Eating organic can be pricey. So I’ve rounded up my best money-saving tips to help you eat organic on a budget and make the most out of non-organic offerings.
Shop your local farmers market – You can score great deals on produce and you’ll get to sample. Yum! Check out the non certified section of the market, many farmers grow organic produce, but getting certifies costs lots of money.
Shop wisely at Whole Foods – I love Whole Foods, but I don’t like spending my whole check there. Learn my tips to shopping Whole Foods. Check out their bulk section to stock up on staples like brown rice, beans, lentils, and more!
Join a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) – Awhile back, Bargain Babe shared she was picking up her veggies, cheese, and eggs from a CSA. Though it’s not as cheap as shopping at the grocery store, there are benefits to joining a CSA .
Clean 15 vs. The Dirty Dozen – Familiarize yourself with produce that is rife with pesticides and those that are fairly clean. Shop only for organic produce from the dirty dozen list. I have the Environmental Working Group’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce app on my phone. Keep in mind that items like herbal tea and coffee tend to soak up pesticides as well, so buying organic is quite important.
Buy cheap protein – Organic tofu is way cheaper than organic chicken or beef — and it’s so versatile. I love marinating it as it absorbs flavors brilliantly.
Organic eggs are more expensive than non-organic eggs, but they’re still a bargain! Note that cartons labeled “vegetarian-fed,” “hormone-free,” and “free range” mean nothing. Chickens are not vegetarian — they eat worms and bugs. The USDA prohibits ALL chicken from being treated with hormones. The free range term is not regulated by the USDA.
Beans, lentils, and quinoa among others are also a good source of protein.
Organic milk – I splurge on organic milk when I can, but stick to hormone-free milk when money is tight. Many non-organic dairies make this milk at a more reasonable price. The difference between organic and no-organic milk is that organic milk come from cows that where feed an organic diet. The cows where also allowed to roam and forage on pasture. Want to reduce your cost of milk even more? Switch to drinking other types of milk like soymilk, almond milk, or hemp milk. These milks are less costly.
Grow a garden – Planting your own food will be less expensive, though it will take up time. Think small if you don’t have space. Being apart of a community garden has helped me save money! I grow tomatoes, herbs, strawberries, blueberries, and more. There are probably some things that will not grow in your climate, so you will have to either purchase these items at a local store or order them in yourself to save some money.
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