Do any of your new year’s resolutions involve eating healthier and saving money? It can seem impossible to do both. But, if you’re serious about both of those resolutions, it’s possible. You can be thrifty and healthy! Here are a few tips to help you navigate the world of organic foods (which can be very expensive) on a budget.
1. Check out the frozen section.
You can get organic produce on sale–and should look for organic produce to be on sale seasonally. However, you can generally find better deals on organic fruit and vegetables in the frozen section than you can in the produce section. Then, on occasion, when frozen foods are on sale, you can get even better deals and stock up your freezer.
2. Look for local organic brands.
With the increasing demand for organic foods, local stores have started their own lines of organic foods and products. Kroger, HEB, Costco, Sprouts, Whole Foods, and Trader Joe’s all have their own organic brands, which tend to carry more reasonable price tags. So check your favorite store for it’s own line of organic foods to save money at the register.
3. Buy in bulk.
We buy all our organic oatmeal in the bulk section. Two of our local stores often have bulk discounts. So we tend to stock up on oatmeal during those times. You can also get great deals buying bulk organic foods from warehouse stores, like Costco. We now buy our organic rice, coconut oil, bread, among much more, at Costco.
4. Buy online.
Comparison shop is the key to determining whether you should buy something online. I used to buy our coconut oil online until Costco started carrying their own brand of organic coconut oil. I also used to buy organic black beans in the bulk section of our local grocery store until I found a great deal on bulk organic black beans online. I’ve shopped for organic foods and products at Vitacost, iHerb, Azure Standard, and Amazon.
How do you save money eating organic?
Every January we are all inundated by weight loss ads everywhere. “Get your best body now!” is an ad that popped up on one of my screens recently. They all pretty much say the same thing. But they act like you can’t do it unless you pay someone for work out training, packages of food, coaching, or some sort of fancy app. Now, I do think that most of those things can be very useful. But I don’t believe that you need to pay to get in shape!
About a year after having our youngest child, I realized that after trying so hard to lose all the baby weight that year, I was still carrying a few post-baby pounds around. So, I got more intense and in the process got into the best shape I’ve ever been in… without spending a single dollar. You can do it, too!
1. Have Fun.
Find some way to exercise that you enjoy. If you don’t enjoy it just a little bit, you won’t be doing it for long. I began running. I love working out outside. It’s much more refreshing to me than running on a treadmill at the neighborhood recreational center. Maybe you don’t like running. Walk. Take your iPod or phone and play music. Honestly, I am not sure if I could even run one mile if I don’t have my music playing! It makes the whole experience so much more enjoyable.
2. Eat fat!
Yes, I said, “fat.” Studies show that eating good fats, like what you find in coconut oil, eggs, avocado actually helps boost your metabolism. One of the habits I started when I was trying to lose that baby weight was putting a spoon of coconut oil (or grass fed butter, when I happen to have it on hand) into my coffee every morning. It’ll help boost your metabolism in the morning. Plus, it tastes great! Some experts recommend getting good fat like that three times a day to keep your metabolism working for you all day. Don’t deprive yourself of food. Just eat whole, nutritious food that will satisfy you rather than processed foods that will fill you with calories and leave you hungry and looking for a snack in an hour.
3. Eat lots of raw fruit and vegetables.
They are great for your body but a lot of fruit and veggies require more calories to burn than they have. So, you can eat and burn calories at the same time.
There’s no reason why you have to pay for a program or a person to help you get in shape. You can do it and enjoy it. Enjoying it is one of the best motivations to making it a habit and not another failed resolution.
What do you do to get in shape?
If you shop organic and know the prices of organic apples, molasses and spices, among other things that might be on your grocery list, then you know when you see a good deal on organic foods. And as you peruse this week’s Whole Foods organic foods sales and deals, you will see that there are some very good deals on this week’s list. Your holiday meal can be both tasty and healthy (or, at least healthier) if you use wholesome, organic ingredients. And you don’t have to break the bank to do it. This week’s list of organic deals at Whole Foods proves it! Check it out!
Organic Fuji Apples $1.49/lb
100% Organic Grass-Fed Organic Grass Fed Beef Brisket $8.99/lb
Natures Path Organic Oatmeal Pouches $3.50
Annie’s Homegrown Organic Frozen Pizza $6.99
Suja Elements $3.50
Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Molasses $4.49
Amy’s Organic Soups 2.50
Use one $.75/1 Amy’s Coupon
Final Price: $1.75
Imagine Organic Soup $3.00
Use one $1/1 Imagine Whole Foods Coupon
And use one $1/1 Imagine Coupon
Final Price: $1.00
Spectrum Organic Shortening $5.39
Use one $2/1 Spectrum Coupon
And use one $2/1 Spectrum Whole Foods Coupon
Final Price: $1.39
Imagine Organic Broth $2.99
Use one $1/1 Imagine Whole Foods Coupon
And use one $1/1 Imagine Coupon
Final Price: $.99
Kettle Organic Potato Chips $2.99
Use one $1/2 Kettle Chips Coupon
Final Price: $2.49
It’s sweet potato season, in case you hadn’t noticed. You can get sweet potatoes at amazing prices right now. We happen to have a bunch because we grew sweet potatoes in our garden this year. So, it has been fun coming up with various recipes to use the yummy veggie.
This weekend my husband asked for a sweet potato pie. We had made one for Thanksgiving. One that was full of butter and sugar, among other things. All that sugar was part of our Thanksgiving exceptions. This time, I didn’t want to make an exception. Instead, I thought I’d give the same recipe (from Paula Deen) a healthier makeover. I cut the amount of sugar used and replaced it with honey and I substituted coconut oil for the butter. I did the same thing for the pie crust. I don’t think I have ever made pie crust by substituting coconut oil for butter. But, since the pie was just for our family, I thought I’d give it a try. (It worked!) So, here’s what I did.
2 cups peeled, cooked sweet potatoes
3/4 cups honey or maple syrup
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup milk
9 -inch unbaked pie crust
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
For the filling, using an electric hand mixer, combine the potatoes, the honey or maple syrup, the coconut oil, eggs, vanilla, salt, and spices. Mix thoroughly. Add the milk and continue to mix. Pour the filling into the pie crust and bake for about an hour, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
The coconut oil won’t give you a flaky crust; it’s crunchier. But we like it! And while my ideal “healthy” pie would substitute some other kind of flour for the white flour, overall it’s a healthier yummy rendition of an old time favorite!
How do you make old time favorites a little healthier?
Sprouts sales on organic produce are of the very best, if not the best, deals you will find on those items they have on sale. I challenge you to compare the prices of the organic produce you would normally buy elsewhere with the sale prices at Sprouts. You will find that Sprouts prices are, at the very least, competitive. At best, they will be worth making that weekly trip to Sprouts.
◾Organic Grape Tomatoes $2.50 (1 pint)
◾Organic Honeycrisp Apples $2.50/lb
◾Organic Red, Green or Black Seedless Grapes $2.50/lb
Rosie Organic Whole Chicken $2.99/lb
Sprouts Organic Frozen Fruit $2.00
Alpine Valley Organic Bread $2.99
Tazo Organic Tea $1.00
Annie’s Organic Mac-N-Cheese $2.00
Spectrum Organic Refined Coconut Oil $4.99
Sprouts Organic Apple Sauce $2.99
Sprouts Organic Coffee B1G1 Free at $9.99
Organic Valley Milk $2.00 (32 oz)
Use one $.35/1 Real California Milk Coupon (if applicable)
Final Price = $1.65
Cascadian Farm Cereal, Granola or Granola Bars $2.50
Use one $1/1 Cascadian Farm Protein Granola
Final Price = $1.50
Stonyfield Organic Yogurt $2.50 (32 oz)
Use one $.50/1 Stonyfield Yogurt
Final Price = $2.00
R.W. Knudsen Organic Juice $2.99
Use one $1/1 R.W. Knudsen Sprouts Coupon
Final Price = $1.99
Back To Nature Products 25% Off
Use one $1/1 Back To Nature Sprouts Coupon
Garden Of Life Kind Organics 25% Off
Use one $3/1 Kind Organics Coupon
Final Price = varies
Acure Facial Care 25% Off
Use one $1.50/1 Acure Product Sprouts Coupon
In your back to school shopping frenzy, don’t forget that you can get great deals on healthier options for your children to eat when you send them back in their cute new school clothes and cool back packs. Sprouts is a great spot for healthier foods and organic foods at a fantastic price. And, if you are done with your school shopping or don’t have children who are going to school, you can still get these great deals
Organic Grape Tomatoes $2.50 (1 dry pint)
Organic Red or Green Grapes $1.98/lb
Organic Cantaloupes $.48/lb
Organic Pink Lady Apples $1.98/lb
Organic Strawberries $2.98 (6 oz)
Organic Bartlett Pears $1.50/lb
Organic Table Carrots $2.98 (5 lb bag)
DOUBLE AD WEDNESDAY DEALS
Organic Kale $.98/each
Organic Strawberries or Raspberries $2.98
Organic Leaf Lettuce $.98/each
Organic Red Mangoes $1.50
Organic Cantaloupe or Honeydew Melon $.88/lb
Organic Red or Green Grapes $2.50/lb
Frozen Frenzy: Save 20% Off All Frozen Items
$.75/1 Cascadian Farm Coupon
$1/2 EVOL Products Sprouts Coupon
$1/2 Sunshine Burgers Spouts Coupon
$1/2 Three Twins Organic Sprouts Coupon
$1/1 So Delicious Sprouts Coupon
Annie’s Back To School Savings: Save 40% Off Annie’s Select Varieties
$.75/1 Annie’s Homegrown Snacks Coupon
Gluten-Free Back To School Savings: Save 30% Off Select Gluten Free Items
There are some home medical investments that can lower your overall medical cost. Some of them are low price and some don’t cost a thing. Here are a few of my favorites.
If you have a family doctor or pediatrician keep these numbers on hand and in a high profile spot in your home. This also goes for poison control and emergency numbers. These numbers aren’t just vital for family safety. They save money. Poison control can let you know if a trip to the doctor is necessary or if there is something you can do at home. Calling the pediatrician can save you a trip to the office. Most doctors or nurse practitioners are willing to give advice and a time frame to know when you need to reconsider scheduling an appointment for your child.
Vital Sign Monitors
It’s important to have the older versions of these items because they are less expensive, aren’t digital, and don’t require batteries. At the very least have a stethoscope, thermometer, and blood pressure cuff. Keep these items with your first aid kit and know how to use them. They will save you trouble when it comes time to make those above mentioned phone calls. It also gives a sense of calm to know the actual facts of you or your child’s vitals when calling a health care professional.
Tylenol Free Medications
One of the highest risks of poison come from taking too much Tylenol. It seems to be in everything and when you’re sick it’s easy to accidentally overdose with. Get a lock box for you medications if you have young children and keep it high out of reach as an extra precaution. If you think someone has overdosed on Tylenol take them to the Emergency Room immediately. Tylenol poisoning show little or no symptoms, can last over five days, and can cause liver failure and fatality.
Baby wipes can be used as tissue. They are less expensive than regular tissue. They are also wet so they don’t tear up your nose. Last but not least they don’t break apart so they won’t iritate your nose further. Not to mention they can be used to clean anything, so it’s a good idea to have these on hand for more than just cleaning baby bums.
Of all the different types of cuisine, Mexican food has got to be my favorite. If we go out to eat, I tend to think about going to a Mexican food restaurant. And, although I cook a variety of types of food at home every day, I make tacos and fajitas quite a bit. And, one of the most fun (although not at all good for you) parts of a Mexican meal is chips and salsa, right? The combination is virtually irresistible, if you ask me!
Well, our garden produced a bunch of yummy tomatoes, cilantro and peppers. Check these out! (Cilantro not pictured below.)
What was I supposed to do with these…make salsa, of course!
So, I got to work. I used about 7-8 tomatoes and chopped them up.
Then, I chopped up about half of an onion.
I also chopped up the peppers but didn’t take a picture. (Sorry, I forgot to. And, I was getting very excited about the salsa.) Then, I crushed two cloves of garlic and chopped a handful of fresh cilantro.
Next, I dumped everything into my food processor, added the juice from one lemon, salt, pepper, about a teaspoon of cumin, half a teaspoon of chili powder and a dash of cayenne pepper.
I ran it through the food processor for about two to three minutes. Then, I poured it into a bowl and let it chill in the refrigerator for about half an hour. (That was only because it was almost dinner time. We had leftovers that sat overnight and that batch was even better.)
Who needs store bought salsa when you can have such fresh, tasty and even kinda healthy salsa. If you can manage to eat it without tortilla chips, it really would be healthy. Good luck with that, though!
What’s your favorite make-at-home indulgence?