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I tried the viral 6-to-1 grocery-shopping method. I saved money and wasted less food.



  • I tried the viral 6-to-1 grocery-shopping method to see if it could improve my life.

  • The method focuses on picking up simple ingredients to make diverse meals throughout the week.

  • I saved money and minimized food waste, so I plan on using the 6-to-1 method again in the future.

If you love grocery-shopping and cooking content on social media, you’ve probably come across the 6-to-1 method, a process that aims to simplify meal planning and reduce food waste.

The 6-to-1 grocery-shopping method went viral when Chef Will Coleman posted a video on TikTok about how he grocery shops. The method involves buying six vegetables, five fruits, four protein sources, three starches, two sauces or spreads, and one fun item.

According to Coleman, this process of focusing on simple ingredients can help shoppers save money.

Here’s how the method worked for me.

It took a minute to get the hang of grocery shopping using this method, but I left with lots of great items

Produce laid out on a black table, including tofu, bread, bananas, apples, and peppers

When I got home, I realized I definitely had enough food for a week’s worth of meals.Paige Bennett

My usual shopping process involves planning my meals, checking my kitchen for what I already have, collecting coupons, and making my grocery list.

Coleman’s method seemed adaptable, as a shopper could go into the store, buy the items they like in each category, and then meal plan based on what they purchased.

At first, seeing six veggies and five fruits on my grocery list intimidated me. I follow a vegetarian diet, but it still sounded like a lot of produce to stock up on. However, I quickly maxed out in these categories.

Throughout my shopping trip, I had trouble deciding on three starches and got a little creative with the categories. For example, I bought Greek yogurt, which could be a protein, to fit into my sauces category.

I left with the following groceries:

  • Vegetables: carrots, spinach, salad mix, bell peppers, jalapeño, and mushrooms

  • Fruits: apples, cherry tomatoes, bananas, blueberries, and frozen raspberries

  • Proteins: great northern beans, chickpeas, eggs, and tofu

  • Starches: spinach-and-ricotta ravioli, petite potatoes, and whole-wheat English muffins

  • Spreads or sauces: plain Greek yogurt and Hershey’s chocolate-shell topping

  • Fun item: pistachio ice cream

Focusing on what I needed to build meals and skipping random items that didn’t fit into my plan helped me save money.

I spent about $60 on all of my items this trip. Normally, I spend between $70 and $85 on groceries in a week.

I repeated my breakfast and lunch meals throughout the week to save time

A breakfast sandwich made with an English muffin, spinach, an cheese, and slices of cheeseA breakfast sandwich made with an English muffin, spinach, an cheese, and slices of cheese

I used whole-wheat English muffins for my weekday breakfasts.Paige Bennett

I usually stick to one savory and one sweet breakfast and one or two lunches throughout the week. My lunches typically involve a salad or leftovers.

So, I did the same when I tried the 6-to-1 method. For the first breakfast, I opted for whole-wheat English muffins with nut butter, honey, and bananas or blueberries. The second meal consisted of egg, cheese, spinach, and hot sauce.

For lunch, I mixed chickpeas and fresh apple slices into spinach and a pre-bagged salad mix.

These meals were simple but utilized a lot of produce and saved time on meal planning.

I got more creative with dinners and weekend meals

A bowl with ravioli with pesto and tomatoes mixed in on a tableA bowl with ravioli with pesto and tomatoes mixed in on a table

I made spinach-and-ricotta ravioli with pesto, tomatoes, and mushrooms for dinner one night.Paige Bennett

I have more time to cook during evenings and weekends, so I tried to add variety to these meals.

One night, I made a spicy bean-and-tofu burrito with a Greek-yogurt dip.

I also made spinach-and-ricotta ravioli with pesto I had in the freezer, and added mushrooms and cherry tomatoes. Another pasta dish I made included bucatini and Parmesan I already had, as well as spinach and tomatoes.

On the weekends, I roasted, quartered, and shredded potatoes for hash browns and made veggie and fried-egg dishes.

I ate more fruit with the desserts I made during the week

A chocolate-chip cookie on a white plate with red raspberries mixed into batterA chocolate-chip cookie on a white plate with red raspberries mixed into batter

I used the raspberries I bought in chocolate-chip cookies.Paige Bennett

As a fun treat for my partner, I made our favorite chocolate-chip cookies with pantry staples and the frozen raspberries, which turned out delicious.

I also enjoyed pistachio ice cream with fruit and Hershey’s chocolate-shell topping when I craved something sweet.

Overall, the 6-to-1 method was handy, and I’d use it again

I used almost all the groceries I purchased for this experiment. Items that weren’t eaten by the end of the week, like the ravioli and carrots, were easy to save for later.

I definitely plan to use the 6-to-1 method again. I won’t do it all the time, but it’s especially helpful when I need to simplify meal planning or tighten my budget.

The plan is flexible, so I may swap out sauces and spreads for dairy or dairy alternatives some weeks.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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