TikToker’s viral 6-1 shopping hack is designed to ‘control’ your money and time

One TikTok user’s grocery shopping hack has gone viral for its cost-saving and time-effective abilities, with fans of it saying it saves them from what can feel like a mundane, anxiety-inducing errand and its subsequent bill.

On 2 January, food connoisseur Will Coleman shared his 6-1 technique that has improved his experience at the supermarket with a video explaining his method of only going into the store knowing what you need. And according to him, this hack will work at any store from Trader Joe’s to the Los Angeles favourite Erewhon.

“It’s super, super simple,” he confessed.

Rather than mulling over the meals you want to make in the busy aisles, the Brooklyn-based creator urged his followers to stick to an specific pattern that covers six categories: vegetables, fruits, proteins, starches, spreads, and treats. Of course, allergy and dietary restrictions will dictate and alter a person’s items.

“You’re going to get six veggies, five fruits, four proteins, three starches, two sources of spreads, and of course, one fun thing for yourself,” he told Good Morning America. “Simple things like onion and garlic, that’s already two.”

“You could throw in a few different fun items like salad mixes -- or any fun vegetable that sounds good to you or is on sale -- and you’ll be surprised at how fast you eat through it when you’re cooking at home daily,” he continued.

For the most part, Coleman believes vegetables can be surprisingly cheap, so it’s best to go for more greens than having more protein options. Canned vegetables and fruits are encouraged for those on a stricter budget. However, if a certain weekly meal prep calls for a higher intake of protein, you can add one or two more to the list.

“Some days you may need five proteins compared to four proteins, but that’s way better than buying 10 proteins that you’re probably never going to use,” the money-saver said. “It’s just a way to get people on track, save money and have more fun cooking and be more explorative.”

Aside from cutting time at the supermarket, Coleman admitted his method has helped to reduce his food waste and lowered his weekly bill. The TikToker is constantly cooking for his channel and his family, but the 6-1 technique has still saved him “hundreds of dollars.”

He told Good Morning America: “I’m not throwing out food at all. When I go to the grocery store, I come back home with my particular groceries for the week, I know exactly what I have in my fridge, the exact meals I’m going to make, and I know how to use all the ingredients.”

If anyone, like him, has to make meals for up to four, the plan should be adjusted to satisfy that amount of people. Proteins can be doubled to ensure there’s enough food for seven days.

Although this firm hack may seem to limit meal creativity, Coleman argued it doesn’t have to if you use it as a base guideline. No specific items are required under each category.

“A big piece of feedback that I’m receiving is that people are being more explorative with their diets,” he said. “They’re not eating the same thing over and over and over. Maybe they’re going to the store and grabbing six veggies every single week to test the waters when it comes to cooking dinner or lunch or breakfast.”

The Independent has contacted Coleman for a comment.