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Old 12-28-2011, 05:46 AM   #21
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I either freeze in mason jars or make into soup (usually chick noodle or potato w/ chicken) with in the next couple days
I freeze in a bowl then put in my sealameal bags.

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Old 12-28-2011, 10:35 AM   #22
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Re: Organic grocery budget for family of 5

love all the great ideas
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Old 12-28-2011, 09:37 PM   #23
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Re: Organic grocery budget for family of 5

Farmers markets are my best friend. Always seasonal, and there are a lot of farmers that are reverting to more natural/organic practices anymore because when done right it can be cheaper and its the "in" thing right now. Also, online co-ops like Frontier are really cool for buying bulk, just go in on it w/ a couple of other mamas to meet whatever minimum they require (I saw moms picking up 25 lb bags of all natural stone ground whole wheat flour for less than $30 from some of these co-ops when I worked at a health food store). I also always stick with organics when it comes to the Dirty Dozen, no exceptions.
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:01 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by TPLmommy

Haha! Too funny. I started one earlier this year to share that same info with friends but couldn't keep up with it after I got pregnant again in July & was sick in bed for three months. I'm slowly working on getting it back up & running though. I'd be happy to email you my menu plans & grocery lists, & links to blogs I frequent for ideas, if you're interested. The menu plan & grocery list are both excel docs that I made. Easy peasy but might give you a few ideas.

PM your email if you want.
Ahh, sorry you were so sick, I understand! I love excel ;-) People laugh because I tend to use it for like almost everything! I'll PM you, thanks!
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:19 PM   #25
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Re: Organic grocery budget for family of 5

We are also a family of 5, although my oldest son eats more than my husband and I combined. We easily spend $700 per month, which is no eating out, all organic, no meat purchases (we have a freezer full of venison at all times). I am constantly trying to scale back, since that is more than 30% of our total income. But it's our priority. We have a very tiny house, almost no expenses, drive older vehicles. It's all about priorities. As far as food, though, I know what I should be doing to cut spending-more freezing and canning when things are on sale, dry beans instead of canned, etc. It helps me to choose one thing that is consistent, like snacks in our house, and focus on a healthier/cheaper option for that one thing first. For us it is homemade yogurt (so easy) and homemade popcorn instead of crackers or chips or whatever is a tempting snack. We are way up in Northern MN so our growing season is literally less than 3 months. Prices for veggies are brutal. But ultimately worth it. My goal is $600/month, since that would be a good start and still really difficult for us.
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Old 12-31-2011, 08:05 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by smimonym
We are also a family of 5, although my oldest son eats more than my husband and I combined. We easily spend $700 per month, which is no eating out, all organic, no meat purchases (we have a freezer full of venison at all times). I am constantly trying to scale back, since that is more than 30% of our total income. But it's our priority. We have a very tiny house, almost no expenses, drive older vehicles. It's all about priorities. As far as food, though, I know what I should be doing to cut spending-more freezing and canning when things are on sale, dry beans instead of canned, etc. It helps me to choose one thing that is consistent, like snacks in our house, and focus on a healthier/cheaper option for that one thing first. For us it is homemade yogurt (so easy) and homemade popcorn instead of crackers or chips or whatever is a tempting snack. We are way up in Northern MN so our growing season is literally less than 3 months. Prices for veggies are brutal. But ultimately worth it. My goal is $600/month, since that would be a good start and still really difficult for us.
Making your own granola bars and breads might help? I guess i would actually organize your grocery list and see how that $700 is spent and see how u can lower each category if at all
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Old 12-31-2011, 12:35 PM   #27
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Re: Organic grocery budget for family of 5

Currently our budget fluctuates a lot since I am still using some stockpiled goods. I plan on shooting for under $500 a month in 2012 though. We eat mostly organic but not all organic. Many organics are simply not available in our area. I've very jealous of all the azure standard orders! We eat organic where we can, I grow a LOT of our veggies, and we have our own chickens for eggs. We buy all raw milk so that takes a good chunk of the budget at $8 a gallon, but for the most part we eat all whole foods with minimal processing. I like to use raw nuts and raw honey too, but I use those sparingly since they are also expensive. I've noticed that I can usually get raw almonds and sunflower seeds pretty cheap though. I've found buying things like organic oatmeal and beans in bulk can really help the budget. I got organic steel cut oats for $1.19 a pound yesterday. I can't get regular quaker oatmeal that cheap, and this is way better quality. I use dried fruits some in the winter - such as dried apples in oatmeal, raisins in homemade rice pudding. I also try to freeze things when they are in season. For example in July the U-pick blueberry farm is $2 a pound - so we go and pick like 10 pounds to freeze and can for the winter. That is a huge savings over the organic berries at my costco which comes to about $3.33 a pound.

I try to keep meals simple and avoid recipes that call for fancy ingredients that I don't keep on hand. We make a lot of pasta, rice & bean dishes. I try to stretch meat as much as possible and make sure that our portion sizes are reasonable.
I bake a lot of our snacks and breakfasts - like muffins and pancakes. I usually do simple snacks - apples, berries, homemade yogurt with fruit & honey.
No matter how I try I find that my homemade granola costs a fortune though - so I just buy the organic on sale at whole foods. Easier in cheaper for me.

It saves a ton to grow as much of your own as you can. We currently have almost-organic collards, cabbages and broccoli from our fall/winter garden. There's still cilantro, parsley, tarragon and oregano growing as well. Those help add a little to my cooking while being free!
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Old 12-31-2011, 12:39 PM   #28
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Re: Organic grocery budget for family of 5

Also, I make my own organic whole wheat bread (with organic olive or butter and pink sea salt!). That saves a lot. I can easily make a loaf of organic bread for under $1, but here the organic bread in the store is $4.50 and UP to about $6.50 a loaf.....plus most of it isn't even that good!
I got my organic whole wheat flour from amazon on super sale and I use sourdough starter instead of yeast.
I'm also going to experiment with making water kefir as soon as my kit gets here!
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Old 12-31-2011, 02:53 PM   #29
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Re: Organic grocery budget for family of 5

These are all great tips! I'm going to look into canning and freezing more. I think DH and I need to buy a bigger freezer though!
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Old 12-31-2011, 04:49 PM   #30
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Re: Organic grocery budget for family of 5

even more great ideas! thank you!


Quote:
Originally Posted by TPLmommy View Post
Haha! Too funny. I started one earlier this year to share that same info with friends but couldn't keep up with it after I got pregnant again in July & was sick in bed for three months. I'm slowly working on getting it back up & running though. I'd be happy to email you my menu plans & grocery lists, & links to blogs I frequent for ideas, if you're interested. The menu plan & grocery list are both excel docs that I made. Easy peasy but might give you a few ideas.

PM your email if you want.
I'm impressed as well and would LOVE some menu plan help so I'll PM you as well if that's ok. I'm also in So Cal (West LA) so if you ever want to meet up and have a playdate holler! My 2.5 year old DD would love to meet new buddies. (also have a 1 y.o DS and a 13 y.o DD).

Thanks everyone! Placing my first Azure order this month!
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