I’ve been doing Paleo for awhile now. It’s become a part of us, who we are. We are also very frugal people. We like to save and hoard our money instead of shopping for things we really don’t need. In fact, I hate shopping. However, I love grocery shopping and planning our meals. I love making it strategic to see how I can save, but also to see how much I can woo my family with the taste of delicious Paleo food.
So many are people are hesitant to give Paleo a try because they think it’s going to cost a lot of money. Which, honestly, doesn’t make sense to me because, eating Paleo, you are eating REAL FOOD. You’re not buying the crap in between, in the aisles of the supermarket…you’re just buying food. So, once you take all that processed crap away, you are left with a lot of extra money. So, no more “meals in a bag”, no more blown up air…I mean bread, no more pasta, and no more gluten-laden snacks. Trust me, it looks like you are missing a lot, but you really aren’t.
Anyways, I’ve put together a little list of how I save money eating Paleo!
1) I buy the whole chickens. I cook it in my crockpot and then I use the bones to make stock. We usually just eat 1 whole chicken a week. This is for my family of 2 adults and 2 kids. Then I make stock. I either make a soup that week or I freeze it (flat in a gallon ziploc bag). Read my post, “Good Broth Resurrects the Dead”: https://thepaleomama.com/2012/02/18/good-broth-resurrects-the-dead/
2) I buy my beef in bulk. I buy 1/4th of a grassfed cow at a time. For 1/4th of a cow we get: 64lbs of ground meat, 8 rib eye, 9 TBone(some look like they may have NY strip attached), 3 Liver, 7 Sirloin, 4 roasts, and 7 cube steak. The cost was $4.50lb. This saves us a ton of money! https://thepaleomama.com/2012/02/15/my-first-cave-mama-kill/
3) I shop local and in season. I get lots of produce at the Farmer’s Market. I, also, keep the Publix and Kroger weekly ads and I plan my meals around what is on sale. I also use www.southernsavers.com to see what is on sale and if there are any online coupons I can print for things like coconut milk, cleaning supplies, toilet paper, paper towels, and some food items. I usually have 3-5 coupons for each weekly grocery trip. Nothing like I used to have when I was extreme couponing! However, we were eating crap food.
4) I pick my own produce. This is a great way to save money and also to spend some good time outdoors. A great website to find local farms that you can pick at is www.pickyourown.org.
5) I shop on Amazon A LOT! My UPS driver knows me now and he is, literally, at my door 3-5 times a week. When you buy through there Subscribe & Save option, you really save some good money.
6) I shop at Sam’s Club to get things like nuts, Lara Bars, frozen fruit for smoothies, almond milk, olive oil, and spices.
7) I don’t buy much organic. I save my money that I would spend on overpriced organic produce that has traveled halfway around the world and I buy local meat and produce instead.
8) I prepare things myself. I make my own mayo, salad dressings, and stocks. I also make our own Paleo treats, like popsicles, cookies (on occasion), pancakes, and muffins.
9) I grow things myself. Last year I had a full garden with lots of vegetables and spices. It really does save a ton of money!
10) I shop at the local Asian market for things like coconut milk, tapioca, some seed oils, sweet potato noodles, fish sauce, etc.
11) I save money in other areas of our life so that I have money to splurge on food. I make my own cleaners, laundry soap, and skin care soaps.
I hope these ideas help you get started and show you that eating healthy doesn’t have to be so complicated and expensive.