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Saving Money on Healthy Foods

-- 2012-03-02 5:00 am --

Many frugal grocery shoppers stress the use of coupons. This is a great way for many to save money; but it is necessary to understand what they are really buying.

A growing number of people are not satisfied with the waste all the packaging is contributing to the environment. More importantly, they are not happy feeding their families with the chemicals that abound in these cheaper products. It seems to come down to a choice of spending more money at the grocery store or feeding their families healthfully and helping the environment. Or does it?

While organic foods are often more expensive than their conventional counterparts; it is possible to save money and eat real foods as well. Here are a few ways to save at the grocery store and in the kitchen once those groceries are brought home:

1. Buy in Bulk.

Companies have used the buying wholesale principle for decades. This principle can be of value to the average family as well. If a family enjoys beef, they can purchase a side of grass-fed beef to be cut to their specifications and get a much lower price per pound than they would pay in the store. Warehouse clubs are good places to look for deals on bulk produce, frozen foods and meats. However, the unit price should always be considered, because purchasing more does not guarantee a better price.

2. Go to the Source.

When healthier food is considered, the best cost-saving measure is to buy directly. If a person wants organic produce, he can purchase it from the one that grows it. This eliminates the middle man, so much more can be obtained at a lower cost.

3. Use the Freezer.

Sometimes even grocery stores run extraordinary deals on healthier foods. This is the time to stock up and fill the freezer. If free-range chickens go on sale, buy several and put them in the freezer. Many things can be frozen including fruits, vegetables and milk.

4. Make Your Own.

Many basic food items can be made at home. For example, saving bones of beef cuts and chickens can yield delicious homemade broth for very minimal time investment and can be frozen for later use, completely eliminating the need for canned broth. Salad dressings and many condiments can be made quickly with simple ingredients most people already have on hand.

5. Buy Quality But Use Less.

Of course, there will always be those few items that taste better organic or with a name brand on the label. If a family eats pancakes often and goes through a few bottles of imitation maple syrup a month, they can simply save pancakes for a once or twice a month treat and top them with real maple syrup. The taste does not compare, and the cost difference would be minimal.

While clipping coupons can be great for the budget, there are many other ways to save money without sacrificing health. How does your family save money on whole foods?