Yes, eating organic can be quite expensive, but we could say the same about eating non-organic food: some products can be very expensive, whether they are organic or not. Anyhow, as I struggle with this issue myself, I thought I’d give you a few pieces of advice not to spend your entire salary on groceries. So here are 7 tips that might be useful:
1)Mealplan – sounds boring right? Just try to be unbiased for a minute to jump right into it, and you’ll be surprise to realize that it is actually super useful! Mealplanning, which basically consists of planning what you’re going to eat during the week ahead, means you go grocery shopping with a shopping list with everything you’ll need. Brilliant, isn’t it? I know that sounds basic but how many of us tend to be lazy and not do this stupid – not so stupid – list? You’ll be saving money, avoiding waste, and knowing what you’ll have for dinner that day instead of moaning about nothing being in the fridge and end up eating take away in the sofa.
2)Cook at home – talking of take-aways: buying processed foods or ready-made/ready-to-eat meals is necessarily more expensive than buying raw and natural products. You’ll save money as well as control what will be on your plate. Plus, you’ll have the satisfaction to make something from scratch in the kitchen, and that’s something you can’t buy!
3)Buy seasonal fruits and veggies – for that one, I advise you to shop in an organic/local health food store, where you’ve got less of a chance to find out of season products which are logically more expensive, as they come from other countries. Another advice would be to buy them organic to be kind with your body: you’ll spend more on quality and you’ll get more nutrient-dense foods which your body will take up much more useful things to get going. And that’s not lame!
4)Buy in bulk – what’s the point in buying marketing and packaging? You’ll end up putting the plastic in the bin anyway and getting less off your money than buying the same exact thing in bulk. Oats, nuts, seeds, pasta, cereals, rice, even legumes. Yes, raw legumes that you’ll have to make the effort to cook, I know. But just think about what they put in most cans to maintain cooked food for longer… I’ll give it to you: endocrine disruptors (!) Who wants that really? And what’s the harm in boiling some water to cook your own chickpeas? I think the effort is painless and worth the time.
5)Cook big batches of soup – first, just cook big batches of everything, that’ll make your life easier, as you’ll have a fridge full of delicious homemade food for you anytime you’ll be hungry and with no time to cook. Second, just make soup! Soup is so cheap, even more when you make liters at once! You only need one vegetable cooked in hot water with a little bit of salt and pepper, mixed together. If you want to make it even tastier, just fry up an onion, some garlic and/or ginger in the pan before adding in the vegetable of your choice and the water, or simply add a mix of veggies you love. You’ll eat a bowl of comforting soup for less tant a quid!
6)Dips with legumes – dips is another cheap dish as it only requires legumes, which are especially cheap bought in bulk. Generally, you just need to blend them with some dressing and it turns out to be delicious, nutritious and filling.
7)Homemade crackers with cheap flours – you’ll need them to eat with your dips! Crackers are so expensive to buy ready-made and you’ll be surprised to see how cheap and easy it can be to make them at home: just mix some flour of your choice with water to have a dough consistency, to put it on a baking tray and let it cook for 20-ish minutes on 180 to 200 °C, that’s it!
These are pretty basic tips but we all have to start somewhere. I’ll be happy to hear your tips too!