Low in calories, high in fiber, rich in nutrients including antioxidants and polyphenols, fruits and vegetables are essential to a healthy life. Often consumers eliminate them from their grocery shopping because of tight budgets. But, fruits and vegetables don’t need to break the bank. Here are some quick tips for finding value at the grocery store and increasing their use in your cooking and diet’s:
Grocery stores regularly feature fruits and veggies in their sales. Get the kids involved. Let your kids scan the grocery circulars for sales. It doesn't matter what forms: fresh, frozen, canned, dried and 100% juice, they all contribute to a healthy diet and it can be a learning experience for your kids.
Buy produce in bulk when possible for the best grocery savings.
When you purchase fresh produce process it immediately yourself. Wash, chop package your produce similar to the packages your would normally purchase for much less.
Seasonal fresh fruits and vegetables are often less expensive than those from different climates. So, take advantage of seasonal produce in planning your meals! If you have a Farmers Market near you spend spend a few minutes there and compare their prices to you local grocery store.
From the fridge to the freezer: Freeze uneaten portions of fresh vegetables, by dicing, blanching and placing in small containers. Use later in Western omelets, chicken and broccoli stir-fries or good old-fashioned beef stew.
Prepare dinner meals (casseroles, pasta dishes and soups) by doubling the veggies and reducing the meat, as veggies are often less expensive. Make double the dish and freeze half for an ultra-convenient meal later! Add beans for extra low-cost protein.