Hello! This is Alyssa from Living Lean and In the Green and I’m going to be sharing with how to eat healthy on a budget.
As far as incorporating more organic and healthy produce into my life, I use the rule of the clean fifteen and dirty dozen, as shown on EWG’s pdf for clean 15 and dirty 12. Some of the things to buy organic include berries (of any kind), spinach, and apples for example (basically anything you would eat with its skin, probably should be organic). On the other hand the clean 15 list includes conventional non-organic produce that (if you’re on a budget) can safely be eaten because of low pesticide residue, such as: onions, avocados, watermelons, and grapefruit.
Another tip for eating more organic foods is to use club cards from your grocery store (such as Von’s, Safeway, Kroger, and Ralph’s), which helps when the organic products go on sale. Also, Winco Foods and Costco have increased their organic offerings (especially Costco), and even Walmart and Target are offering organic items at cheaper prices! Whole Foods has a flyer with sale items at pretty reasonable prices. Also, be sure to check out your local farmer’s markets when they are open and in season
Personally, I also shop at savings stores (the ones that get cast offs from bigger grocers). The one near me is called Grocery Outlet, but I know there are probably others like it under different names so be sure to check those stores for good quality organic and healthy produce items too!
Other tips I have for healthy eating on a budget include:
- Looking for a few recipes that use similar ingredients and buying enough of those items for all of the recipes (such as buying chicken breast on sale and using it for a salad recipe, a sandwich recipe, and a dinner recipe for that week). This tip also applies to your fruits and veggies, as spinach, avocado, and strawberries, for instance, can go in many different recipes and dishes including spinach, avocado, and strawberry salad!
- Making your own salad dressings using olive or avocado oil, vinegar (apple cider or balsamic), lemon juice, and seasonings of your choice (garlic or onion flakes, chili pepper flakes, herbs such as dried basil or thyme, etc.). Or if you want a creamy ranch style dressing use Greek yogurt mixed with a little onion and garlic flakes, sea salt & pepper, and dried parsley.
- When buying fresh herbs such as thyme, parsley, and rosemary if you are unable to use all of what you bought, put it on a paper towel on a plate in a sunny spot and dry them for later use.
- If you use a lot of a certain seasoning, consider buying it from a bulk source such as Frontier Co-op or Starwest Botanicals; or from an herb and vitamin store, where things like sea salt are $1.00 per pound instead of $5.00 a pound for a container at the store! And at an herb store you usually can buy by the ounce too if you like, to save money!