People are much more conscious of eating organic food now than ever before, but if you have to watch your money you may wonder how to eat organic food on a budget. I am very passionate about eating organic food, but I don’t have an unlimited grocery budget and have had to come up with tricks to keep within my budget while still eating the organic food I love. If you follow these tips on how to eat organic food on a budget, you will find that you can be pesticide free without breaking the bank.
1. Frozen Food is Your Friend
Did you know that you can buy a 10 ounce bag of frozen organic strawberries for the same price as fresh conventional strawberries? I was absolutely shocked when I discovered that I didn’t have to pay an arm and a leg for organic berries. I just had to buy them frozen. The same is true for other produce. Organic frozen spinach is a great deal as is organic frozen broccoli. Pretty much no matter what produce item you choose, you will save money by purchasing frozen. The amount of savings may vary depending on where you live, but I can tell you that Whole Foods’ 365 organic brand is consistently budget friendly. Buying organic frozen produce is a great way to deal with the question of how to eat organic food on a budget.
2. Buy in Bulk
Anytime you buy food in bulk you will save money. Many health food stores sell organic nuts, dried fruits, beans, grains, and flour in bulk for lower prices than prepackaged foods. Some stores even sell organic herbs and spices in bulk! I often take advantage of the discounts I can get when I buy organic food in bulk. Organic nuts are probably my favorite bulk food item. I just put them in the fridge or freezer when I come home and they last quite a while.
3. Clip Coupons
Coupons for organic food can be harder to come by, but occasionally I do find them in the newspaper. I also search the Internet for coupons. One of my favorite websites is mambosprouts.com. This website always has coupons for organic food, and I always check it before I go out shopping just in case there is a coupon for something I need. They don’t always have coupons I can use, but over the years I have saved a fair amount of money on organic food by clipping coupons.
4. Be Flexible
I have had to learn to be flexible when I shop in order to stay within my budget. If I planned to get apples, but pears are on sale for a much better price, I will buy the pears instead. I realize this doesn’t always work because sometimes you need a specific item for a recipe. However, if you are flexible when you can be, you can certainly make organic food more budget friendly. Being flexible with your fresh produce purchases is especially helpful for saving money.
5. Stock up
I try to keep my pantry very organized, but when items like organic canned pumpkin or organic vegetable broth goes on sale I buy a little more than I need for that week. I buy both of these items frequently, and I know I will use them. When my most used pantry items go on a sale I definitely save some money by buying extra. Of course, the bill of that week is a little more, but in the long run I really do save some money.
6. Shop Online
I am always amazed at how much less some of my favorite foods are online. Items like organic chia seeds, hemp seeds, cocoa, and protein powder can sometimes be 30 percent less online. When I first started buying these items online I thought the shipping costs would negate my savings, but they didn’t. Many online stores like iherb.com or vitacost.com offer free shipping when you spend a certain amount of money. Besides, I don’t mind if I have to buy an extra bag of organic cocoa powder to get the free shipping. There is never a doubt in my mind that it will get used.
7. Shop at Your Local Grocery Store
My tendency is to shop at health food stores for organic food, but I have noticed that my local store carries a decent amount of organic food at cheaper prices than my health food store. They may not have a very large supply, but the savings can be significant. Of course, this differs depending on where you live, but I can buy organic eggs for $2 less at my local store. This may not seem like a big savings, but when you are on a budget saving $2 is really great.
Hopefully, some of these tips will help you stay within your budget while eating organic food. However, if buying organic is still a stretch for you, you can stick to only buying the dirty dozen organic. The dirty dozen includes apples, celery, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, grapes, hot peppers, nectarines, peaches, potatoes, spinach, bell peppers, strawberries, kale, and summer squash. These foods have the most pesticides when purchased conventional. What tips do you have to save money on organic food?