Organic Cheaper than Conventional

Wow I had a busy day…

I went to the regular grocery store and re-stocked some fresh produce.

Organic tofu was on sale for $1.50

3 pounds of organic gala apples were on sale for $2.99 making organic cheaper than conventional.   Gotta love in-store buys.

Then I went to Whole Foods where I only buy VegenasieWalk in, do not look left, right, or anywhere but to the Vegenaise case and walk right out.  Do not browse or get sucked in! They changed the packaging on Vegenaise, too.

I buy everything else at the regular grocery, TJ’s, occasionally farmer’s markets, or order online through iHerb.com Use code AVE630 to save $5 on your order.   Everything from nooch to stevia to protein powder is about 30-40% cheaper than retail prices.

But mayo wouldn’t ship so well, so I buy it at WF’s.  And I go through quite a bit of it because I am addicted to Vegan Slaw Dressing

I made a fresh batch of Vegan Slaw Dressing, poured it over a salad

And got to work on pressing my tofu for Mango Ginger Maple Tofu

After errand running, grocery shopping, a 3 mile run and 20 minute streamlined at-home workout, it was time to go to paid work. Whew.

From my last post about Flying Away and Happy Places, thanks for the nice comments about our upcoming trip!  Yes, it was a totally spontaneous decision and sometimes, that’s a wonderful thing to not overthink, overplan, overanalyze.  Rather, just do it! Which is what I did on that trip.

I loved hearing about your happy places and why they make you happy.  Such great comments!  I love reading those kinds of comments.

My mention of the amount of sleep I get every night (4 to 5 hours) drew quite a few comments.  Once upon a time, I used to be a “I have to get 8-9 hours or I am a mess” girl.  But life changed and I adapted by sleeping less.

Am I tired?  Yes, but not necessarily any more tired than I was on 8 or 9 hours.  The human body adapts and one day I will get back to sleeping more, but for now, yoga and working out, a plant-based diet, keeping busy, and having a good attitude about life all keep me naturally energized.

Dessert: Raw Vegan Brownies

Easy to make, easy to devour. They just happen to be vegan, GF, and fast to make.

1. Have you found any organic is cheaper than conventional deals lately?

Frequently, organic baby carrots, certain organic salad dressings, and organic salad mixes (at TJ’s), are cheaper than conventional.

Much of TJ’s food, too, is organic and by default, is cheap and just happens to be organic, too.

At the regular grocery, organic or “specialty” chips and crackers are frequently marked down or on sale with an in-store promotion so they are nearly as cheap or the same price as regular type crackers or chips.

If your grocery store has one of of those “walled off” organic sections (which I hate because I wish they would just put the organic food on the same shelves next to the regular food.   I mean, do I really want to go to the organic section to buy cinnamon if I am in the baking aisle?  No!  Put the organic cinnamon next to the regular for side by side comparison)…but if you go into the organic “section” and look for things that are marked down, you can often find some great deals.  Like $6.99 salad dressing marked down to $2.99 or pricey chips marked down to the same prices as mainstream brands.

All that said, I am not married to organic, at all. I buy whatever is cheapest.   May not be your path or choice, it’s mine.  I would rather buy 3 pounds of apples for the cheapest price, organic is great, not a requirement.

I’ve posted about my Grocery Saving Tips, including why I don’t always buy organic before.

2. Do you think that grocery stores should mix the organic food in with the regular food, or keep it in it’s own little “section”?

I am all for mixing in.  I would be more inclined to purchase organic anything from coffee to crackers to sugar if it’s right next to the conventional so that way I can price compare.

3. Weekend Plans?

I have something amazing that I’m doing on Saturday.  I will be sure to blog about it afterward!

Enjoy your day!

   

37 Responses to “Organic Cheaper than Conventional”

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    CathyK — April 8, 2011 at 3:39 am

    “The human body adapts and one day I will get back to sleeping more, but for now, yoga and working out, a plant-based diet, keeping busy, and having a good attitude about life all keep me naturally energized.”
    BINGO!! while sleep is important, if you don’t incorporate the healthy lifestyle choices you mention, 10-12 hours a night will not help! glad you have found what works for you…for now! and yup, another life cycle in the future may include more sleep, right!
    i wish organic + regular would be in the same spots in grocery stores. saves time to do one lap around the store, not two trips to different areas, then having to backtrack when one area does not have what you’re looking for. organic is rarely, rarely cheaper up here, unfortunately!
    have FUN on saturday! will look forward to the recap!

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    Sabina — April 8, 2011 at 3:45 am

    Hi Averie!

    I’m like you – I buy whatever’s cheapest!

    Sleep, I can’t function on 4-5 hours. My ideal is 7-8 and luckily, I can achieve that most days.

    weekend – it’s supposed to be the warmest all year and unseasonably so (+15C on saturday and +21C on sunday). unfortunately, that brings unstable weather (rain). the most beautiful sunrise is happening now.

    weekend – chill, gym, lots of time with hubby.

    xo

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    lindsay — April 8, 2011 at 3:49 am

    i always seek out the organic deals too! apples are the best score! Mixing would be no prob.
    Hope your weekend is restful friend.

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    chelsey @ clean eating chelsey — April 8, 2011 at 4:17 am

    I love it when organic is cheaper than conventional! I hope to never have to getonly 4 hours of sleep a night. I would cry.

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    Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope — April 8, 2011 at 4:33 am

    I’ve noticed more and more lately that the organic foods are mixed in. This actually seems like a positive advancement in the marketing of organics and I’m happy to see it! I do buy all organic produce and most other products organic just because it my personal choice, and it’s nice to go to Whole Foods or TJ’s and have a normal shopping trip, walking down all the aisles and not just “organic” aisles.

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    Hannah — April 8, 2011 at 5:22 am

    I really like the idea of mixing in organic with the regular, as long as everything is clearly labeled. I tend to buy mostly organic or local, especially with the produce that is on the top of the list of carrying pesticides and chemicals. However if something is totally too expensive I will buy conventional, knowing that most of my diet is composed of organic. As long as we treat our bodies well they are great at getting rid of things that don’t belong.

    It is so exciting when organic is cheaper than conventional! I always think in my head “take that” to all the people that go on and on about organic being expensive.

    Like you I buy a lot of staples online at luckyvitamin, which is very similar to iherb.

    Weekend plans include a 3-hour yoga workshop today (Friday is the weekend right), an orientation for being a volunteer at a local dog shelter, and a lecture from Brendan Brazier on Sunday afternoon!

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    Ilana — April 8, 2011 at 5:45 am

    Even though I’ve been reading your blog for quite a bit now, I’m still always amazed by how much you do in a day – I don’t stop from the time I wake up til the time my head hits the pillow at the end of the day but I have no clue how you pack it all in. AND I’m always tired (but that’s another story and me and the doctors are working it out … bleh … you make all the healthy choices and your body goes ahead and has wonky blood iron and throxin levels anyway, whateeeeveerrrr).

    Mostly I find conventional to be cheaper for me but there are places (yeah like TJs) where the organic is NOT too expensive – not that I love TJ’s produce but in a pinch their organic apples are cheaper than the conventional ones at my supermarket.

    Can’t wait to hear about your big exciting plans for the weekend!!! My plans are teaching and hanging out with friends. Low key as ever.

    Have a good weekend my love! XOXO

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    Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin — April 8, 2011 at 5:48 am

    I found a similar deal on organic apples at the grocery store this week! They were $2 cheaper for a bag than the conventional ones! Also organic cherry tomatoes have been cheaper lately too.

    At my grocery store the organic and conventional produce are mostly mixed together, which I like because it makes it easier to compare prices!

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    Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food — April 8, 2011 at 5:48 am

    Good morning!

    It is funny how they “wall off” the organic produce. I really think it’s to make it look higher class :P and maybe to make it easier to find. If I can get good organic produce at a good price at TJ’s than I will but I’m certainly not married to it either.

    That Maple tofu looks so lovely and caramelized! :)

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    Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food — April 8, 2011 at 5:50 am

    oh and re sleep I definitely think that all human bodies have unique needs in terms of sleep diet any many other things

    I think the only thing we all need to be careful of is whether our bodies are truly adapting to less sleep in a healthy way or weather we’re simply getting used to the way it feels to be sleep deprived!

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    Beth — April 8, 2011 at 6:15 am

    I got to work early today and all your food photos are making me think “is it lunch yet?”

    Often I find Organic Avocados, Bananas and Mangoes are either the same price or cheaper than conventional. About half the time, packaged Organic Baby Spinach is also the winner. In a couple of months we will be back to getting our produce from a local organic farmer.

    I wish the would mix it in. It would make it easier to compare price, and to find it in a different store.

    Weekend plans: baking and unbaking tonight for our employee dinner tomorrow. Getting the staff up to speed for opening the paintball field for the season.

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    Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit — April 8, 2011 at 6:18 am

    I have that problem… I walk into the health food store and I look left, right, sideways, up, down… and then I get SUCKED in. I ended up spending $80 last night on pointless crap at the health food store. Doh! Although I did get more quinoa flakes for those tasty bakes that I’m obsessed with! We don’t have many deals on organic produce here. It’s flat out way more expensive than the regular stuff. So much so, that I use the dirty dozen list. Whatever isn’t on that list I buy conventional to save money. I would love to eat 100% orgnanic, but I think I need to live in a place like San Diego before I do! :P

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    tamara — April 8, 2011 at 6:24 am

    Where I live, Kroger has a special organic section(like a mini-whole foods w/in it) while Publix has everything mixed in but clearly labeled for that aisle…so basically in the baking aisle, there’s a section marked, “greenwise” and it will have all your organic spices, flours, sugars, ect.

    What I like depends upon what I’m aiming for. If I want to do regular shopping and compare organic vs. non-organic then I definitely like the Publix set-up. However, if I want to run in and look for specific organic or foodie type foods, it’s much easier at Kroger…..

    Grandparents are visiting from KY so they’re coming over on Saturday night to see our new(to them…since we’ve owned it for almost 9 months…) house and meet our new(again to them…she’s almost 2) dog…..

    Should be good times! Plus I’m going do lots of house chores….this is the one weekend in months that we don’t have any “out of the house” plans and I”m stoked!

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    Pure2raw twins — April 8, 2011 at 6:28 am

    I vary when I buy organic and conventional, it can be hard to always be organic because of money,but I do my best!!

    I am excited this weekend I am going to visit my best friend, well actually help him move into a new place. But it will be a nice change from my normall weekend.

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    Holly @ The Runny Egg — April 8, 2011 at 6:56 am

    Our grocery store does separate the organic from regular foods — and to be honest it doesn’t really bug me — but I think I’m so used to our grocery store that I don’t even think about things there. I just know where things are, get in and get out. I haven’t been to WF in over a year — I spent way too much money there and I can get just as good stuff elsewhere.

    Weekend plans – Twins game tonight (the home opener game!), and tomorrow I’m taking a gun safety class!

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    Medifast Side Effects — April 8, 2011 at 7:08 am

    I am a 8 to 10 hour sleep girl, not sure why but I just need it. Don’t get me wrong I can function on less but very hard.
    And yes the organic should be in with the regular stuff, it is nice to price compare, and the convenience of not walking all over the store to find would be very nice.
    We have been having some issues with some of our retailers cheating us up here in the cold North, they are saying organic and actually isn’t, so now you really have to watch what and where you are buying, I think they should be charged or something, I guess we will have to wait and see.

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    Claire @ Live and Love to Eat — April 8, 2011 at 7:17 am

    It’s like Christmas to find good deals on produce – organic is a double whammy!

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    Katie (quick cook rice) — April 8, 2011 at 7:17 am

    I love that you have the willpower to enter Whole Paycheck and just buy Vegenaise. How in the world do you do that? I need lessons. Probably doesn’t help that I can walk to my local WP (WF) in 7 minutes.

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    Lauren — April 8, 2011 at 7:19 am

    Wow you found some GREAT deals on your groceries! That tofu is a steal! I’m actually all for the separate section because it my store that means all things natural/organic/health food have a few aisles on their own so I honestly hardly use the rest of the store. I just walk straight over to the section and it makes my shopping a lot easier (PLUS those aisles are usually empty so a lot less hectic! Haha! I get to shop in peace!)

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    Chelsea — April 8, 2011 at 7:46 am

    I personally like how I know exactly where the organic food is and the healthy food in my grocery store, but they set it aside which makes unhealthy people less willing to wander into that area. I think it would be great if they mixed it in giving unhealthy people the chance to recognize those options if they’re willing to try and change their lifestyle as well :) I mean it makes it more convenient for me, but as a whole for everyone I think it would be better to “integrate” haha.

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    Mary (What's Cookin' with Mary) — April 8, 2011 at 8:21 am

    1) I but whatever is cheaper, but if the less expensive one (mostly at TJ’s) looks tired or close to spoiling I will buy the more expensive produce … doesn’t matter if it’s organic or not.

    2) I def think store should mix the organic with the non. Why would I want to go to 2 different sections to compare. Maybe they seperate them bc that way you can’t do that easily…?

    3) Not sure yet… I think we’re gonna wing it!

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    Katie — April 8, 2011 at 8:30 am

    The Safeway here mixes things, and I love it. I never have to guess at what is cheaper. Or try to remember how much something was when I get to the organic section. I rarely buy those organic processed foods anyway. Too expensive.

    Apples and even berries have been cheaper organic lately. If I liked apples, that would be cool, but I’ll settle for lettuce and bell peppers. They have been about the same price. I’ll take it.

    I am almost ready to try the veganaise after seeing it on your blog 8 bajillion times. Keep posting it, and maybe the 8 bajillion and 1th time is the charm. Seeing how much you love it makes me reconsider my hatred of mayo. ;)

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    Erica — April 8, 2011 at 8:33 am

    ow! What a great find on the apples! I like having the organic and regular separated so they’re easier to find. WFs is a money sucker- glad you’re able to just run in for the 1 thing you need. I usually end up with 1 or 2 extras. Weekend plans= big launch day at the gym tomorrow ;), date night with the man & putting together baby furniture

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    Tessa — April 8, 2011 at 9:07 am

    Hey Averie!

    First off Let me say how I religiously keep up on your blog!! I love it. I think your a great inspiration and I adore your recipes!
    I had a quick question..Im getting my wisdom teeth out in a few days…and like you I need to stay away from conventional medicine to help with the pain….have you ever gone through a surgery and if so how have you dealt with the after math without all the drugs?!

    Thanks so much :)

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    Christine (The Raw Project) — April 8, 2011 at 9:49 am

    Sweet score on the tofu. Interesting about Vegenaise, I like it. I buy so much more at Whole Foods, but thingslike Tempeh, organic produce and vegan alternative products are much cheap than in regular grocery stores.

    I find I need less sleep now too with a higher raw diet and better workout schedule, guess I’m sleeping more efficiently.

    1. Not sure, usually TJ’s is cheaper than WF and occasionally I find a good deal on organic kale at Raley’s, but that’s rare. We have a new farmer’s market store that opened up here this week that’s supposed to be like TJ’s, can’t wait to check it out … and hope it’s less crowded since no one discovered it yet. :-)
    2. Yes and no, I hate that regular grocery stores isolate vegan alternative foods in a “health foods” section and some foods into an “ethnic” section and charge way more for it. But it can be nice to have the organic produce seperated from the non-organic stuff.
    3. Taking my grandma to lunch for her bday and hopefully gardening – that’s about it.

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    Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca) — April 8, 2011 at 10:24 am

    I can’t wait to hear what you are doing Saturday!!!!!! Maybe you are having a wine and cheese party with all the cheese that you won!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oooooooh, I want to know!!!

    Organic produce is SO expensive in my city, but I buy it anyway. I’d rather pay now than later with my health.

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    Amber K — April 8, 2011 at 10:30 am

    I have never seen a store with a special organic section, the organic stuff is always mixed in and I very much prefer it that way! But it’s always more expensive, so I guess that’s the downside. I do try and buy the dirty dozen organically, but sometimes the cost is just insane.

    I’m going to a Dave Ramsey show tomorrow, hopefully it will be fun. Although it’s over five hours long, so we’ll see if my attention span holds out!

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    Gillian — April 8, 2011 at 10:31 am

    Just catching up on your posts now and so happy to hear you’re going away! You deserve it hard workin mama! Send me some sunshine!!!

    I buy organic when possible and when I can afford it, otherwise I buy what’s fresh and in my price range!

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    Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table — April 8, 2011 at 11:57 am

    Whole Foods sucks me in every time. It’s a serious addiction. I make myself feel better by scrounging for every sample. :)

    When it comes to organic product, I just try to be sure to go organic with the dirty dozen: celery, peaches, strawberries, apples, carrots, nectarines, bell peppers, kale, cherries, pears, lettuce, and grapes.

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    Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day — April 8, 2011 at 11:58 am

    Wow..what great deals!

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    Jonna — April 8, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    Hi Averie,

    I’ve been following your blog and love your recipes and information! As a busy mom to 3 kids, I am always looking for healthy snack ideas, also for me too! I finally made your raw vegan brownies…oh my….just ate one and it was delicious. I changed it up slightly buy adding a few more dates and probably only did about 1/3 cup of agave. The 3T of vanilla is a must!!! Love that…The texture was great, more like fudge I think since I used less agave. I also topped it with chocolate sprinkles like you did for your fudge. Thanks so much for the idea.
    Jonna

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    Alexia @ Dimple Snatcher — April 8, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    Oh my gosh!! You had me at mango ginger tofu! I am obsessed with both mangoes + tofu! AHHHHHH!

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    Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine — April 8, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    I went to Trader Joe’s today and was instantly reminded of exactly why I should go there to do all my grocery shopping. It’s farther, but their organic produce is way better quality than my “regular” grocery store’s conventional stuff. I have no idea how they do it- I got tortillas, meatless meatballs, salad dressing, two pounds of clementines, hummus, Zevia and pizza dough for $15 bucks. Woo!!

    My grocery store here doesn’t have an organic aisle, but the one near my parents’ does and yes, it’s annoying. Especially since some stuff randomly is in other places throughout the store.

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    Bria @ West of Persia — April 8, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    That’s awesome news about your upcoming Aruba trip. I like your attitude about “well, it’s just money, I can always make more.” Way to go!

    Like you, I now buy what’s cheapest. Or if organic is just a bit more, I might spring for it. I used to get more caught up in organic or not, but now I don’t. Seriously, it’s important to stay on budget.

    Wow, reading this post reminds me that NYC grocery prices are much more aggressive than what I’ve seen.bought out West. Here, in-store coupons and drastic markdowns like the ones you’ve described are rare. Luckily, I know the least expensive grocery stores in my area and hit them up.

    I’m all for mixing organic merchandise with everything else. Makes shopping so much easier. In fact, they often do this by default out here, probably due to space issues.

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    mamasallergic — April 8, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    I so wish I was not allergic to the soy in your vegan slaw! I also wish i could eat all of the nuts you mention!!!

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    Katie M. — April 9, 2011 at 8:42 am

    I’m amazed at the prices of produce by you. Where I live in Wisconsin it’s CRAZY! especially for organic. I was in Madison, however and decided to hit up a Whole Foods and was amazed at the awesome prices that they had compared to our local stores. Our local stores don’t even keep up their organic produce sections. Typically the food is half spoiled and it isn’t priced. I end up having to get non-organic simply because of lack of options. So anyways for 20 minutes I was in grocery shopping heaven. :P

    Reply

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