April 27, 2020

The quarantine changed the way we do our grocery shopping at malls in the Philippines. Before this, we used to finish grocery shopping in one hour, but now it takes us at least 3-4 hours.


We’re all trying to survive with our hoard by going through long lines and practicing physical distancing. But of course, it would go us well to save some time.


This is why it’s a great tip to have your grocery list on hand before heading to the mall’s supermarket.


A complete and organized shopping checklist saves time, effort, and your mobile data (because then you wouldn’t have to video chat with your mom/partner every now and then).


When listing down your grocery items, keep these in mind: buy nutritious food, the essentials, and save time.


  1. Canned Goods & Frozen Foods

Canned goods and frozen foods are the best to stock up on just because they can last for a longer time. Not to mention they’re convenient for those who can’t cook or when you’re running out of gas.


For a healthier choice, you can opt for canned sardines and tuna flakes, both rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids.


There are lots of options for frozen foods in mall supermarkets in the Philippines:

  • Fruits – Strawberries, mixed berries for vitamin C-rich snacks.
  • Vegetables – Frozen broccoli, green peas, and mixed veggies.
  • Meat and poultry – Chicken, ground pork/beef, and other meat cuts.
  • Seafood – Bangus, cream dory, salmon fillets, squid rings, shrimp, and other frozen seafood are longer lasting and easier to cook than fresh seafood.


  1. Grains & Dried Foods

Have enough stock of rice and dried pasta, as both can also last longer and are versatile food items.


Unleash the inner master chef in you by trying a variety of rice/pasta dishes with different ingredients. There are lots of recipes to check online.


Also, add beans and legumes to your list. Monggo, black beans, and lentils are good sources of protein, fiber, iron, potassium, and other nutrients. They can also fill you up quickly!


Tuyo, daing, danggit, dilis, and other dried fish are affordable even when buying it from malls in the Philippines.


  1. Long-Lasting Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

grocery at shopping malls in philippines

To stay healthy, we all need a variety of fresh fruits and veggies in our diet. Although right now, it’s a challenge to get fresh produce.


A friendly tip: choose those with long shelf life or ones you can freeze. Make sure to only buy what you can consume until you next mall grocery run.


Here are some of the fresh produce with longer shelf life:

  • Apples
  • Citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, limes, etc.
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet potato (kamote)
  • Squash
  • Carrots
  • Cabbage
  • Garlic and onions


You can shop in the frozen fruit and vegetable section. After shopping, consume within the first week. Once the fresh ones are consumed, you can proceed to the frozen ones.


  1. Cooking Essentials 

Let’s just stick to basics if we’re saving some time and money. We’ve listed down the must-haves on your mall grocery list:


  • Cooking oil – Canola, coconut, vegetable, corn, and olive oils (lasts for a year)
  • Soy sauce – Lasts up to 6 months
  • Vinegar – Indefinite shelf life
  • Fish sauce – Once opened, lasts for up to 6 months
  • Tomato sauce – Once opened, lasts for only up to 10 days in the refrigerator

  1. Snacks and Beverages

It’s so hot right now, even when we’re inside our homes! Staying hydrated is as important as having enough food. Buy least one gallon (or 3-4 liters) per person per day for at least 3-7 days.


If you’re a real coffee addict, we recommend ground and whole coffee beans rather than instant coffee.


Make sure you won’t go hungry. You can also include these energy-boosting snacks:


  • Crackers, biscuits, and cookies
  • Peanut butter
  • Granola bars
  • Popcorn
  • Instant oatmeal


  1. Baby & Pet Foods/Products

Make sure you have baby formula and other essentials (such as diapers and baby wipes) useful for at least two weeks. If you’re a fur-parent, don’t forget their food supplies (make sure to get both wet and dry options).


  1. Toiletries

More than ever, we must practice personal hygiene. Here are some personal care essentials that should be on your list:


  • Bath soap – Five bars or one pack
  • 70% isopropyl/ethyl alcohol – 2 pieces
  • Hand sanitizer – 2 pieces
  • Facial wash
  • Shampoo
  • Toothpaste – 4 tubes
  • Toilet paper – 10 pieces or one pack
  • Feminine products (feminine wash, sanitary napkins, etc.)

shopping malls grocery philippines

  1. Home Cleaning Products

Keep your home free of viruses and germs at this time. Make sure to buy household disinfectants, bleach, dishwashing soap or liquid, and other cleaning supplies.


  1. Medical Supplies

It’s best to have enough stock of medicine and other medical supplies. In fact, the American Red Cross recommends keeping at least one month’s supply for prescription and over-the-counter medicine.

The following should be on your list:


  • Face masks
  • Multivitamins
  • Paracetamol
  • Cough and cold medicines
  • Throat lozenges
  • Pain relievers
  • Thermometer
  • Any prescription medicines


shopping in malls philippines

Final Thoughts

Don’t forget to check with DTI guidelines regarding the maximum limit of shopped items. Once you have your list, you’re more than prepared to battle it out at the mall grocery in the Philippines.


Also, remember to always wear a mask, practice social distancing, and use a hand sanitizer or rubbing alcohol when entering or leaving the mall/store. And when you get home, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds.