As we entered the new year- many Canadians noticed food prices going up.
Even if you’ve missed the various articles and satirical cartoons on the topic, walking into a grocery store and seeing a $7.00 head of cauliflower is enough to have you running out of the store screaming!
Food prices can often be a challenge when it comes to eating healthy. After all, from a strictly economic perspective $2.00 for a large bag of chips gets you a lot more calories for your dollar than does a head of broccoli. But from a health perspective you achieve a lot more nutrition from your dollar spent on broccoli.
BUT- (and this is a BIG one) that is only if you USE THE BROCCOLI! If half the head of broccoli sits in your fridge week after week, eventually growing all kinds of things that- though they might be green- you probably don’t want to be eating…..well then thats not doing much good to your body or your wallet!
And it’s true, we waste a lot of food! (Jon Oliver on food waste: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i8xwLWb0lLY ) which can further increase the price of fresh fruits and vegetables. Now I don’t like to waste- as you can see from the picture above.
We got the gift of a pomegranate. Only problem? Neither my husband nor I enjoy pomegranate. So?? It was clear what I had to do…..smash the seeds to release juice and use it as a chicken marinade!
So- to ensure that you have the opportunity to continue to enjoy healthy fruits and vegetables.here are some of my tips to ensure you are enjoying the most (read: ALL) of the fresh produce you are bringing home and truly getting your money’s worth.
1.Know what you have at home!
Don’t shop blindly. If you already have lettuce, you don’t need to buy a second bunch. If you buy apples week after week and no one likes them, maybe it’s time to choose a different fruit. It’s important to take stock of what you already have to prevent double and triple buying of the same item.
2. Shop with a menu:
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again- this is for anyone who has ever bought a whole bunch of kale and then spent the week scratching your head wondering what to make. Having a menu, or even better recipes, can give you a better understanding of what to buy and how much you need.
3. Freeze leftovers for later use:
Have left over spinach? Freeze it! instead of buying frozen spinach in two weeks for a spinach quiche, or pureed vegetable soup, freeze your own right now. Same goes for berries and other fruit that have started to turn. If you love a fruit smoothie in the morning- simply slice up your strawberries (or leave other berries whole), apples, and other fruit and freeze on a cookie sheet before transferring to a bag.
4. Designate an area of the fridge for older produce:
I have two vegetable drawers at home. before I go shopping I move all of the old produce to one drawer and load the other with new stuff so that I know what I should be using up first
Before we move on to ways to save at the grocery store- start by making the most of what you have to enjoy healthy, delicious meals at home!