Saving $$$

A gluten-free, lactose-intolerant diet is expensive for a couple of reasons.  First, we must include ingredients that aren’t used by the general population.  Foods that can sell en masse are cheaper because of the economies of scale.  Secondly, we can’t buy cheaper processed foods because they are far too high in calories and, for some of us, too packed full of additives.

A number of gluten-free bloggers discuss ways to save $$$.  Here are two whose tips I found helpful (although they sound similar, they only overlap a bit):

These bloggers provide excellent, general ideas, and I don’t have to repeat them.  Rather, I’d like to focus on ways to save $$$ by buying discounted fruits and vegetables.  I know, I know: over-the-hill produce doesn’t look appetizing, and the fruits and vegetables are bagged in bulk.  But, but: there are many possibilities for making tasty dishes while helping out your bank balance.  Here are some of my solutions when I couldn’t resist a bargain and ended up with large amounts of aging produce.

Bananas:

Berries: I feel I’ve hit the jackpot when I find berries on the discounted-food rack. If they’ve not reached the age of mold, you can make great low-cal cobblers and other berry desserts.

Cauliflower/Broccoli: Soups, bakes, and vegetable roasts.

Mushrooms: Recently, I bought five large packages of brown, sliced mushroom for a total of 16 cups and a savings of $7.00.  I made about a gallon of Just Mushroom Soup.  We ate it all the soup over a period of four days, but I could also have frozen some of it. Another recipe that uses up 2½ cups of mushrooms is Mushroom Bean Bake with Sage and Olive.

Eggplants and Plums: I found a package of eight eggplants, but when I opened it, what I thought were tiny eggplants turned out to be six wrinkled plums.  I guess the store was selling produce by colour that day!

I keep buying marked-down eggplants and now have two more recipes where they can be used:

Mangoes: Very soft (and going black) yellow mangoes are perfect for Coconut Mango Bread or Squares and Mango-Banana Quinoa Pudding.

Tomatoes: It is now the season for tomatoes, and I keep finding discounted bags of tomatoes at the market.  I make diced tomatoes by blanching them until their skins split and can be easily removed.  (If you’re not sure how to do this, check out a YouTube video on “skinning tomatoes.”  There’s lots of them.) Then I cut them up and use them whenever a dish calls for diced tomatoes:

Turnips: Getting-soft turnips can be used in Slimmed-Down Turnip Puff  which I make for dinner in place of potatoes.  

Root Vegetables: Turnip, rutabaga, kohlrabi, celery root, carrots, fennel, etc. Mix and match with a roasted vegetable medley. If you don’t want to use a dressing for diet reasons, then add ½ cup chicken broth and bake covered at 350° F for 30 minutes; uncover and bake for another 30 minutes. Done!

If you have any great ways to save $$$ on your fruits and vegetables, I’d love to hear from you!

8 thoughts on “Saving $$$

  1. Cauliflower are good too, because typically you can just trim off the browned end of the florets without too much loss.

    Apples and pears are easily chopped and cooked into sauces, compotes, or just plain cinnamon apples to add to hot cereal or eat plain. (Golden delicious & gala tend to hold their shape.)

  2. I just found your blog and love it! I also shop for veggies in the “going over the hill” cart! I know what time to be there for and I go on a mission. The savings is amazing.

      • Where do they get off 6 tomatoes for 99 cents? Btw Am I the only one who as noticed that supermarket flyers are now pricing produce by the pound instead of by the kilo. Welcome back to 1973.

      • Actually, our local Metro always prices a bag of “whatever” at 99 cents. And, yes, I hadn’t noticed the new pricing. I guess grocers are afraid we’ll be scared of the kilo vs. pound price. Thanks for visiting and commenting.

Did you find this helpful?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s