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Making a grocery list seems simple enough. People have been doing it for generations—you simply write down what you need, and take the paper with you to the store. The thing is, there are a lot of ways this can go wrong: When you’re in the living room finishing a snack on a cozy night, are you really going to shed your blankets to walk into the kitchen and write a note reminding yourself to get more? And what if you forget the list on the way out of the house? Or your roommate or spouse offers to stop at the store on the way home, but you miss the text and don’t send them the list in time?
Look, these aren’t world-ending catastrophes, but these scenarios are inconvenient. That’s why you should consider using a designated app for your grocery lists to eliminate these common grocery-shopping pitfalls and make the process of procuring your essentials easier. Here are some of the best grocery-shopping apps, based on your needs.
If you need to share your list: Grocery List Ease
Grocery List Ease, available on the App Store, has two functionalities that are really useful: First, you can send your list to other people who don’t have the app and second, you can keep a pantry inventory, as well as a grocery list. You can scan barcodes to easily add items to your list too.
If you need ideas about what to do with the food: Big Oven
Getting the food on your list is one thing. Actually turning it into a meal is another entirely. While you’re more than welcome to check out our recipes here at Lifehacker, you can also use Big Oven to keep track of your grocery list and figure out some recipes that will utilize your new foodstuffs, as the app boasts over 1 million. Find it on the App Store and Google Play.
If you need a plan of attack at the store: AnyList
Stores can be overwhelming and even with a full list, you might forget something from a section that isn’t near the food aisles. AnyList is a smart app because it automatically sorts your entries by categories like “dairy” or “health and personal care.” This makes it easy to walk into Target with a game plan. Get it on the iOS App Store or for Android.
If you have a full house: OurGroceries
As the name implies, OurGroceries is all about the shopping needs of multiple people. Available on iOS and Android, this app allows anyone in your household to edit lists in real time, plus you can log in on a desktop (and it even works with your Apple Watch).
If you also want to save money: Flipp
Yes, all of these apps make grocery lists. But not all of them clip coupons for you. Flipp, available for iPhones and Androids, helps you save at over 2,000 retail locations by finding coupons and making them easy to access. Enter your loyalty card details into the app, and it’ll automatically apply your coupons for you.
If you want to know nutritional values: OptUP
Maybe your kid wrote “cheese crackers” on your list for the week. Fine. They deserve a treat. But every kind of cheese cracker has different nutritional content. OptUP makes it easy to see which one is best for your needs. It assigns nutritional scores from registered dietitians to any food you can think of and recommends swaps based on what you’re looking for. It’s free on Google Play and the App Store. It’s made by Kroger and works best if you use a Kroger Shopper’s Card at checkout, as it then tracks your purchases and makes unique recommendations based on your habits.