Shopping for organic food on a budget takes practice. We know from personal experience that switching to an organic lifestyle is not a cheap move.
It is possible to eat organic food on a budget. We are a normal family with an average food budget. We have always found ways of keeping organic living affordable and our tips may help with your own organic journey. If you want to know why we went organic read our blog why choose organic?
5 Tips for Organic on a Budget
1. Follow the Clean Fifteen/Dirty Dozen List
You may already know about the clean 15 foods (least sprayed with pesticides) and the dirty dozen foods (most contaminated)? We have this list printed on our fridge and although we do sometimes get clean 15 items organically to support organic farming, at the end of the month (or if things are tight) we always stick to non-organic clean 15 items.
Dirty Dozen: Apples, Celery, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Grapes, Nectarines, Peaches, Potatoes, Spinach, Strawberries, Blueberries and Sweet Bell Peppers.
Clean Fifteen: Onions, Avocado, Sweetcorn, Pineapple, Mango, Sweet Peas, Aubergine, Cauliflower, Asparagus, Kiwi, Cabbage, Watermelon, Grapefruit, Sweet Potatoes and Honeydew Melon.
2. Never waste a scrap
It really helps if you are someone who likes yesterdays dinner cold from the fridge for lunch! We never waste anything in our house. If we have left over mash potato, we have fried potato cakes the next morning. If we have left over curry, we make a curry pasty. You get the idea. Nothing goes in the bin. If we make far too much then we freeze it for another day.
Sprouting beans, seeds and legumes is a great way to produce fresh green organic goodness from relatively cheap organic whole foods. Sprouts get bigger and bigger until you can make a whole meal out of them if you want. If you haven’t tried sprouting and want to give it a go take a look at our sprouting guide here.
4. Go vegan/vegetarian or eat meat rarely
On the organic shopping list meat comes at the highest price.
5. Buy reduced food items and look for offers
We always visit reduced sections of our local supermarkets or farm shops before we start our shop – we often find food which is still within the date we are going to consume it which is a fraction of the price. It also helps with food wastage as sadly a lot of reduced food ends up in the skip. This trick doesn’t pay off with some items so you may need to meal plan as you shop – the last thing you want is salad that is wilted in the bag when you go to eat it.
6. Buy in bulk
We try to bulk buy to save cost and get better value for money in the long run.
If you have any tips of your own we would love to hear them!