Epic Grocery List for PCOS [According to a Dietitian]

Have PCOS and are wondering what you should be eating? Well you aren’t alone! With all the contradictory information out there, it can be so confusing. 

You are in the right place though, because I am going to tell you exactly how to make a grocery list. Stay tuned because I am also going to give you my EPIC grocery list for PCOS. 

In this blog, we will review why making a list is important, how to make a list, foods to include in a list, how to use my list and I will answer some commonly asked questions. 

Why should you focus on planning a grocery list with PCOS?

Planning for your grocery trip is so important for many different reasons. To explain this, we will first need to review a little bit about PCOS and some of the common symptoms. 

What is PCOS?

PCOS is an endocrine, or hormonal, disorder that affects many different functions of the body. It is characterized by an increase in androgen hormones like testosterone and DHEA (1). 

This imbalance of hormones can cause various symptoms including (2):

  • Increased cravings
  • Insulin resistance
  • Excess hair growth
  • Acne
  • Decreased fertility 

PCOS can also increase the risk of illnesses such as (1):

  • Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus 
  • Hypertension
  • Coronary Heart Disease
  • Kidney Diseases 
  • Obesity

What role does nutrition play?

Considering the increased risk of illnesses listed above, nutrition can play a huge role in the prevention of all of them. It is so important to get an early start on fueling your body with the best nutrients in order to reduce risk of illness. 

Getting the right balance of nutrients daily can make a huge difference in preventing chronic disease (3). 

For these reasons, planning out your grocery trip is so important. Planning your list can help you to make the best food choices. When we go without a list or a plan, many of us do not choose the healthiest items, we forget things that we need, or we end up just getting takeout. 

Making a list ensures that you are buying what you need, focusing on the right nutrients, and it reminds you to add some variety. Most of us tend to buy the same things week after week because that’s what’s easy. Making a list can help to add some variety. 

Why is variety important?

Adding variety to your diet is important because it increases your satisfaction from your meals and it also impacts your gut microbiome (4). Hello gut health!

Making sure to eat different types of plant foods weekly can help to increase the diversity of the bacteria found in your gut. This diversity in bacteria can help to prevent some chronic diseases and can even help you to manage your weight (4, 5).

How to Make a Grocery List

Make a Meal Plan

To make a grocery list, you want to first start with a meal plan. Meal planning is an important step of the process since it determines what exactly you need to buy at the grocery store.

If you want to learn more about meal planning, check out my blog post all about it here

Determine what you already have

You should start your grocery list process by accessing what items you already have in your fridge and pantry so that you don’t waste your money and time buying something that you already have. 

You may also take note of some items that you need to use up soon and you can be sure to work those into your meal planning. 

Create categories

Making one long list of food items that you need from the store can be overwhelming, so I suggest sorting things into categories. 

The categories that I like to use are produce, meat/seafood, dairy, pantry, and frozen.

 Components to Include

  1. Protein rich foods
    • Meat, seafood, dairy, eggs
    • Edamame, tofu, tempeh
    • Protein powders
  2. Fiber rich foods
    • Nuts and seeds 
    • Whole grains
    • Vegetables
    • Fruit
    • Beans and lentil
  3. Healthy fats
    • Fatty fish 
    • Nuts and seeds
    • Cooking oil
    • Avocados
    • Olives
    • Hummus
    • Full fat dairy

My Epic Grocery List

Below is a copy of my complete grocery list which includes pantry essentials and includes categories that you can choose from when making your own list. Keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list, it was created for you to use as a guide for your own grocery planning. 

Sample Grocery list for PCOS. Includes list of fruits, vegetables, frozen, pantry staples, oils, condiments, dairy, and protein.

How to Use my Grocery List

First you’ll want to print my list so that you can write on it. Then grab a pen and a highlighter. 

Next go through the grocery list and highlight items that you are interested in trying to eat more of. You can also cross through any items that you may be allergic to or just know that you don’t like. 

Once you have some items highlighted, you can start meal planning! Again, my post about meal planning can be found here. You can also grab my free meal planning guide in that post. 


Can you eat popcorn with PCOS?

Yes! Popcorn is an excellent source of soluble fiber which is very helpful for insulin resistance and cravings. Be sure to pair your popcorn with a source of protein and healthy fats. 

Are oats good for PCOS?

Absolutely they are! Be sure to choose rolled or steel cut oats vs quick cooking oats. Quick cooking oats may increase blood glucose levels faster. Oats are a great source of fiber. Pair with protein, extra fiber, and a healthy fat and you have a complete meal!

Check out my blog post here that answers this question in more detail!

Is peanut butter ok with PCOS?

Peanut butter is a great addition to your diet if you have PCOS. It has protein and healthy fats. It is also very filling and should keep you full for a good amount of time. My favorite way to eat it is mixed with greek yogurt and used as a dip for apples. 

Key Takeaways

Making a great grocery list is crucial for eating a healthy diet with PCOS. Including the right types of foods can help to prevent many chronic diseases that are associated with PCOS and can help to manage symptoms (3). 

I’ve shared with you my grocery list so that you can use it as a guide for your own grocery list. I encourage you to pick 5 items that you haven’t tried or don’t usually eat and try to add them into your grocery list. 

To get my grocery list in pdf format straight to your inbox, use the form below and I would love to send you my epic grocery list!

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