Sometimes nutrition can be downright overwhelming — not to mention expensive. Here is a simple list of nourishing foods to prioritize while on a budget!
I might be what’s called a ‘Naturally Frugal’ person.
If there’s a sale section in a grocery store, I’m sure to scan it before I leave.
If I can make something from scratch for cheaper than I can find it at the grocery store— I’m in.
I’m always thinking about ways to cut down on the grocery bill
And while there are quite a few things I can get away with when it comes to choosing frugal options for my groceries, there are certain things I choose not to skimp on.
How do I know what to buy?
Just ask yourself:
Is this item healing, or harmful?
Just because I see a box of Cocoa Puffs in the sale section does not mean I’m going to buy it. (Well, I might… but not on a regular basis!)
I want everything I bring into our home to be fuel for our bodies; not something that causes more stress on our system.
Why should I pay for something that’s going to make me unwell, and cause health trouble later on?
What nutrients am I getting for my dollar?
Say I’m looking in the meat section, and I see a whole, pasture raised chicken for $15 dollars. I also look over and see 3 lbs of chicken breast for the same price.
I’m going to reach for the whole, pasture raise chicken, because I know I can make lots of nutritious bone broth! Not to mention the extra vitamins and minerals that come from chickens raised eating bugs and grass.
Is this something we enjoy?
I could buy lots of high quality, expensive beef liver and rest assured knowing its PACKED with vitamins and minerals. It’s also very nutrient dense for the price!
…but then we wouldn’t eat it… because we don’t enjoy it… and then we would have to throw it out.
Know yourself, and what you will and won’t eat, and only buy what you will eat!
Foods I prioritize on a budget
Maybe someday we will be able to afford to buy everything organic, sustainable, and local… but today is not that day.
Here are a few things we prioritize, even when we can’t do it all!
This is something my family has done for years, and it’s so worth it! Not only is the flavor and texture superior, but it’s far more nutritious than conventionally raised beef.
It’s best to look for organic, and 100% grass-fed. Even better, try to find a local farm where you can ask questions and really get to know what kind of quality you’re getting!
This is a newer development as I’ve learned the importance of traditionally raised poultry. Healthy chickens who happily munch on bugs and grass are the ones I want on my plate. I buy whole, pasture raised chickens, and I find I actually SAVE money.
I roast the chicken whole, and we eat it for a couple meals; then I simmer the remaining chicken bones all day and get some delicious, rich, gelatinous bone broth. Win-win!
The taste is also SO much better. Every time we have conventionally raised chicken, my husband notices and comments on the difference in flavor.
This one seems a lot harder to find in the grocery store, so if you can’t find whole pasture-raised chickens there, try looking for a local farmer who raises chickens! It’s always awesome to support a local farmer.
We go through a lot of butter in this house, so it’s important to have a quality source. Grass-fed butter has a much richer taste, and it’s also a good source of SO many nutrients, including various fat soluble vitamins such as vitamin K.
It’s important to have high quality animal fats in your diet, and grass-fed butter is my favorite.
It’s usually easy to find grass-fed butter in stores. Read labels and play around a bit to find the brand that has the best flavor and richest color!
This is something I had to search long and hard for, but I think I’ve finally found a good source of raw milk in our area.
Not only do my husband and I love drinking milk in general, but raw milk is a nutritional powerhouse. This makes it a worthy investment.
Raw milk is an incredible source of protein, healthy fat, calcium, enzymes, good bacteria, B vitamins, vitamin A, vitamin C, and much more!
I understand that raw milk is a controversial topic, but personally, my husband and I feel very comfortable drinking it.
It’s very important to find a quality, clean source for raw milk. If you can, go to the farm and ask lots of questions!
I go through a lot of flour! Some day I would like to own a grain mill, but until then, we buy organic flour.
Not only is it free of GMO’s and pesticides, but I’ve found it makes a noticeable difference in the texture of my baked goods.
Foods we prioritize when we can
Everyone’s food budget is going to look a little different from the next persons. Maybe some of the things on my list just aren’t option for you right now, and that’s okay!
Personally, I’ve found that by cooking from scratch, avoiding packaged foods, and eating all of our meals at home has kept our budget in a very reasonable place. I really believe most people would save a lot of money by implementing some of these changes!
Here are a few foods that we try to prioritize on a regular basis, when we can.
Organic Fruits and Veggies
Things on the dirty dozen list are especially important to buy organic. We do our best.. but have you seen the price of organic grapes and strawberries?!
Often times buying frozen organic fruits and veggies is a cheaper option than buying fresh — especially when it’s out of season.
There’s even an option at our grocery store to buy soy free, organic, AND pasture-raised eggs! Unfortunately, the price is so much more that currently I stick with regular pasture-raised eggs.
Collagen is such a great protein and source of amino-acids. It’s so easy to add in to smoothies or hot drinks, and I enjoy the richness it brings! High quality collagen can run a high price, so I’m always looking for sales.
Similar to raw milk, raw cheese is an awesome way to get in extra nutrients and especially vitamin K! A grocery store near us recently started carrying raw cheddar for a reasonable price, so we get it every once in a while for a delicious and easy snack.
Save it for later!
I hope you’ve been inspired to seek out better, more nutritious options to cook with for your family. It really is possible to choose nutritious options, even when you’re on a budget!
Let me know in the comments what are some of the foods you prioritize for your family!