Open Arms of Minnesota

SNAP Challenge: Shopping at Walgreens

By Kevin Winge

Day one of my second annual SNAP Challenge is off to a good start. Knowing that some SNAP recipients have transportation issues, this year I’m shopping for all of my food at my nearest convenience store – Walgreens. My SNAP week is off to a good start, not because of the kind of food I was able to purchase at Walgreens, but because – with careful shopping and coupon clipping – I was able to really stretch my $30.25.

Open Arms’ registered dietitian did a great job of creating a Walgreens menu. What she didn’t know, however, is that many of the items on my menu would be on sale this week. For example, a gallon of skim milk was $2.99 instead of $3.49. Although I really dislike canned green beans, and probably haven’t eaten any since elementary school back when Lyndon Johnson was President, I was excited to see that a single can was only .69 with a coupon compared to its usual price of $1.79.

The bottom line is that I spent $8.09 less than I thought I was going to. That meant I could splurge on a box of Grape Nuts cereal and still have $5.30 remaining in my budget for the week. I’m holding off until Walgreens coupons come out next Sunday to see what else I might buy for later in the week.

Here’s my grocery list so far:

Ramen Noodles (6 pack) – $1.89

Coffee – $3.99 on sale (not food, I know, but I gotta have it)

Gallon of Milk – $2.99 on sale

Dozen Eggs – $1.89

Wheat Bread – .99 on sale

Yogurt – .69

Oatmeal – $2.59

Peanut Butter – $2.99

Can of Green Beans – .69 with coupon

Can of Fruit Salad – $2.19

Raisins (1 oz. 6 pack) – $1.00

Grape Nuts Cereal – $2.79 on sale

Now it’s time to enjoy my first SNAP breakfast: a cup of coffee, 8 ounces of milk and one cup of oatmeal.

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