Have a Game Plan
Once you are done unpacking your UCF apartment, a trip to the grocery store is typically the next step to getting settled into your apartment. It's important to go to the store with a game plan, especially if you are hoping to stick within your grocery budget.
Coordinate With Roommates
Before you go to the store, formulate a method with your roommates for organizing everyone's food. Whether it be assigning a cabinet to each person or having baskets to keep food organized, it is critical to determine the best method for food organization before your trip to the grocery store.
How Big Is Your Haul?
You should decide how frequently your grocery shopping visits will be. This will ensure that your grocery trips are more efficient and will reduce impulse purchases (your wallet will thank you). For example, if you decide to go weekly, then create a list of meals you want for that week and only buy what is needed for that week. Consider adding a mix of home-cooked and ready-to-eat meal options to allow for time flexibility that week.
Below are a few lists of grocery essentials! Hopefully, they will help kickstart your own grocery list and help you remember essential items you would have otherwise forgotten.
Pantry and Non-Perishable Items
Non-perishables are a college staple! They are super convenient for a midnight snack while studying and will always be there when the fridge items are long gone.
- Chips / Crackers
- On-the-go snacks (granola bars, nuts, fruit snacks)
- Pasta and pasta sauce
- Rice (microwaveable rice is a must!)
- Root vegetables (potato, onion, garlic)
- Canned vegetables
- Protein powder
- Condiments (ketchup, mayo, dressings, etc.)
- Basic spices (salt, pepper, garlic powder)
- Oil (vegetable, olive, or avocado oils are good options)
- Coffee and tea
- Aluminum foil
- Ziplock bags
- Paper plates
- Paper towels
- Plastic utensils
Refrigerated Items / Fresh Produce:
- Fruit (some can be stored in pantry or counter)
- Vegetables (carrots and celery are great for a healthy snacking option!)
- Cold cuts
- Salad (salad kits are great and require little effort to make!)
- Meat of choice (just put it in the freezer if you don't cook it before the expiration date)
- Drinks (water, milk, juice, etc.)
- Cream cheese
- Dips (salsa, humus, etc.)
- Smoothie fruit mixes
- Breakfast (waffles, pancakes, etc.)
- Microwavable meals
- Ice Cream
Essential Cleaning Supplies
Before buying cleaning supplies, make sure to have a conversation with your roommates to see what they are bringing! It's a good idea to formulate a plan and allocate certain cleaning items to roommates that will be beneficial for the whole apartment. For example, you likely don't need three Swiffer's taking up precious space!
- Toilet brush, plunger, and toilet bowl cleaner
- Multipurpose cleaner (to clean countertops and showers)
- Dish soap
- Dishwasher detergent
- Dish sponge
- Trash bags
- Toilet Paper
- Personal toiletry items
Grocery Stores Near UCF Campus
- Publix: 4250 Alafaya Trail Ste 148, Oviedo, FL 32765 (1.8 miles from UCF)
- Walmart: 4255 Alafaya Trail, Oviedo, FL 32765 (1.8 miles from UCF)
- Target: 325 N Alafaya Trail, Orlando, FL 32828 (4.3 miles from UCF)
- Sprouts Farmers Market: 1121 Alafaya Trail, Oviedo, FL 32765 (4.8 miles from UCF)
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