Go Organic! How to Eat Organically on a Budget

Go Organic! How to Eat Organically on a Budget

With all the information out there now, it’s no surprise that Organic and non GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) food are better for us, but what is really stopping so many people from eating the better foods? Usually it tends to be price. For example, if you see some organic apples with a price tag of $2.99 a pound and they are sitting next to some identical (but non organic) apples for $1.99 a pound, which are you likely to go for? Hopefully after reading up on the benefits of eating organic and reading the dangers of non organic foods, will change your mind and make you reach for that organic apple every time.

For fruits and veggies I try to follow the “Dirty Dozen”  which means that I stay away from all the most contaminated produce and only buy those when I can find organic ones. There are so many more options popping up in a variety of stores by the day now, it really is making it much easier to eat healthy.

Here are some other tips that I have found make it much easier to eat organically and on a budget! It can be done!

– Only buy what you need for the week or less, depending on how often you can get to the store. I have learned not to over buy now as I hate wasting food. We now buy just what we know we will be able to eat before the food goes bad. (but with a pig in the house, we rarely have any food to waste anyway!)

– Take a walk through the bakery area and see what catches your eye. Some delicious lemon bars recently caught mine in Whole Foods but at $4 a slice, no thanks. Instead I bought organic flour, organic lemons, organic blue agave syrup, etc and made an entire batch of them for less than the cost of one slice! And homemade are always yummier too :) I love baking and I love knowing exactly what is going into all my baked goods.

– If you shop at Whole Foods, pick up their free publications when you walk into the store. “The Whole Deal” is full of great recipes and valuable coupons to use. I also found a “Better Yummies for Little Tummies” pamphlet there that has lots of great tips and menu ideas for kids.

– Most major grocery store chains are now featuring a healthy eating aisle and many have their own lines of organic items. Jewel Osco/Alberson’s has the Organic Harvest line, Dominicks/Vons/ Safeway has O Organics, Meijer has their own Meijer Organics, Whole Foods has the Organic 365 line and Target has some organic items in their Simply Balanced line. I have found the pricing on these organic lines are very reasonable and in my opinion, fully worth buying.

– Whole Foods has a bulk discount – any items can be bought in a “case” which will get you an automatic 10% off. To find out how many are in a case, look at the barcode on the shelf sticker. There should be a /6 or /12, etc at the end. Just ask any of the associates if you have trouble finding the case amount. They also stack discounts, so if Veggie Puffs (regularly $2.99) are on sale for $1 each and you buy 12 (a case amount) then you end up getting the Veggie Puffs for 0.90 each!! I know this as I have recently gotten this amazing sale. And Veggie Puffs are delicious by the way!

– Trader Joes, Walmart and Target also have some organic items and I’ve been noticing that they are getting more and more  in.

– Costco is GREAT for shopping for organics. They also are getting more organic stuff each time I visit – it’s fabulous! Some of my favorite ORGANIC things to get there are : frozen broccoli, frozen raspberries, carrots, spinach, bananas, agave syrup, ground flax meal, yogurt, cheese strings, cheese slices, eggs, crackers, fruit pouches (toddlers), quinoa, guacamole and hummus. They have changed things recently as they have so much more organic stuff than they used to, and now they have a green sign for all organic items whereas the regular stuff has a white sign. It makes it super easy to spot the organics if that’s what you are looking for (which I am when I am there!).

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for example, here is a picture of one of the shelves at Costco showing both a green “organic” label and a regular white label.

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all those aisle displays were organic! I was in heaven!

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– Both Costco and Trader Joes has the best price I’ve seen for organic chicken. It’s all I will buy now, organic meat or nothing. Not only is it healthier but I make sure it comes from a company that practices humane treatment of their animals. That is HUGE.

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Here is the chicken from Trader Joes, I had already opened it and taken the legs out before remembering to grab a photo!

– Most stores now sell organic eggs and they are not much more than the others. Please buy organic/cage free eggs. The treatment of chickens in non cage-free settings is atrocious. Chickens may just be chickens, but they feel pain and all that too. They can be affectionate in their own ways and they have their own little unique personalities. Since we have had pet chickens the last year, I have learned a lot, and I can’t imagine the horrors that people put chickens through, disgusting. I will never support any of those companies again. We have been fortunate in that I think I’ve had to buy eggs once or twice in the last year. Our chickens keep us regularly supplies with big fresh eggs on a daily basis. We even have enough to give to some of our other animals. Our pig, coati, raccoon and hedgehogs all love scrambled eggs :)

– Another great place to stock up on organic produce is local Farmer’s Markets. They should start popping up around here in the next coupe months so I’m looking forward to that.

Basically, it is much much easier to get ahold of good organic food at an affordable price now than it used to be. Hopefully it will continue this way as more people choose these options :)

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