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Jour 181: 5 great apps to save money grocery shopping

So, I totally got an iPhone yesterday (after 102 days of PHONE-FREE LIVING) and I quickly began to assess which apps would be the best, most frugal ones to get.

Here are 5 that I'm excited to try...

1) Today, I tried Grocery IQ (free), which is a thing where you type in your grocery list and, as you buy stuff, those things are shunted to the bottom of the list. I was describing this to my Frugal Companion, who looked thoughtful and then said, "So... basically like a piece of paper, then?" And, kinda. But without the hassle of always trying to find a pen and a hard surface to write on.

It was a total frugal win, since I usually intend to use a shopping list, but never quite get around to it. With this app, it's still so new and novel that I followed the list very carefully - even adding stuff that I'll need to get the next time. So Grocery IQ is a frugal #win. (There are a zillion other apps that do the same thing, but this one works, so why look elsewhere?)

2) I also downloaded Harvest ($1.99) which is an app that helps you buy produce. There's a very lengthy list of every kind of produce you can imagine, and when you click on a veg it pops up with info about how to shop for it - what the colour and texture should look like, when it's in season, etc. It also has a list of how likely it is to have lots of pesticide on it - which is crucial for figuring out what you should buy organic and when the normal version is just as good. (Which saves money - because organic produce is more expensive and, in the case of avocado for instance, the non-organic variety should be just as healthy).

3) What's In My Fridge ($0.99) is an app that does just what it says - it records what you've got in your fridge, giving you warnings when something needs to be used up and preventing you from purchasing something at the store you've already got. I also just got this, and intend to itemize my fridge tomorrow to see how it works - as a Librarian, the capacity the catalogue every food item in my house is too tempting to resist, frankly. Next thing you know, I'll be putting Dewey Decimal labels on everything...

4) I've also downloaded Keyring Reward Cards (free) - an app where you take photos of each of your points cards, which you can then scan at the store. Never again worry about forgetting a card behind (unless, I suppose, it's the sort of card where they stamp it, rather than scanning a barcode). Frugal #win! (Although I haven't actually scanned my cards into it yet, I fully intend to. I've had this phone for a day, give a girl some time...)

5) And finally, inevitably, I've also downloaded Angry Birds (free). I don't know what's frugal about it other than it's free, but I got obsessed with this like it was 2008. Those stupid smug pigs deserve to be smashed with the eyebrow-heavy birds, dammit! I guess it can be frugal because I'm going to spend all my time playing this game, rather than spending money, perhaps.

What apps do you guys use to keep your grocery shopping a frugal and fun experience? Why are the birds so mad at the pigs? Why are the pigs so AWFUL and so DESERVING OF BEING DESTROYED? So many questions.

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