How can you afford to buy fresh produce? How can you afford to eat healthily? Do these questions sound familiar?
There is a common myth that it is more expensive to eat healthily than it costs to eat processed foods. Let me just tell you it is so not true! Let me share with you my budget tips to buy fresh produce.
There are plenty of easy ways to eat well and stay on a budget. I have 7 tips below on how to shop for fruits and veggies and really that is only scratching the surface.Throwing food away is like throwing money away - Who wants to do that?!Click To Tweet
Try to pick one or two that look easy for you to manage, do them for a while and then try to add another tip or two. Before you know it you’ll be a pro! 😉
How to buy fresh produce on a budget
- First thing I do is shop the discount produce rack. One caution with this option is you need to be prepared to use it within a day or two. They are often discounted because they have been on the shelf for a while. These are my tips for the discount rack:
- Dehydrate any fruits and veg into chips.
- Puree and make fruit leather (I often sneak some veg into my fruit leather).
- Puree and freeze. I often do this and then add veggie puree into my dinners. This works well for soups, casseroles, and sauces. Click here for a sneaky sauce recipe. You can also add pureed fruit to many dessert dishes.
2. Buy seasonal. This is most economical and the produce will be at its nutritional peak! See below for a quick seasonal guide to some common fruits and veggies.
3. Sometimes the 5 lb bag of pre-bagged oranges or apples is a better deal than buying 5 lbs. of single oranges. Bring a calculator to find the best price per pound.
4. If you have a recipe that you really want to make and it calls for produce that is out of season consider buying frozen or subbing for something similar that is in season.
5. Buy only what you can use before your next trip to the store or look at tip # 1 if you accidentally purchased more than you needed.
6. Shop around. You don’t have to buy your produce at a grocery store. Especially during the summer there are usually tons of fruit stands around, families who sell corn or other produce from their garden in neighborhoods, farmers markets, even a co-op if you have any in your area.
7. The best way, that I have found, not to waste money on produce is to make it “ready-to-eat”
- wash & cut several days worth of snack veggies at a time instead so you grab and go when you need to.
- pack serving size portions into bags or containers.
- pre-chop your veg for the next few dinners as well so you don’t have to get everything out each night. For example, if you know that 2 dinners this week call for diced onion. Dice enough for both meals at the same time. Then when day two comes along your onion is already diced.
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