The Great Debate: Grocery vs. Grocery Store

Living with people is a funny thing. Whether it be roommates or a husband, you learn a lot about yourself and a lot about them. I always try to prepare college freshman for this unique situation, but it’s just one of those things you have to learn through experience. A life lesson, if you will. Each of my roommates have been a completely different living experience, so there’s just no way to prepare someone for what may or may not happen. Some roommate situations are a beautiful thing, while others are completely disastrous. I think we can all agree on that. Anyway, what got me off on this whole tangent was something that one of my current roommates says that I’ve recently caught on to as well. Because we all know that living with people also means picking up some of their quirks for yourself. I find that actually humorous.

She calls the grocery store, “the grocery.”

For instance, if used in a sentence she says something to the effect of, “Hey y’all, I’m going to the grocery. Anyone need anything?”

The grocery.

For the longest time I gave her the hardest time, but more recently, I’ve been calling it the grocery while simultaneously kicking myself because what in the world? It’s the grocery STORE.

I pick up groceries at the grocery store.

This dawned on me this past Monday when I was about to head home from picking something up at my parent’s house and I said out loud, “Oh, before I go home I’ve got to head to the grocery.”

And then I stopped dead in my tracks. What did I just say?

I even googled it, because you know, the google is the answer to all life’s mysteries, but google was helpless to me in my time of need. Blast.

Although I was left stunned at my own ability to say “grocery store” I decided to make my list of items so I wouldn’t forget anything I needed.

This is what my list consisted of.

1) Apples
2) Peanut Butter
3) Avocados
4) Chocolate Almond Milk
5) Mascara

Otherwise known as my top five HEB (a Texas only grocery store) grocery items. These five littler items keep me frequenting HEB time and time again.

I realize one does not belong with the others, but that was my emergency grocery list.

I’m sure some of you are curious if I buy mascara every time I go to the grocery store, and I’m here to reassure you that no, that is not the case, but I do love me some mascara. Yes, yes I do. Thank you, Loreal.

It got me thinking that I can’t be the only one that frequents the grocery for certain items. We all have our go-to items that are on nearly every grocery list we make. And honestly, it has to say something about us, right?

I am the girl that can’t go a day without eating an apple with peanut butter. And the avocados? Well, why not? An avocado makes life better. As does mascara.

What are your top five grocery items? And because I’m a closure kind of girl, let’s settle the debate here and now: grocery or grocery store?

And yes, I just wrote an entire post about the grocery STORE. Deep thoughts, y’all.


309 Responses to “The Great Debate: Grocery vs. Grocery Store”

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  1. 101
    Cathy says:

    Love this post! I first heard it called “the grocery.” about 2 years ago when I visited my son at college in Tennessee, and I’m like you, it sort of got stuck in my head although I’ve never heard anyone else in Texas say such a thing. I thought it was absolutely charming. My grocery list varies depending on what season it is, what diet I’m on, and who happens to be in town, but if I run out of half and half for my coffee, I WILL be going to the store. Gotta have it.

  2. 102
    Sue Schlindwein says:

    I call it the grocery store, or just the store.

    My list is:
    1. Tortilla chips (I eat them every day)
    2. Meat
    3. Bananas
    4. Arnold sandwich thins
    5. Candy

  3. 103
    Margo says:

    I love just plain ol’ “grocery” and I think that’s what I’ll start calling it. I think bygone times it was called the grocer’s.

    1) English muffins
    2) half and half (for my tea, English style)
    3) strawberries
    4) another fruit to go with the strawberries
    4) some absolutely necessary item (like mascara! or deodorant! or toothpaste! or toilet paper!)

  4. 104
    Michelle says:


    1) butter
    2) half and half – for my coffee!
    3) bread
    4) eggs
    5) milk

  5. 105
    Sheri Lichty says:

    Definitely just say store myself, and the necessities always on the list:


  6. 106
    Heather says:

    So fun! I definitely go to the grocery store here in Pa. and the top five that most always hit my list here in our house of 10 are…
    1-saltly snacks like pretzels, popcorn, goldfish, chips, etc.
    3-tons of bread
    4-sliced american cheese from the deli

  7. 107
    Christina Dekker says:

    Not sure about top 5, but I never leave without Oreos. and yes I do go through them that quickly…

  8. 108
    April says:

    Boo to “grocery!” Same goes for calling a parking SPACE a “park.” I am appalled at how quickly those terms rub off on us! Tragic. Unfortunately, I’m splitting my weeks between a couple different states, so I can’t remember going to the grocery store like a normal adult. However, I have learned this summer that most of our essentials for life will fit in a backpack & can be replaced at Dollar Tree. (Except the mascara). πŸ˜‰

  9. 109
    Mel says:

    I’m with NurseRae – I’m going to the ” store”, or, if I want to be more specific, I’m going to either HEB or Brookshire Brothers. That let’s my husband know if I’m going to be gone an hour and a half ((HEB) or 45 min (Brookshire Bros). HEB for the good stuff, BB for the “quick” trip. The joys of living in the country. Now for the list:
    Dog food (they eat more and better than we do!)
    Salad stuff
    Bottled water

  10. 110
    Pam says:

    I’ve always said store as in need anything from the store? Or I’m going to the store. πŸ™‚
    1. Latest SF flav of creamer (just bought Pumpkin Spice @ Target last night)
    2. Chobani yogurt
    3. “Fun” magazine in checkout line
    4. 3 pack of Romaine
    5. Mama Mia’s WW low carb tortillas(by far the BEST-ever!!)

  11. 111
    Tracey Knight says:

    lindsee, you know here in arkansas it’s THE WALMARTS. but only when we’re making fun of ourselves (sort of). if i stop at the smaller store, it’s also the proper name – Brookshire’s. so – aren’t we fancy? πŸ™‚
    my list…
    1. almonds (blue diamond toasted coconut, y’all)
    2. tostitos multigrain chips
    3. bagged salad
    4. coffee
    5. and most definitely creamer
    & though it’s not on my regular list, on another post you did get me hooked on that mascara with the HUGE wand & i love it!

  12. 112
    Marie Sirk says:

    This is so fun ! ;0) I have friends in New Orleans and they DO say “making groceries”, although I don’t get it either…I say grocery store…I live in the Nashville area.

    My top 5 are….
    1. Natures Own Honey Wheat Bread
    2. Purity pink label low fat milk
    3. Fresh fruit
    4. Silk Very Vanilla Soy Milk (for my son)
    5. Milo’s Iced Tea

    Can you tell I’m a brand loyal girl ;0)

  13. 113
    Corrine says:

    When I go to the grocery STORE (or as my endearing uncle calls it, the ‘market’ – which is in no way, shape, or form a farmers market. Which makes it even cuter):
    1. Eggs
    2. Bacon
    3. Chicken
    4. Strawberries, peaches or blueberries
    5. Nail polish… 2 bottles almost every time. I could open a salon with all the colors I have

    Happy Shopping Ladies πŸ™‚ <3

  14. 114
    Amanda Cross says:

    We usually say the store. My grandpa and grandma said they were going to town. They live miles away from anything and you got all your business taken care of while you were out. I’ve heard some people here in Arkansas say they were going to Walmart’s. I just laugh to myself. Bless their heart. πŸ˜‰
    Our 5 item list usually consists of
    Baby wipes

  15. 115
    Natashajk says:

    My friends and I have talked about how we need drive-thru grocery stores where you can order five items or less for when we’re shopping with our kids. My five items are:

    1) green peppers
    2) milk
    3) cheese
    4) Coke
    5) bread

    Boring list, I know πŸ™‚

  16. 116
    Nina says:

    Love this post!

    I always just say ‘the store’ – that covers several places around here where one could purchase groceries. Unfortunately, sometimes I must travel to different locations to gather necessary items, but I digress….
    As a mother of 6 (4 are young and at home) I cannot seem to keep enough food in the house, therefore I go to the store quite often… so the top items are:
    Lunch meat
    Coffee and 1/2 & 1/2

    * Bonus: I used to live in Florida, and I miss shopping at Publix! There I would say ‘going to Publix’ πŸ™‚

  17. 117
    Rachel says:

    I have never heard it simply called “the grocery”. Interesting! I just say, “the store”. My all-the-time-five would be:

    1. milk
    2. fruit
    3. bread
    4. yogurt
    5. cheese

  18. 118
    Sherry says:

    Starbucks k-cups
    Chewys 4, Labrador & short hair pointer
    Cat treats
    Pop tarts 4 hubby, LOLING.
    My boring way of saying, I gotta go to store! Haha!

  19. 119
    Sue says:

    Definitely Grocery Store – altho I usually buy my groceries at Walmart
    1. Milk
    2. Orange Juice
    3. Diet Dr. Pepper
    4. Apples
    5. Salad

  20. 120
    Sasha says:

    No “grocery” just “the store” and now that I look at the word “store” that just seems like a strange word; you know when you say a word over and over you start thinking “that’s an odd letter combination for something that creates meaning for my brain”

    Das Five

    1. Coffee Creamer
    2. Gala Apples
    3. Kale
    4. Greek Yogurt
    5. Ice Breakers Mints

  21. 121
    Sara says:

    Current top 5 things from HEB (because shopping at another grocery store is just not the same experience):
    1. White nectarines
    2. Bananas
    3. Avocados
    4. Eggs
    5. Blue Bell ice cream (Have y’all tried the new Chocolate Peanut Butter?! YUM!)

  22. 122
    Pam Mayer says:

    I say “Target”
    1. 2 gallons skim milk
    2. organic strawberries
    3. bananas
    4. organic gala apples
    5. Ezekiel bread

  23. 123
    Ruth says:

    ABSOLUTELY GROCERY!!!! I had never even realized this was a problem until your blog. LOL
    (1) Bananas
    (2) Eggs
    (2) Bread
    (4) Milk
    (5) Yogurt

  24. 124
    Dori Fraser says:

    2.peanut butter
    5.Protein Special K

    EVERY morning I eat an apple.with.peanut.butter. Everyday.
    I also love mascara. But not that particular brand. So sad. Until then we were practically sisters. πŸ˜‰

  25. 125
    Missy Eury says:

    Grocery STORE!!!
    1) Diet Cheerwine (soft drink)
    2) Chocolate Lil Debbie Cakes
    3) Almond Snickers
    4) mixed nuts
    5) Potatoes

    OK Lindsee… Since I have your full attention…. The next time we have a give a way, you guys need to only draw from the ones who FOLLOW INSTRUCTIONS!!!! Just sayin’…

  26. 126
    Kelley Mann says:

    Haha, this is a great post. I for sure say “grocery store!”

    1. Bananas (anyone ever hear of a yonanas maker? It’s amazing!)
    2. Milk (recently switched to whole… Not sure if this decision is permanent haha)
    3. Salad
    4. Cereal
    5. Grapes (freeze the green ones, they are delish)

  27. 127
    Jocelyn says:

    My usual list:
    1) frozen juice
    2) milk
    3) veggies
    4) sliced cheese( there’s a BIG difference between cheese slices and sliced cheese)
    5) bacon or some sort of meat

  28. 128
    Con Schafman says:

    For sure I go to the grocery Store….growing up in Arkansas they even called it Krogerin’, but now living in the Northwest I say grocery store, but I always say I gotta go to Albertson’s (OR Costco)…cuz that’s where I always shop. And here’s what I always grab when I’m there:
    1) Turkey Deli Meat, thin for sandwiches
    2) Greek Yogurt Honey flavored
    3) Milk
    4) flour Tortillas
    5) Coffee Creamer

  29. 129
    Dionne says:

    I mix it up. “I’m going to the store”, “I’m going shopping”, “I’m going to the grocery.” It depends on “something” as to which phrase I use. What is the “something”? I don’t have a clue! Lol but, THIS I do know—I ALWAYS get more than I intended to! Why s that???!

    My top 5:

    1. Milk
    2. Orange juice
    3. Eggs
    4. Creamer
    5. Mountain Dew

  30. 130
    Tamara says:

    The grocery store top five list:

    2-Granny Smith Apple’s

  31. 131
    Tamara says:

    The grocery store top five list:

    2-Granny Smith Apples

  32. 132
    Angela says:

    I just say “I’m going to WalMart”. That one phrase covers it all!! Its usually for peanut butter, almond milk, cheese, bread, &some kind(s) of makeup/toiletry. BTW, if I had to go by one or the other it would be the grocery store.

  33. 133
    linda horn says:

    I usually just name the store since it can imply a variety and diversity of shopping items. ie Kroger or Walmart
    Grocery without the Store is primarily a British phrase.
    We southern girls would probably always add the “store”

    If you want to be really accurate “grocery store” is suppose to be a place where food items are sold. Given that most sell pharmaceuticals, oosmetics, household appliances and kitchen items , are they really markets?

    Now that everyone is confused as to what to call Kroger or HEB or Publix ..when i go to the grocery store
    BLUE BELL ICE CREAM is always on the list.

  34. 134
    Kristin says:

    It’s “the grocery.” πŸ™‚

    And I love how you called it (again) “the grocery” in one of the last paragraphs.
    “can’t be the only one that frequents THE GROCERY for certain items…”

  35. 135
    Janice Giddens says:

    The grocery store, of course. My other favorite thing to get besides mascara is lipstick. Right now, I am partial to mascara in vivid hues liked “sapphire” and “evergreen”. I also usually would get my flavored carbonated water from Wal-Mart,some kind of candy, and a magazine.

  36. 136

    Great post reminding me of all the differences between y’all over there and us this side of the ocean ( Ireland) – particularly what you guys eat!!
    I’m pretty sure ‘grocery’ comes from our part of the world and if we felt the need for further clarification we would add ‘shop’!! It’s like y’all saying ‘horseback riding’ – why the need to specify the part of the horse! Anyway my list includes
    1 skimmed milk
    2 porridge ( or as you call it – oatmeal)
    3 butternut squash
    4 shower gel
    5 loads of vegetables!!

    • 136.1
      Lindsee says:

      Ha ha! This is why this blog is so fun. Everyone is so different and that makes it wonderful! And by the way, the ‘horseback riding’ made me laugh out loud. So, if you don’t say that, how do you say it then?

  37. 137
    Mary in NH says:

    I name the store,like, I’m going to Market Basket. And we always run out of:
    1. Milk
    2. Deli meat
    3. Bananas or other fruit
    4. Bread
    5. (some missing ingredient for something, like last night, shredded cheese)

  38. 138
    LaDonna says:

    Definitely just say ‘Target’ and they get the picture. πŸ™‚
    1. Bread
    2. Gum
    3. Coke 12 pack
    4. Coffee
    5. Sugar free Russell Stovers candy

  39. 139
    Hilary says:

    Well. Around our house, it’s not the grocery, or grocery store, it’s “Grocering,” as in “I’m going grocering,” because when my oldest was a toddler, that’s what she called the grocery store – grocering – and it stuck.

    And I have to say, I bought that Loreal mascara on your recommendation, Lindsee, and it is the best mascara I’ve ever used. I’ve had a long issue with mascara – the only ones I could find that I liked were the $20 itty bitty tubes at the high-end makeup counters at the mall. And I hate going to the mall anymore and spending $20 a month on mascara! But that $7 Loreal stuff from the grocering? Perfect. πŸ˜€ Mascara is fun again!

  40. 140
    Michelle B. says:

    My pick is grocery STORE, because grocery is just what you buy at the grocery store. I wouldn’t say, “Hey, I’m going to the shoe!” No, I’m going to the shoe STORE! (Which definitely beats going to the grocery store!)
    1. Coffee
    2. Dog bones
    3. Fresh fruit
    4. Eggs
    5. Lunch meat (or is it deli meat? or sandwich meat? – perhaps another blog is in order?)

  41. 141
    Debbie R says:

    Definitely the grocery!

  42. 142
    Cathi says:

    My eternal question….
    “What does everyone need from the GROCERY?”
    Usual responses….
    Milk, fruit, arugula, eggs, cereal, and cheese….specifically parmigiano-reggiano πŸ˜‰
    One of my dearest friends from the east coast calls it the FOOD STORE… Makes me laugh every time and I don’t know why…they sell food, right?!?

  43. 143
    Michelle says:

    I say either grocery or store but not together πŸ™‚
    Top 5:
    Almond milk
    Cold cuts or some will say lunch meat

  44. 144
    Denise B says:

    I am a smoothie kinda girl so it’s smoothie ingredients every time I go to the grocery STORE:
    4.frozen blueberries
    5.frozen spinach

    • 144.1
      JoAnn Janik says:

      Been thinking about starting my day with a protein smoothie, but not a clue of how to make it. Please give me you favorite recipe !! Thanks so much.

  45. 145
    Monika Ritchie says:

    It is definitely THE GROCERY STORE:) LOL! My Five top things I have to pick up at THE GROCERY STORE are: Sugar Free Creamor (International Delight Or Coffee Mate whichever is on sale that week), eggs, bottled water, frozen pizza for kids and chicken nuggets or patties and frozen fries for kids!

  46. 146
    Kari Flom says:

    We call it Walmart in our area: “I’m going to Walmart does anyone need anything”
    Top Five:
    Skim Milk
    Light Soy milk
    Greek non fat Yogurt
    Spinach or Kale

  47. 147
    Barbara says:

    Bread, Blueberries(summer only), bananas, toilet paper, what ever meat is on sale — we use buggys to put our groceries in when we go to the market. πŸ˜‰

  48. 148
    Michelle Harvey says:

    Simply…I have to go to the “store”. (The fewer the words the better, life is so busy!)

    1. Milk
    2. Bread
    3. Eggs
    4. Yogurt
    5. Bottled Water

    Thank you for the smiles, Lindsee!!

  49. 149
    Kim says:

    I say “I’m going to the store” but I like grocery πŸ™‚

    1. Milk
    2. Fruit
    3. Bread
    4. Coffee
    5. Eggs

  50. 150
    jariza laubach says:

    Grocery store for sure.
    2. Bread
    3. Ham
    4. cheese
    5. Snacks

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