I adore organic food. I also adore saving money at the store. Two concepts that sometimes don't jive to well together. A lot of bloggers out here in the blogosphere talk endlessly about couponing when it comes to being a saavy shopper.
But as all you ladies and gents know, those of us who can't eat gluten, dairy, or grain and have to eat organic produce and grass fed meat, the weekly ads don't give us many coupons to use. Once in a blue moon we will get lucky and something we can actually eat will be on sale, but its not often. And so, we have to get creative.
This weeks Thrifty Thursday post is dedicated to getting the best value for your dollar when buying your organic fruits and veggies.
When I started my healthful food journey I ventured into my local health food store, trembling of course, without the vaguest idea of WHAT I was supposed to buy, armed with a list from my Dr. of all the foods I now couldn't eat. Basically aisles 2-39 in a store with 40 aisles. I would stock up my little cart with organic fruits and veggies off the small organic table int he center of the produce section, the friendly clerk would bag it up, hand me my two sacks and tell me "that'll be $49.95." What. The.
So I decided to shop smarter from there. Sometimes its unavoidable. But with produce we do have options... and to do so you have to adapt to the fact that fruits and veggies are SEASONAL. Who knew we weren't supposed to eat strawberries in the dead of winter.
When you eat organic you learn to appreciate deep flavors. You learn to plan recipes for what is ripe and growing that time of year. Its actually a beautiful process that gets easier over time. I promise. Although, I did stumble upon a secret that DOES allow me strawberries in the dead of winter, and in its on our list below. Without further adieu I give you some tips on saving on your organic fruits and veggies.
1.) Farmers Markets:
A fun way to get healthy fruits and veggies and meet your local farmers! Although, for me and Mr. Charming, the Farmers Markets are kind of out of the way for our busy schedules, so I will venture out to meet with my favorite farmer to get my beef bones, but don't go out to much to get fruits and veggies. If you're close to one though I suggest going this route, as its also a great way to support your local community, keep organic farming alive and speak your mind with your dollars!
A lot of places offer Co-Op boxes. Farmer's Markets usually have booths where you can sign up. My naturopaths office is a drop off location and you can probably ask your local health food store as well. It's a great way to get discounted organic produce delivered weekly or monthly in a box. I don't go this way because of dietary restrictions and a lot of the time you can't choose whats in the box. But for those of you that can eat most fruits and veggies, this is a great way to go. And again, it supports your community!
3.) Buy Frozen vs. Fresh
This has been one of the best things I've done to not only save money, but lengthen the life of my organic fruits and veggies. You can go one of two ways about this, buy your own organic produce and freeze it yourself, or purchase bagged certified organic produce, which is what I do. I found its generally a little less expensive than fresh and it lasts a lot longer. Its been proven that frozen fruit holds just as much of its nutritional content as fresh, and its MUCH easier for me to blend frozen kale and spinach into my smoothies in the AM, than having to wash and chop lettuce in the early hours before work.
This of course doesn't work for all produce, but like I said, with things like Spring and Summer berries, I keep frozen organic bags of berries on hand to throw into smoothies year round'. I also love to heat frozen berries in a small sauce pan and make berry compote to top my gluten-free pancakes or waffles. They are also good slightly thawed and crushed into coconut milk ice cream.
I hope you enjoyed this weeks Thrifty Thursday post! Share your tips on staying healthy without breaking the bank! If you have an idea for Thrifty Thursdays contact me!
Welcome! My name is Mandi & I hope you stay in this happy little space a while. I'm a Christian, a wife to my Mr. Charming, mama to baby Greyson, healthy food-lover, traveler, professional journalist and Personal Nutritionist who hopes to inspire others with my story...
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