include butter!

  • Cindy in the South October 04, 2017

    Butter is never a good price here... I buy margarine for $1.00...sigh

  • Rhonda A. October 04, 2017

    I agree, Cindy. I buy butter as a sale price @ $3/brick. I use mostly margarine for every day use, and butter for special occasions and special baked goods only.

  • Lorna October 04, 2017

    Yes I thoroughly agree here in Australia we don't get good prices on butter either. Here it is $4.85 for a 500g block and I am seriously looking for the gold leaf and plating on it but haven't found any so far :) .

    I have worked out that buying grocery gift cards through our vehicle roadside assist club gives us 5% off the face value of the cards so that is at least some small savings which do add up over the year.

  • Jennifer O. October 05, 2017

    $3 is a go to price for me on butter! This week it was $2.50 (super excited), thus the 10#. Butter is usually $5 a lb for regular and $6 for organic.
    Since I will be travelling this year for both Christmas and Thanksgiving, I won't be doing much baking, so this might last me through Easter.

    We do not use margarine at all here as we try to eat unprocessed food (allergies and sensitivities), but in past years when my budget was more pinched, I certainly did.

  • Mari in Maryland October 05, 2017

    Our Aldi's had butter at $1.89/pound a couple weeks ago. I bought 10 cartons. It was back to $2.99/pound last night.

  • Barbara October 04, 2017

    I do have a few questions. How do you manage/ use the huge cans of tomato sauce once opened?

    What do you use the red raspberry leaves for? Thank you for sharing your knowledge and talents.

  • If I am making spaghetti sauce, I turn the whole can into sauce. With 10 of us who like heavy sauce on our pasta, I can use the whole thing over 2 pounds of pasta and have some leftovers for the next day (not enough for everyone though). If I'm making sauce (the same sauce recipe) for pizza, I put the rest in freezer bags and freeze it. If I'm making enchilada sauce or steak sauce (steak sauce recipe also on my site) then I will either put the rest in the fridge in a glass container for another recipe that week or freeze it (but I usually just use it that week). For instance, I'll make a quadruple batch of steak sauce (which is awesome on black bean burgers, for example) and use the rest of the can for enchiladas. Sometimes I'll use the remainder in the can in a soup.

    Red raspberry leaves are high in iron, so they're good for anemia. They're also good to strengthen the uterus and are wonderful instead of ibuprofen (and in my opinion, even more effective) for menstrual cramps. It's great for backaches as well. You make a tea with them. I find I can make two cups with a tea ball; the second is only slighter weaker but still good, and I don't mind it cold, either, so if you live in a hot climate, drinking it cold is always an option. My eldest has noted that if she drinks it a week before her cycle, the added iron reduces her fatigue as well.

  • Mary October 06, 2017

    Thanks for the info on PMS, I’ll share this with my daughter. Anyone know what helps with menopause symptoms naturally? Thanks in advance.

  • Eve October 08, 2017

    I buy #10 cans of tomato sauce as well as corn, green beans, peaches, etc. There are usually only three of us, so I pour the excess into half-gallon Mason jars and put in the fridge. I make spaghetti sauce and also use the tomato sauce for a stew I make, and so we get about three meals from each #10. If you make a menu plan, you can figure out in advance what meals to make in order to use up the refrigerated sauce or veggies before they spoil. The #10 cans are way less expensive than regular 15-16 oz. cans, especially at Costco or Sam's Club.

    I also use the peach juice from canned peaches to make peach jelly as well as the juice from canned corn. I get a lot of use from #10 cans at a better price.

  • Elizabeth M. October 04, 2017

    Brandy, I'm so glad to see you have some cash to do some stocking up.

    I've been grateful the last few months, which have been pretty lean, to be able to use my pantry and freezer items. This month I had a little more income, and was at a point where I needed to buy a grocery order. Only some basics so far, really, no stocking up:

    Oatmeal, eggs, potatoes, pasta sauce, dry cat food, cat litter, toilet paper, meat (ground beef, bacon and a thick slice of ham), milk, coffee.

    I am out of white sugar and oil and butter and vanilla, so there's not any baking going on. There are still lots of frozen berries and brown sugar to go on the oatmeal and berries for desserts or snacks, though, and the cleaning products are still in good supply. I also still have lots of fresh cabbage and beets, and enough pasta and rice to go to the end of the month. A coworker gave me tomatoes from her garden and has promised me zucchini and spaghetti squash.

    At the end of the month, I'll be able to stock up on potatoes and winter squash and start to get some food items for Christmas baking and meals.

    For Canadian Thanksgiving, there have been specials on turkey at 98 cents a lb (80 cents US) and hams for $10 ($8 U.S.) (about $2.50 a lb.), but I'm happy with the nice slice of ham I got, and garlic mashed potatoes to go with it, and berries with icing sugar sprinkled on top.

  • Margaret @ApproachingFood October 04, 2017

    Elizabeth, where in Canada are you? You're not in Toronto, by any chance? Because I kind of overstocked on sugar and other items and would be happy to give you a bag of baking supplies.

  • Rhonda A. October 04, 2017

    Elizabeth, this recipe for BANNOCK might help you out, since you bought some bacon:
    *3 cup flour
    *1tsp salt
    *2tbsp baking powder
    *1/4 cup butter/margarine melted, bacon grease or beef drippings
    *1 1/2 cup water

    Mix dry ingredients in large bowl. Pour measured liquids over flour mixture with a fork to make a ball. Turn onto working surface and knead gently about 10 times. Pat into flat circle 3/4" to 1" thick. Cook in greased fry pan (can use bacon grease) over medium heat, allowing 15 min each side (use 2 lifters to flip), OR bake on greased baking sheet @ 350C for 25-30min. Serve hot with butter or desired topping.
    NOTE: You can divide the dough into smaller balls if desired, but may need to adjust cooking times. I have had bannock with dried fruit mixed in as well, which is very tasty. Bannock is a very simple bread, similar in taste to tea biscuits.

    Also, if you are close to Peterborough, I'd be happy to supply you with some food items from my pantry as well. I assure you I am very well stocked and can happily spare some!

  • Elizabeth M. October 04, 2017

    Margaret and Rhonda,

    Thank you both so much for your kind offers. I'm all the way in Northern Alberta, so we're only close in spirit!

    The bacon turned out to be quite lean, so I am working around not having any oil or fat to work with for the next couple of weeks. I can make Brandy's French bread recipe and could use applesauce instead of oil in baking, but I think I will work with what I already have. I do enjoy all the food that's in my house, and have some variety, so I'm not feeling deprived. It is especially easy when I know the budget will be improving and I'll be able to have other favorites soon.

    Have a very happy Thanksgiving, both of you.

  • Juls Owings October 05, 2017

    thanks for the recipe. My daughter just texted me while on her break and asked for a bread recipe without yeast as she's out of bread and yeast. Blessings

  • Cindi October 04, 2017

    Yay for stocking up!
    I did a lot of stocking up last month.
    This month I'm on the lookout for a sale on potatoes, and I'll buy a pumpkin or two to bake, puree and have in the freezer to eat throughout the year and use in baking. I'm going to the local herb store today to replenish some spices, and to Target to buy supplies for making laundry detergent. I've had good luck lately finding good deals in the marked-down meat section at the grocery store, so I will continue to check there for any really good deals, but I mostly plan to stay out of stores. November is usually another good stock-up month for me and I want to save money to use then.

  • Becky @ Becky's Place October 04, 2017

    Two things I can think of right away are butter and cocoa powder. I used the last of the cocoa powder yesterday to make lower-carb brownies. That came from the grocery store and was a generic brand. I am looking for something with deeper flavor this time, maybe the Hershey's Dark cocoa powder, though I think it's just the regular kind at Sam's Club so I'm not sure where or what I'll end up finding. But I am off to check out the price at San Fran Herb, but shipping will likely kill the deal for me. The butter is getting too close to being out for my comfort. I think I have 2lbs in the freezer left. A chain convenience store is still in their grand opening so I will stop in there, hopefully in the next several days, and get maybe 10lbs (if they'll let me) at $2 per lb.

  • Meredith October 04, 2017

    Brandy - is the cocoa powder from that company the best price you've found per pound? I need to buy quite a bit and usually I've found it to be best priced at Walmart (Nestle brand) or at our King Soopers (Kroger) (store brand - but I'm not sure they carry it anymore!). Thanks!

  • I really would need to recompare, actually! I know they require a minimum $30 order, and it's a dutch process cocoa; I like the taste better than Hershey's, which is what I can get locally. I've never seen Nestle cocoa powder for sale. So for now I am just going to order a pound with my other items.

  • Alli October 05, 2017

    Have you checked in the bulk section at WinCo for cocoa powder? I know prices can vary greatly for groceries, but our WinCo (Utah) has had cocoa powder for around $2.50/lb.

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