Do you make a list every week? Do you ever forget a Shabbat staple and run out on Friday? Here’s one simple solution.
I thought I was so organized, with all my menus set weekly on a spreadsheet. Fill in the menu item, list what ingredients were needed, make a shopping list, divided by store (and if you don’t have a system yet, this download will help!).
My system, though, wasn’t perfect.
Why did I even need to write a new Shabbat shopping list every week when most of the items I bought weekly–with some variation here and there–were mostly the same? It seemed like too much effort.
Sure, I might swap out one dish for another or add an extra meat/chicken/salad/dessert, but the staples for Shabbat (however different for each of us) are mostly the same week to week, no?
I had another problem with my system. When I shopped at the beginning of the week, I’d have weekday meals and weekday lists on my mind. Then, when it came to shop for Shabbat later in the week, I might find myself in a different store.
But what if there was an item I needed in that store I had been to on Monday? How could I save myself the extra trip?
And how could I make sure I never forgot some of the staples, or prevent the need to run out on Friday afternoon?
The solution was very simple: Make A master Shabbat list.
I keep the list below on my phone in notepad and simply scan down whenever I’m in a store. So now, whenever I’m shopping, before I check out, even if it’s Monday, I can check, “Is there something in this store I’ll need for Shabbat?” This way I won’t need to double back (unless it’s perishable).
Most items on the list I keep on hand and don’t need to purchase weekly (i.e. Grape juice on sale? Stock up for a few weeks). But at least it’s not overlooked when I’ve run out. Of course, having a list doesn’t mean I can’t add an extra dish. But at least I have all the “essentials,” nothing is forgotten, and I don’t need to write the list week after week.
Notes in brackets are just my explanations and not part of the actual list.
My Shabbat Master List (Create Your Own!)
Soup Veggies [winter only]
Chicken Legs [winter only]
Matzah Ball Mix [winter only]
Sauce for Ribs [this varies week to week depending on the recipe]
Meat number 2 [for me, this could be yebra, mechshe, pulled beef tacos, a roast, or a chicken dish or a few of these, but there’s always at least one other meat item besides the ribs]
Peas or Keftes [peas + kibbe balls or ground meat + tomato sauce]
Prune, tomato paste, lemon, ketchup [these and the previous two items are lehme b’agine ingredients]
Chicken [with sesame]
(Maybe other mazzeh)
Shabbat breakfast item for kids [like Krispy yogurts or muffins]Barley
Chicken Consommé [winter only]
Onion Soup Mix