Low Cost Bounty

  • 1 bunch of lacinato kale
  • 2 leeks
  • 8 turnips
  • 2 beets (my new obsession – for some reason i thought i didn’t like them. They’re so tasty!)
  • 3 lemons
  • 2 pounds of apples (for juicing)
  • 5 pounds of satsumas (these are like candy!)
  • 2 pounds brussel sprouts (roasted with lemon and evoo -yum)
  • 1/4 pound dried peaches (a delicious snack)
  • 2 pounds broccoli
  • 1 cluster of ginger

That’s a lot of food, right? For $25, Matt and I strolled out of the Farmer’s Market with stuffed bags and hungry bellies. Did I mention it’s all organic? One of my favorite community activities is going to the farmer’s market. I think it’s an amazing way to support local businesses and operations, and you really score awesome savings on produce. (And we saw Gwyneth Paltrow and her mom there this week!)

This food would have easily cost me double what it had if I had gotten it at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. Tonight I was in Trader Joes and their trimmed leeks were $2.89 for two of them. I paid $1.50 at the farmer’s market. TJ’s beets were $2.50 for two. I paid $2 for two. Their ginger was $1.89 for a tiny little cluster – we paid $1.

When I first started eating healthy, I used to complain that it cost way more money to eat healthy. Today I realize I’m wrong. It only costs more money in that when you buy healthy things, like fruit and vegetables, you eat more of it because it goes bad faster. In that regards, yes, healthy food can add up because you’re buying more of it. But when I think about how much better I feel after eating a clementine compared to a candy bar? So worth the tiny bump in price.

To save on things like lettuce that last a little bit longer, I buy the jumbo pack of romaine hearts from Costco. It’s $2.89 for six romaine hearts. I chop them up and spin and dry them and then I have tons of salad ready to go for the week. I buy some perishables at the 99c store, because often times, they’ve got overstocked organic mushrooms or bell peppers waiting for someone to take them home. Sure, they might be lopsided or have a little ding in them, but who cares? It all ends up in my belly anyways.

How do you save money when you’re eating healthy? Do you think it’s more expensive to eat healthy? Why or why not?


3 thoughts on “Low Cost Bounty

  1. People might disagree with me, but I think that healthier eating is actually cheaper most of the time. I think it’s because when you’re cooking with good ingredients (fruits, veggies, legumes, high quality dairy, meat, whole grains) the food is more filling and the flavor more satisfying. If I down a bowl of ramen, I’ll be starving an hour later. If I down a bowl of lentil dal (which is dirt cheap to make) I stay full because it’s filled with fiber and protein (not to mention that spices like curry are very satisfying for the tongue, as well as good for your general health.) I’m gonna get off my Santa Cruz soapbox now 🙂

    PS. Buying bulk grains and dried legumes is super cheap compared to when you pay for packaging. The incredible bulk! (like the incredible hulk, but more awesome).

  2. Believe it or not, my food bill has actually gone down since starting WW. I got into a routine and figured out how much of each fruit and vegetable I would need each week and I buy what I need- no more, no less. I typically save anywhere between $25-40 per shopping trip. No longer buying excess veggies that wont get eaten and no longer buying a copious amount of “snack” items like chips, crackers, etc.

    I think you’ll notice [or at least I hope it happens] that your bill eventually go down as you get into a routine. Good luck!

  3. I agree – eating healthy doesn’t have to be expensive. It can get that way if you’re loading up on organic grass-fed beef and other high-end meats (and don’t get me wrong, I splurge on those now and then!) but healthy foods like beans and grains and most veggies are so, so affordable. It’s just a matter of knowing what to do with them once you bring them home!

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