Plant-Strong Shopping on a Shoe String

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Along this plant-strong journey of mine, I have learned many great money-saving tips to keep me on the E2 path. Often time, people will ask me, “How do you afford to eat this way?” I am still not quite sure why there is such a myth about eating vegetables, and it being so expensive. There are no processed foods on Engine 2 Diet, and you are essentially buying fruits, vegetables, legumes, and grains. And, if you shop in bulk, prices are even more of a reduction.

Here are a few money-saving tips that will help you save money when you are planning and shopping for your plant-strong menu items.

-Make a Weekly Menu: This is the most useful tip. I have four, weekly menu plans, and I rotate them out every fourth week. Sometimes, it doesn’t always stay on track, but I have an idea of what I will be making and serving. This is a great way to save money at the checkout.

Create a Shopping List: I have a master list of grocery items that includes everything I generally use. It serves as a good tool to stay focused in the grocery store when I am often drawn to displays and beautiful endcaps.

Hit Websites of Favorite Products: You’ll find manufacturer’s coupons online. Print them out, and take the coupons with you. There aren’t many coupons that I use for shopping, but it is always good to see one for a plant-milk or fresh produce, for example.

Use In-Store Coupon Books: If you’re a shopper at Whole Foods Market, the Whole Deal® is always a great way to plot your grocery store trip. With sensible and thoughtful writing, the publication offers manufacturer’s coupons and private label coupons, as well.

Use a Shopping App: Query shopping apps that will help you save moolah as you shop. You will find them easy to use, and beneficial to your shopping patterns.

Shop for What You Need: I live in southeastern PA, and there are produce warehouses where I used to shop. Lots of produce, stuffed into plastic bags, and usually for one dollar a bag. The bad thing is that you did not get to select exact pieces, AND sometimes, you would get more than you needed. Not sure I can use ten zucchini in a week. In the end, it wasn’t cost-effective.

-The Best Time to Shop: I like shopping early in the morning, the store is easier to manage and you can cruise up and down the aisles. Fresh produce looks delicious and everything seems more accessible.

Shop in Bulk: Get all of your beans and grains in bulk. If you’re mindful of keeping your carbon footprint at an all time low, buying unpackaged foods is a great way to be a good steward, and save money. If you’re buying grains, double line the plastic bags, because if a grain cuts a bag, disaster will ensure. Bulk is my favorite, because I can get exactly what I need.

-Bring Your Own Bags: Not only do I take my own bags grocery shopping, I also pack my own groceries. One bag is for frozen fruit and veggies, one bag is for dry goods, and the other is for fresh produce. I do this because it makes it super easy to get the groceries into the house. If I am running late, or whatever, I always grab the frozen bag and the produce bag, and this way, I can unpack them, easily, and not worry about anything going bad in the car!

We eat really well in my home, and I am always proud of the plant-strong dishes that I create for me and my husband. We spend within the ballpark of $100-125 per week. We eat delicious meals that I make with recipes that are Engine 2 compliant, and part of that means having foods that are nutritious and flavorful!

Eating strong foods doesn’t have to break the bank.