How To Eat Organic On A Budget (Over 75 Tips!)

The one tried and true worry I get about living an organic lifestyle is the cost. It’s likely the only immediate downside because everything else about living organically is pretty magical. Remember, non-organic food often contains cancer-causing hormones, immunity destroying anti-biotics and dangerous pesticides. Pesticides by nature are designed to kill, they are poison. So when given the choice, I don’t know why anyone could logically buy food with poison sprayed on it? Pesticides can cause neurological problems, cancer, infertility, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, allergies and asthma, wheezing, rashes and other skin problems, ADHD, birth defects and more. That’s why buying quality organic food and eating the most nutritious foods on the planet will save you BIG BUCKS down the road in medical costs, prescription drugs and doctor visits…like my friend Birke always says “We can either pay the farmer or we can pay the hospital” – It’s totally up to us.

Over 75 Tips On How to Eat Organic On A Budget… 

In hopes to mitigate the initial money pains of buying organic, I want to share the top organic money saving ideas that I’ve gathered from my friends and family members. And, let me tell you, I learned a lot myself while putting together this list and combining everyone’s tips into one cohesive guide. I can’t wait to put some of these new ideas into practice. Let the savings begin!

piggy-bank

FIND AND USE ORGANIC COUPONS 

  • Check the websites of your favorite companies for coupons and special promotions, almost all of them have some.
  • Join your favorite company’s social media pages for special coupons and deals. For example, if you join Nutiva’s facebook page, they will give you access to a $10 dollar off coupon. This is perfect for stocking up on chia seeds, coconut sugar, coconut oil, etc. (They also run huge discount specials every Tuesday.)
  • Check out various organic coupon sites. Some of my favorite examples include Mambo SproutsSaving NaturallyOrganic DealsOrganicfoodcouponsHealthesavers, Organic Deals and Steals for organic food/natural living coupons, and money savings ideas.
  • Simply Organic who makes spices, seasoning mixes and baking mixes always have coupons on their website here - sometimes more than a dollar off.
  • Whole Foods has coupons here every week for various products throughout the store.
  • Earth Fare has coupons here every week for various products throughout the store.
  • Most stores take each others coupons, so don’t be afraid to use them all in one shopping trip at your most convenient or favorite store.

AT HOME AND IN THE KITCHEN

  • Stay organized. Plan out your meals for the week according to organic foods that are on sale and/or that you have coupons for.
  • Budget. Write out a weekly and monthly budget to help you keep track of both erratic spending and responsible spending. This will allow you to see your spending habits and help you prioritize purchasing organic food within your budget.
  • Do it yourself, rather than buy it. Make your own organic granola bars, kale chips, smoothies, juices to replaced store-bought with more overhead.
  • Learn how to portion and prioritize – it is a necessity to always buy organic meats and dairy products, and, therefore, learn to portion your consumption of these products each week. For example, keep meat to 4 ounces or less per serving.
  • Invest in a 4 stage water filter installed directly under your sink to avoid having to buy bottled water. Also, check the Environmental Working Group guide on choosing the right water filter for you.
  • Check out the book “Wildly Affordable Organic” for organic menu planning on $5 a day or less.

USE YOUR FREEZER

  • 9 times out of 10 the organic frozen produce at the store is cheaper than fresh, especially if the fruit or vegetable is out of season.
  • Freeze all left overs using inexpensive mason glass jars or silicone ice molds for smaller portions.
  • Freeze homemade cookie dough and other treats like almond freezer fudge, so you can have a treat ready to go in the appropriate portion size.
  • Buy local produce when in season and freeze to save for out of season, for example in the spring and summer spread berries on a sheet pan and freeze overnight and then store in jars for the fall and winter.
  • Double recipes and freeze leftovers, this works great with soups and stews.
  • Freeze core kitchen staples like butter, cheese and bread scraps for bread crumbs or homemade croutons.

MAKE CHOICES

  • Meat & dairy (animals products like chicken, eggs, cheese, butter, yogurt, milk, etc.) are the most important to buy organic because of the combined risk of pesticide, anti-biotic and cancer causing growth hormone exposure. Whatever you do, do not skimp here.
  • Reduce meat and dairy consumption if you cannot afford organic – One way to do this is to be vegan before 6pm, as Mark Bittman explains in his latest book. For example, have a green smoothie for breakfast with ezekiel toast, and then a large salad with lentils at lunch or a wrap made with hummus and then at night choose high quality meat in small portions.
  • Reduce amount of organic meat used by substituting half the portion with organic beans.
  • Buy a whole organic chicken for less per pound, vs. just the breast, legs or wings which are more expensive per pound. You can use the carcass to make your own chicken broth.
  • Use the “Clean 15” and “Dirty Dozen” lists available on ewg.org to help you navigate which products to buy organic (or take with you when you travel). For example, if you have a choice between more expensive organic red peppers and less expensive conventional asparagus – choose the asparagus. Asparagus naturally repel pests allowing it to be grown with minimal pesticides. Include red pepper in your diet when it is in season or you can find it cheaper at another grocery store.
  • Do not buy pre-washed and ready to eat fruits and veggies, as they can cost twice as much.
  • Skip conventional Starbucks (and other coffee shops). Buy organic coffee and tea such as: Larry’s Beans Organic Coffee and Numi and make it yourself. This will actually save you time in the morning too.
  • Eat out only twice a week – eating organic at home is significantly less expensive than eating at organic restaurants.

BUY IN BULK

  • Take advantage of the ‘buy one get one free’ sales or buy one get the other for a discounted price. You never know when it will go on sale again, so make sure to take advantage of it and store for later use. (This trick only works if you really love the product and it is a staple at your home – otherwise this could lead to wasted food)
  • Always buy packaged staples on sale
  • Buy unpackaged foods from bulk dispensers – I personally save a ton of cash by doing this, I buy everything from oat groats, to nuts, to dried fruit and lentils.
  • Bring measuring cups with you to the grocery store if you are buying from bulk containers. That way you can get exactly the amount you need for a specific recipe and you won’t be paying for extra.
  • Buy smaller organic spice packets or jars, old spices loose their medicinal qualities so it is smarter to buy in smaller quantities. For example, Earth Fare has little pre-portioned tiny ziplocs with herbs and spices available at the fraction of costs compared to a whole jar.
  • Buy the whole animal and freeze the portions you don’t use. I personally know someone who is on a budget and does this all the time. You can also do this by contacting your local farmer and then splitting the cost with a group.
  • To satisfy a sweet tooth, skip the full size packages of candy and chocolate. Buy a few pieces in the bulk section, for example go for a few pieces of organic dried fruit or 10 chocolate covered almonds.
  • Find out what foods are in season and buy those in bulk, as they are significantly cheaper.
  • Join a buying club with your neighbors, friends or family and buy large quantities at a discount. For example, United Buying Clubs (unitedbuyingclubs.com) serves more than 3,000 clubs in 34 states through its website.

OrganicShoppingList

BUY ONLINE

  • Green PolkaDot Box - This service delivers organic and non-GMO food directly to your door step. It is membership club like Costco and Sam’s Club with some of the lowest prices available for organic staples, meat, dairy and other goods. (FYI – become a club member by Friday, May 25, 2012 to get 10% off the first order with the code “FOODBABE”).
  • Amazon – One of my favorite shopping sites, because they basically have every brand available and ship free over $25.00.
  • VitaCost – Another low cost website that has a wide variety of organic and healthy foods, vitamins, etc.
  • Herbs Pro – Another low cost website that has a wide variety of organic and healthy foods, vitamins, etc.
  • Before you check out online, visit Retail Me Not for online promotional codes and discounts for all your favorite online stores and sources.

CHOOSE ORGANIC BRANDS THAT SAVE YOU MONEY

  • Choose more inexpensive grocery store brand products like Trader Joe’s, Earth Fare, 365 brand, ShopRite, Wegman’s, Kroger, Publix, Harris Teeter. Regardless of the brand, they are all required to follow the same guidelines set forth by the USDA organic certification program if they contain the USDA organic seal and chances are that you won’t be able to tell the difference between a brand name and store brand.
  • Join grocery store loyalty programs for discounts. For example, if you join Earth Fare’s tomato bank program, you get a dollar back for every 100 points you earn.
  • Use your rewards cards always. Most convenient stores, grocery stores, and drug stores allow you to sign-up for a rewards or savings card that will help you save money on a few of your items at the checkout counter. Even if this time of purchase does not contain organic food, the extra money that you are saving on your items can be put towards buying it when need be.
  • Always remember that if you are not satisfied with your organic product, most grocery stores and organic food companies offer you money back guarantee. This also works for companies you bought in the past that you are now boycotting like Kraft’s Back to Nature
    :)
  • Check Ebay‘s section for food and beverages, prices are really cheap!

BUY LOCAL

  • Local food can be significantly cheaper than food shipped from miles away.
  • Find a farmers market near you through LocalHarvest.org or the USDA - get to know your local farmers, create a personal relationship and negotiate prices.
  • Ask your farmer about his farming practices. Some farmers do not spray pesticides on their crops but do not seek USDA certification to keep prices lower.
  • Be the last person to leave the farmer’s market. Farmers will likely cut their prices at the end of the day, so they do not have to take their produce back to the farm.
  • Buy a share in a community-supported agriculture CSA program. It’s nice to contribute to a local farm’s operating expenses while getting a weekly box of fresh fruits and vegetables.

GROW YOUR OWN FOOD

  • Plant an herb pot in your kitchen or somewhere convenient so you can always have fresh herbs on hand. Organic herbs are one of the most overpriced items at the grocery store.
  • Follow these tips from The Organic Consumers Association to grow organic food inside your home year round.
  • Check this amazing guide that details out all the options and information you need to start urban farming at your home regardless of how much space you have.
  • Once you start growing produce, give herbs, fruits and vegetables as gifts to family and friends (saving money on other material objects they might otherwise not use or collect).
  • Remember to buy non-GMO seeds, check out Sow True Seed for lots of options.
  • Check out growing lessons learned from 100 Days of Real Food.
  • Learn how to can the produce you grow, here’s a how-to-guide for strawberry jam.
  • Get a couple of chickens and hatch your own eggs. One friend of mine has so many eggs she doesn’t know what to do with them. You could also sell them to your neighbors or give them as hostess gifts.

TRAVEL WITH ORGANIC FOOD

  • On a road trip use EatWellGuide.org to find out where to buy local, organic and sustainable foods from point to the other.
  • Remember, a pricey restaurant doesn’t equal organic or quality food – going to a grocery store and picking up some organic food will save you money and your health.
  • Bring your food with you in a cooler – even if you are flying. Did you know you can check a cooler?
  • Bring organic tea with you and ask for hot water. A cup of tea can cost up to $5 dollars, vs. $1 dollar you would tip the barista or server.
  • Bring filtered water with you wherever you go in a reusable safe water bottle so you never have to buy expensive bottled water.
  • Always carry snacks like homemade trail mix in your purse or bag for emergencies.
  • At the movies, bring your own organic popcorn and snacks if they do not offer them. There is no reason to pay a premium for conventional food.

STOP WASTING FOOD

Quick fact: Americans waste an estimated 1,400 calories of food per person EVERY SINGLE DAY.

  • Raw nuts and flours should be kept in the refrigerator to last longer without going rancid.
  • Line your refrigerator’s crisper drawer with paper towels to absorb excess moisture. They’ll absorb excess moisture which will help keep produce longer.
  • To repel bugs, place a bay leaf in containers of rice, flour and pastas.
  • Buy and keep bananas separated from one another, they spoil slower.
  • Turn almond butter, yogurt, sour cream, tahini and cottage cheese containers upside down when stored in the fridge – this creates a vacuum seal, keeping them fresh longer
  • Do not throw away nut meal from homemade nut milk – use it for smoothies, baked goods like biscotti or to make nut flours by placing the pulp on a baking sheet and drying it out in a 250 degree oven or dehydrator.
  • Repurpose vegetable pulp from juicing to add fiber to soups, smoothies or make crackers or bread.
  • Placed limp celery, baby carrots and radishes in water with a slice of potato to make them crunchy again.
  • Keep all organic citrus fruits in the fridge – they will last up to 1-2 weeks longer.
  • Do not wash organic dark leafy greens or berries until they are ready to consume.
  • Store herbs, spring onions, asparagus upright in a large glass filled with an inch of water
  • Learn tips and recipes on how to use over the edge food. For examples, panzanella with stale bread, and banana bread with overripe bananas.
  • If you know you will not have a chance to eat it, freeze food before it goes bad.
  • Choose to eat less, use a smaller plate to help you control the amount of food you might eat or end up wasting.
  • Compost all food waste to put nutrients back in your garden (you will spend less on fertilizer).

If you know someone who’s struggling to buy organic because of cost, or that needs a little extra cash (like most of us!), please share this post with them.

Thanks for spreading the word – let’s make buying organic easier for everyone!

Food Babe

P.S. Got any more organic food budget tips? Please share them with me and others in the comments below.

 

 

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244 Responses to “How To Eat Organic On A Budget (Over 75 Tips!)”

  1. remediation remedies

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    Reply
    • Harold Hooper (to remediation remedies)

      What medication for toe fungus?

      Reply
      • Amanda (to Harold Hooper)

        Soak your nails in vinegar 2-3 times a day. You can google it for more info – I’ve forgotten the exact details. Tea tree oil is also a good anti-fungal ointment. You might consider adding probiotics and foods with anti-fungal properties to your diet.

      • jenn (to Harold Hooper)

        it’s spam

  2. Kim

    In a recent conversation about buying non-GMO & organic products with a friend, she stated that some of their farming relatives had gone through the process to become USDA certified organic. In going through the process the USDA required them to make certain changes and purchase new farming equipment. They NEVER double checked to see if this was done after they said they did it, which of course they did. But the question remains; if it takes one time to prove that a portion of their product is deemed organic then what is preventing the untruthful from lying about it and getting the status of organic for their packaging? My friend will only buy from people they know and trust. Organic is a farce to them. What is your opinion of this? Yes, they are from a farming family of I am not sure how many generations, but they know their stuff. Thank you.

    Reply
    • Quinn (to Kim)

      Good question, I would certainly like to know the answer as well…

      Reply
    • Birke Baehr (to Kim)

      I agree, I feel better going to the farm, getting to know the people and see what they actually do on their farm.

      Reply
    • Ryan (to Kim)

      Certification is an annual process so each year the operation is reviewed for continued compliance. There are also unannounced inspections throughout the course of the year for at least five percent of the certified operations. If the required change had been a higher compliance risk the certification agency would have followed up to verify that the change had been made sooner than the annual recertification date.

      Reply
  3. carol

    Where can i buy organic tea

    Reply
  4. pas wyszczuplający

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    Reply
    • Shawn (to pas wyszczuplający)

      I took a quick look at the source code of the site and she’s using wordpress. You can download a theme from any number of theme sites for cheap or most developers can build a custom site site for more. I’m a designer/developer so this question just jumped out at me. Hope that helps.

      Reply
  5. Goji Berry India

    Goji berries, are one of the most prized super fruits in the Asian tradition..
    Its very beneficial to every age.

    Reply
    • Samar (to Goji Berry India)

      I love your user name Goji Berry India!! Goji Berries originated from Tibet right? I love em!

      Reply
  6. Samar

    I like the article, but it really hits whenever heard of the argument how organic now will save money later on despite being more expensive now.

    1st, with the current gloomy economy and more tightness on money and budget people are on a tight current budget and resources are scarce. Sadly, many people are lacking jobs that earn money. So, with compassion and understanding as expected, I wonder why is it imposed on one to stretch the budget thinner while already tight and other expenses need to be taken care of or when one doesn’t have a job and the only option is to receive free nonorganic fruits or veggies at a place giving out free to survive? Pragmatically and realistically, one must at least have something to survive even if it’s nonorganic over organic. I have heard it is healthier to eat a non-organic apple than an organic pizza. Even Sanjay Singh, MD of CNN has said it is vital to stock up on plant based sources of fruits and veggies that are non-organic when organic is out of reach even though organic is ideal. Studies have shown how pesticides in fruits and veggies are much lower than in animal product foods and even organic animal product foods.

    2nd, Why on earth is it ever recommended to drink Organic Milk or Eat Organic or Grass-Fed Meat, Eggs, Fish or Beef? Clearly, just bc animal products are labeled organic they likely have come in still rotten conditions and toxins come from animal by-products. It has been researched and found that organic milk has more toxins than regular. Plus, why would anyone want to have animal flesh at all or their tummy as a graveyard period?

    Thanks!

    Reply
    • Farmer Erika (to Samar)

      Why would people want animal flesh?

      Because some peoples bodies function better with animal based fats. I’m much more attentive and energetic during the day when I eat a high fat, animal protein based breakfast (with fruits or vegetables, too. I had more veggies with my sausage today than many have for dinner) than when I eat a “healthy” breakfast of organic wheat bread and nut butters. My blood sugar ends up totally unstable and I end up in a daze. However, my mother thrives on bread and nut butter. My sister ate all they “healthy” vegan foods and nearly died. Turned out she needed an animal fat diet, our father being from Northern European farm stock it makes sense. Different people have different nutritional needs even within families.

      So yeah, I’ll keep my graveyard stomach.

      (ps. I raise very nice hogs, but they make it clear if I die they will eat me. So we have an agreement: I’ll feed you and keep you full, but I’ll eat you before you eat me. its nature!)

      Reply
      • John (to Farmer Erika)

        Thanks for the reply. I hear you. I have usually heard stories of people feeling much better from switching from animal based nutrition to vegan based bc of much less cholesterol and saturated fat in plant foods, but still to each is own. The only stories I ever hear of Vegans getting sick and feel like switching back to animal based food is because they’re not doing Vegan eating right or not eating balanced Vegan diet which can still be done. So interesting how with Vegans and even Vegetarians the belief is not to eat any dead bodies nor perpetuate the cycle of violence.

        Here is such a touching link I found:
        http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2003/09/21/1064082865083.html

      • Dan (to Farmer Erika)

        Your hogs must be related to mine. I thought you wrote a well written and non-inflammatory response.

        I had a family taking a tour of our farm and they were talking about the “cute piggies” which were 350 pound hogs. I explained that yes they were cute and they had had a wonderful life on our farm since being little piglets. Outside in the sun every day, never any commercial feed their whole lives only fresh produce and kitchen scraps, acres of woodland to roam in, and that the following week they’d be getting turned into bacon.

        “Aww, that’s so sad.”

        I then explained that these pigs had never had a bad day. They’d slept in a little piggie house lined with fresh straw out of the elements and been happy pigs every day of their lives. They’d also lived about twice as long as a commercial pig and they’d never have lived at all if we didn’t raise them for food because they aren’t pets. They were going to have one bad day in their lives and we should all be so lucky.

        They didn’t seem totally convinced.

        Then I told them the story of the farmer who’d gone out to feed his pigs and didn’t come back. After several hours the family went looking and found about 1/10th of him still in the pig pen. They don’t know what killed him but they do know that when he hit the ground he went from “food guy” to “guy who is food.”

        The family bought some bacon.

  7. Lori

    For me, it was quite simple: when I started eating organic, it meant I had to stop buying pre-packaged foods and junk foods, and I began to cook at home more often, which meant less eating out. Making these two changes save us a lot of money, so that money is simply redirected to buying quality, organic, whole foods. I don’t think people realize how much they spend on grocery junk foods and restaurants! In the end, I don’t feel I’m spending any more than before, except now I feel better and know I’m investing in my health.

    -Lori
    http://adventuresofasickchick.com

    Reply
    • Becky (to Lori)

      Lori – I appreciated your comment as that is exactly what happened for me and my husband.

      Reply
      • Lori (to Becky)

        Good to hear, Becky! :) My hope is that more and more people realize this. I think that being able to afford organic foods is more realistic than they think. It’s also far less expensive than doctor and hospital bills! (And I’m speaking from experience on that last one.)

    • John (to Lori)

      Thanks for the share. Even though I am all with you and all for a fully organic lifestyle and wish to always steer clear of GMOs, I had few lingering ?s below:

      1. What should one do if he/she doesn’t have a paying job and searching for a job or just has a part-time paying job?
      2. What to do when you are a guest in others’ homes or an attendee of a crucial business luncheon and can’t do anything about the cooking oil already used which is Canola, Corn or Soybean Oil or if they only have dirty dozen foods?
      3. What kind of daily herb or supplement can one take to fight off any GMOs that inevitably enter the body just like many top health professionals recommend to eat powerful fruits, veggies or other herbs to kill current cancer cells as it is a sad reality for people to completely avoid GMOs despite trying and with good intent?

      Thank you very much for your time and felt like getting your opinion as I trust you are understanding and can see where different people coming from. Even though I always hear the statement of less money in hospital bills later, many earn less because of their skillsets or from doing a job they love and majority of money realistically goes towards housing, utilities, gas, cell phone bills, retirement saving and any insurance which are top-most priorities. Thanks and look fwd to hearing from you.

      Reply
      • Danyelle (to John)

        Example better to purchase staples and make your own. I can buy nonorganic produce and an organic chicken for less than 20.00 with that I can roast the chicken and shred off the meat and save and use the carcass for soup! Add in veggies plus some of the meat and a little rice and for less than 20 you now have soup, chicken, veggies and u could do a loaf of Ezekiel bread and bananas plus a few apples and for 30 you feed yourself easily. Think outside the box plus repurpose. For dinner we had a pound of organic pasture raised pork mixed w a little fresh salsa, chopped yellow peppers, a poblano pepper, mushrooms, an onion plus chili powder and cumin plus two cups of rice and it fed 3 adults plus one child. You can add in beans or more veggies to make a meal. The veggies were not organic but the meat was. Pick and choose it can work npbut you have to be creative and not buy the boxed stuff too.

  8. Iksentrik

    To be clear, organic in no way means pesticide free.

    Reply
  9. Iris

    For me, belonging to a CSA is the best option for organic on a budget. I live in NYC and our farmers markets are extremely pricey! Having a huge box of fruits and veggies to deal with every week forces me to cook and eat it (or freeze things), as I would hate to see it go to waste. The only downsides are sometimes there is too much of a perishable item (like lettuce) so I will share with friends, and of course it’s only 6 months out of the year since you can’t grow much in winter!

    Reply
    • John (to Iris)

      I was just curious is conventional lettuce in any restaurant safe just like with the conventional in clean 15 list? Thanks!

      Reply
  10. Brenda

    You forgot to mention a great source of organic foods at budget prices, usually 1/3- 1/2 cheaper. Than at most health food stores, TJ Maxx & Marshalls. They have Late July chips, olive oils, spices, snacks, sodas etc

    Reply
  11. Birke Baehr

    Volunteer on an organic farm – sometimes they’ll say “thank you” with organic veggies!

    Reply
  12. chris

    Another thing that should be mentioned is that if you live in am area that has Amazon Fresh, they will often have organic products for even less than the regular Amazon site, especially for items from local merchants. For example in the LA area, lately I have seen grass fed organic lean ground beef for about $2 per pound.

    The even better thing is Amazon Fresh has just as good of customer service as Amazon. For example, I ordered flowers for my wife through Amazon Fresh for Valentine’s Day because they were less than half the price of ordering direct (and I already had a coupon for 50% off when ordering direct). The flowers that arrived were not what I ordered and we’re missing the vase that was supposed to come with them. Apparently 1800flowers had a lot of problems like this yesterday and those that ordered direct have not been able to get through to them to get the problems fixed. I went to the Amazon Fresh website, clicked on the please call me link entered my phone number. Less than 3 minutes later I was hanging up the phone after having been given a full refund and a $35 credit towards a future purchase.

    I mention this, as it demonstrates their level of customer service that I always get. So, even if they were slightly more expensive, I would use them, but they are even less expensive in many cases. Yes, it costs $299 for a year of the servoce, but you also get regular Amazon Prime included and it pays for its self in ease of taking care of problems and the lower prices, not to mention saving gas and time of going to the store.

    Reply
  13. KerriBlack

    Love Larry’s Beans Organic Fair Trade Coffee. I discovered them while on a trip to the Raleigh, NC area from NY. Loved it so much I have been ordering it online and often they send me a discount coupon by e-mail.

    Reply
  14. dontworryboutit

    When you say to not skimp on animal products you should research b4 stating such claims Are you nuts? It’s backed by science that not only does animal protein cause cancer do you know how many mg of pus is allowed in a glass of milk? It’s even worse for organic….

    Reply
  15. Laurie Moll

    I joined Nutiva’s FB page, and did not see any coupon offered to me.

    Reply
  16. Carrie K.

    Be careful with some of the products linked as they are owned by larger companies fighting the GMO labeling movement. Some of these are Naked Juice, Odwalla, Kashi, Bear Naked, Cascadian Farms, Muir Glen, Horizon Organic. You can get a full list and updates by downloading the Label GMO app.

    Reply
  17. Bridgette

    Another option for organic, non-GMO produce is to grow your own with a vertical aeroponic Tower Garden. Even a black thumb can grow produce free of pesticides. You can find more information on the Tower Garden at: http://www.bridgette.towergarden.com

    Reply
  18. Stacey

    Fresh Market has great deals on Tuesday s and Saturdays. Buy one pd of boneless chicken get one free and bogo ground Chuck. Their meat is fresh, grass fed and no antibiotics, local too. I go there every Tuesday ans stock up on my meats… check their website http://www.thefreshmarket.com/view-specials/tuesday-specials1
    For their weekly specials. Also, the Aldi by my house has organic fruits and veggies and tons of other organic products as well. These two places alone, have really helped us make the transition to organic on a one income family. Thanks for all you! Love your blog!

    Reply
  19. Kathleen

    You mentioned Whole Foods’ coupons as organic so wasn’t sure you were aware of this- also Trader Joe’s sold out.

    http://realitysandwich.com/80647/organic_elite_surrenders_monsanto/

    Reply
    • Meg (to Kathleen)

      I am extremely suspicious of this article. A lot of their “facts” make no sense. For example, for many crops there is no test that can determine if the food was grown from GMO seed after it has been harvested. Anyone that claims to have done this by testing the food is straight up lying.

      Reply
  20. Courtney

    Hi, we recently moved to a small Army base on an island in the south Pacific and we only have access to one small grocery store. There is never fresh organic produce, and a very limited selection of organic frozen. Same with meat, the only organic selection is the occasional bag of frozen organic chicken breasts. Organic milk is available occasionally, but never organic eggs or butter. I make our own yogurt and other various dairy products using the organic milk, but our selection is still limited. I do supplement our diets through mail order groceries such as coconut oil, nuts, dried fruits, chia seeds, oats, etc. It takes over 2 weeks to receive a shipment, so CSA-type produce boxes are out. What would you recommend for our family? We’ve been here for 9 months, and have a little over a year left before we return to the US and we’ve grown very bored of eating the same foods over and over again.

    Reply
  21. Dan

    You list Whole Foods 365 organic. Most of there frozen vegetables are from China which doesn’t do organic despite the USDA label. Orgsnic farmers in Mexico are destroying the land, and water supply. More important is the responsible sustainable farming , which may responsibly use pesticides that are easily removed safe. Dont mix blanket statements about organic and GMO. Farmers have selectively bred plants and animals for centuries, which is no different. Its the responsible use of science that is useful. Even While Foods contains about 50-70% gmo products at some level.

    Reply
  22. Jason

    Beware of “Farmers markets” Check with the one near you (if you have one) to see that it is really made up of local farmers and produce. I am a professional truck driver,and I can’t begin to count how many loads of produce I have picked up in California and delivered to “Farmers Markets” all across the country.Ever wondered where the out of season Tomatoes come from and why they taste funny? I pick those up in Nogales,Az .As a Product of Mexico,they are picked green (transportation distances) and are sent to ripening houses to be graded,ripened and sent to stores.

    Reply
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  24. Louise

    Do you have UK equivalent with stires etc recommended to buy food/organic

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  25. William

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  26. Lukas

    Also I believe that eating on a budget does not mean eating all the time at home :) First of all you can not stuch at home, moreower sometimes it is even cheaper to eat outside, just because while cooking you have also to take into consideration such a things like – electricity, water for dish washing and so on… So think from the other side :)) I even made a list of places where you can eat and save- kavinės enjoy! :)

    Reply
  27. Adrienne

    I saw you on Home & Family on the hallmark channel, and you were showing a recipe for Turkey Meatballs and Spaghetti Squash? I see no where in this website to get that recipe and print it.

    Reply
  28. jen

    CommonKindness is a great resource for organic coupons

    Reply
  29. Melodie

    Sprouts is also a good organic store to buy food from. I personally think being vegan is the best way to save money. You never have to worry about tainted meat. Even if the meat you buy is organic, the place they ship to kill the animal is same place they kill all food animals.

    Reply
    • Marty (to Melodie)

      You make it sound so inhumane to kill animals for food.

      Reply
  30. Alexx Stuart

    Hi Vani,

    I’m as passionate about you as all this and educating peeps in Australia. Just love what you’re doing over in the US and had to stop by and say hi. Have you tackled jello yet? Here’s my piece on that http://alexxstuart.com/fat-free-low-sugar-jelly-jello-the-most-toxic-thing-in-the-supermarket. Have an awesome weekend, Alexx xx

    Reply
  31. Herb

    This has to be the best health food list I have ever seen! I am trying a few things that I didn’t know. Knowing how to eat organic and what to avoid is so important now with all the toxins being sprayed on them.

    Reply
  32. Kaitlin

    Where do you find is the best place to buy organic meat that isn’t so expensive?

    Reply
    • Jessica (to Kaitlin)

      Costco sells a 3 pack of organic ground beef. Love it!

      Reply
  33. Jessica

    I would like to mention that discount stores such as Big Lots will randomly carry organic products at a very low price. I recently scored on canned organic tomatoes and a variety of Nature’s Path products such as oatmeal and granola bars. Don’t be afraid to dig around at the cheaper stores, you never know what you can find!

    Reply
  34. Marty Stevens

    Call me a pessimist, but I do not understand what all the fuss is about eating organic foods. I grew up on a farm in Canada where, if the crops were not sprayed with a pesticide, the bugs would eat more of the fruit or vegetables than the consumer. I had not washed a fruit or vegetable before eating until I met my wife, who washed everything, and yet I ate the fruit that had been sprayed with the pesticides. I am 68, in pretty good health, have good teeth (even though I’m English) and have never suffered any ill effects of eating foods sprayed with these poisons. It seems that ‘organics’ run around touting the goodness of organic foods (I’m not saying they’re not), but give it a break. I skip over the organic foods in favor of non organic foods, mainly because of the high prices charged by those grocers taking advantage of organics in their search of goodness. If you believe that you’re healthier than me by eating organic foods, have at it. I think it’s like chasing a dream and paying double for nothing.

    Reply
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  37. Adam

    For me, eating organic was a challenge at first. After you search places like Whole Foods, local organic stores. etc. etc. etc. you start to get a feel for what the most affordable place are to eat healthy and organic!

    Shopping online is a great way to save time and money in my opinion! Healthy snacks, food, lotion and everything else under the sun is available.

    Reply
  38. Melissa

    I live in Canada and some of the sites you listed isn’t available in Canada. Can you send me links for Canada or some suggestions of how to locate similar sites? Some like the Green Polka dot box, tips for buying organic etc.

    thank you

    Melissa

    Reply
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