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How to Carry Groceries on a Bike? – 4 Simple Methods

Written by Gary Johnson / Fact checked by Henry Speciale

how to carry groceries on a bike

Biking is a pleasant, easy way to get to any destination without the hassle of commuting or hauling out a large vehicle. However, one thing bikers always face when using their rides for everyday errands would be carrying groceries.

So, if you want to know how to carry groceries on a bike, here’s a few easy tips: be it attaching extra bike parts or using bags, or maybe attaching little carts. There’s a few ways on how to carry a heavy load of groceries home, safely.

Ways to Carry Groceries on Your Bike.


When choosing what to use, it’s important to note the terrain in your area and the distance and speed you need when knowing the best bicycle for grocery shopping.

However, you don’t really have to select or buy a specific bike for groceries whenever you go on a run. Instead, here are a few ways to carry your bags easily while riding your bike.

1. A basket


What do you need?

Here’s what you’ll need to attach a bike basket for groceries.

  • A basket or a crate
  • Leather straps or zip ties

How to use them?

It’s easy to attach a basket to your bike’s rear or front. It only takes a few steps to do so.

  1. Pull the straps or zipties through the rack or bike frame tightly from each side of the basket.
  2. Hold the basket against the frame or rack and wrap the open straps around them and the handlebars to secure the basket on both sides.

What’s the catch?

Bicycle baskets are helpful in grocery runs, as:

  • They’re easy to install and only require a few parts for DIY instances.
  • Baskets give your bike a rustic, cute look.
  • They provide ample space for your groceries and are ideal for light grocery runs.

However, bike baskets do pose a few disadvantages, including:

  • Bicycle grocery basket may lack a cover to protect your groceries.
  • There’s limited space inside a basket, which may only carry small, light items.
  • They might also throw off your balance while riding as they’re mainly attached to your handlebars.

2. Panniers


What do you need?

Panniers are a common bike accessory for bikers on the go. Here’s what you’ll need to attach bike panniers for groceries.

  • Panniers
  • Bike racks.

How to use them

Panniers are mainly ideal for bikes with racks attached to their rear. Here’s how to attach them:

  1. Check your rear rack and attach your bag hooks.
  2. Secure and attach the clip at the back of the bag onto the rack by rotating it.
  3. Run the strap through the bottom of the rear rack and up to the bag’s top and handle.
  4. Fold and secure all handles.

What’s the catch?

Panniers are ideal for carrying groceries on a bike, here’re why:

  • Panniers are easy to assemble and have a large storage capacity, which are great for bigger and heavier items.
  • They’re durable and strong as well, ideal for backpacking and protecting your groceries.

Despite their cool features, they also pose a lot of issues, including:

  • Being actually heavier than a normal backpacking bag.
  • They are also not compatible with most bikes, usually more suited to ones with racks.
  • Panniers may also not be ideal for traveling on certain terrains.

3. Bikepacking bags


What do you need?

The only item you’ll need to attach a bike bag for groceries is the bike bag itself! You’re all set to begin.

How to use them?

Here’s how to attach the bikepacking bag, or frame bag, to your bike:

  1. Identify the ideal position for your bag. It could be by your rear racks, handlebars, seat tube, or any secure part of your frame.
  2. Hold your bag into position and buckle it up with the straps attached to it.

What’s the catch?

Bikepacking bags are helpful and cool in a number of ways:

  • There are various types of bike packing bags to choose from.
  • Some are actually made to fit any part of your bike.
  • They are versatile and can be taken through any terrain with comfort and ease.

They do have a few disadvantages, like:

  • Once they get heavier, it slows the bike down and adds to the bike’s weight.
  • They can only store limited amounts of groceries and are quite costly.
  • Some of the bags can be compromised in different situations. They may cause instability during the ride, or they might not be as effective when storing groceries.

4. Trailers


What do you need?

Here’s what you’ll need to attach a bike trailer for groceries.

  • A chainstay mount frame
  • The trailer.

How to use them?

Now, there are a few ways to attach trailers to your bike, but here’s how to use a chainstay.

  1. Position the V-shaped end onto the chainstay’s frame.
  2. Secure the hitch’s large knob, rotating it clockwise.
  3. Attach the trailer to one hole at the end of the tube, while the other is attached onto the bike.
  4. Fasten the safety straps to secure the frames better.

What’s the catch?

Trailers are a perfect addition to your bike when doing grocery runs, mainly because:

  • Some bike trailers offer coverings for extra protection.
  • They’re spacious and can carry heavy loads.
  • They’re convenient and worth their price.

Then again, trailers do have their downsides. Including:

  • These bike grocery carriers make the bike longer and hard to control.
  • With the extra added weight, picking up speed or maintaining will be difficult
  • Trailers are mainly very bulky and might not fit in some narrow pathways.

What to Remember Before Your Grocery Run


Tip 1: Keep your ride smooth and steady! Moving fast might cause you to lose your balance and damage your groceries, especially when you carry food on your bike.

Tip 2: Maintaining and checking your bike before and after the grocery run is important. Remember to check your tires and brakes, especially in carrying heavy items on your bike.

Tip 3: When in doubt, use a backpack when going out to buy a few items. To avoid burdening your back too much, only use this method when you’re out to buy a few items.

Tip 4: Plan your trip and go to your nearest grocery store. Avoid inclines and steep slopes to carry your groceries easily.

Tip 5: Aside from baskets, you can also use crates. They’ve also been installed the same way as baskets and are perfect for attaching to your front or rear. They can store items effectively as well.

Frequently Asked Questions


Can I use a bike when hauling big bulks of groceries?

Yes, but it’s better to keep it to a minimum. Buying bulk items would be better for stores close to home or when you’ve installed proper grocery carriers for your bike.

Are bike racks necessary?

In some cases, it’s fine without a rack. However, bike racks are pretty multifunctional. You should consider installing a bike rack for groceries and other luggage when using your bike.

Is there any way I can combine any of the ways?

Yes! It’s completely okay to use any of these methods at the same time. Although, you have to remember your bike’s capacity and build before adding on any bike accessories for grocery shopping.


Sometimes, we can’t always drive around, and that’s alright–bikes are pretty handy in running errands, especially when buying groceries.

Whether you use baskets, crates, or bags, there’s not one best way to carry groceries. Always be where you’re comfortable with and the most accessible method you have.

Any of these methods are a game-changer and a pretty cool way to even spruce up your bike and give it more functions. In a way, that’s how to carry groceries on a bike without much hassle.

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