Friday, February 19, 2010
Finding Real Food on a Budget
My family began the switch to real food about a year ago. When we were first starting out I didn't research many options and just bought food at Whole Foods and Kroger or the Farmer's Market. It was almost half way through the summer when I heard of produce auctions. My parents and I went and we came home with a ton of veggies for very little money. I haven't bought onions or peppers since August. I would much rather grow all our veggies but my garden didn't do very well and the produce auction was much much cheaper than our farmer's market.
I also bought many veggies from Amish roadside stands to help round out what I needed to can. The produce might not have been certified organic but I was happy to be supporting local families.
My next step was finding raw milk. We are blessed to have several sources and the milk is only $5 a gallon for grass fed organic raw milk. This was a huge savings over buying $8 a gallon organic milk at the store!!
After finding cheaper veggies and milk I started purchasing items in bulk. My biggest mistake was not shopping around. I just bought what I thought was the cheapest and ended up spending more!! I just found the best place to buy organic bulk flour, sucanat, and various other items that will save me at least $50!!
Meat was our final stop. I have found 100% grass fed beef at our small local organic store for only $3.89lb which is a 50% savings over what I had been buying. I also have a friend who is selling me whole pasture raised chickens for $2lb which is $1lb cheaper than my previous price.
My goal is to feed my family of seven real local food for under $600.00 a month. It is a struggle right now because of lack of produce in our garden but I think will be totally doable once the garden is producing and local fruits are available again.
Do you have any tips on eating real food on a budget?
For more frugal ideas check out Life as Mom