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Brigette’s Bulk Foods Grocery Shopping Trip

We’ve been traveling the past few weeks, visiting family and friends, so I haven’t done any weekly grocery shopping. I DID, however, visit a couple of my favorite places while we were back in Michigan (where we used to live).

We discovered the Amish bulk foods store by accident one day, years ago, when driving around. It is not advertised and doesn’t have a phone number or website! It is the cheapest place I have ever found wheat kernels (no tax or shipping!), and I have been a loyal, happy customer for many years.

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I divide the 50-lb bags into ziptop bags and store them in the freezer

Countryside Bakery and Bulk Foods

(2204 29 Mile Rd, Homer, MI 49245)

1 50-lb bag Prairie Gold Hard White Spring Wheat Kernels – $27.95

1 50-lb bag Oats – marked down to $16.95

1 3-lb bag Cocoa Powder – $14.95

(16 oz Cinnamon – $2.49) My sister-in-law actually bought this for me and gave it to me ahead of time – but I am including it in the picture because it came from this store and I was planning on purchasing it.

4 oz. Ground Ginger- $1.99

Total: $61.84

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J and D’s Honeybees

(13521 Allman Road, Concord, MI 49237)

1 gallon (12.5lbs) of Raw Honey – $37.50 (We actually bought four gallons while we were there, but only one is for us. This is the best, cheapest place I have ever found raw honey. We’ve paid as little as $25 a gallon over the years we’ve been buying from them, but apparently this was a really bad year for the bees and there is a shortage of honey so the prices are up. It’s still worth it to this honey-loving family!)

Total: $37.50

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 Sam’s Club

2 (54-oz) jars Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil @ $15.00 each – $30.00

Total: $30.00

Grand Total for all Bulk Purchases: $129.36

I didn’t plan a weekly menu this week as my kitchen is undergoing a major renovation over the next few days and it’s almost impossible for me to cook in it right now. My older three children are staying with grandparents all week, so my husband and I are kind of in eat-whatever-you-can-find-that-doesn’t-require-kitchen-prep mode, supplemented by the occasional out-to-eat treat. 🙂 Looking forward to getting back to a more normal schedule soon!

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54 Comments

  • Andrea B. says:

    I love our Amish bulk store as well.(Near Kingston, WI) It’s about the cheapest in our area for any spice & most flours! http://www.amishinwisconsin.com/LocationsMaps/Green-Lake-County

  • Kimberly says:

    I’ll be praying for your kitchen renovation to go smoothly and f-a-s-t, Brigette–and as stress-free as possible for all of you!

  • That’s awesome, but I think you meant to say Coconut oil and not Olive oil at Sam’s Club; as well there is a $3.00 savings this month on this oil, which can be redeemed twice!

  • Elizabeth says:

    I smiled so big when I read this! I’m going back to Mt. Pleasant, MI (where I grew up) in a couple months and two things I’m really looking forward to are going to the Amish store (in Clare) and getting local honey (in Shepherd).

  • Deborah says:

    I see that the purchase from Sam’s was organic, but am I correct that the other items were not?

  • Kim says:

    Silly question, I know, but what do you do with the wheat kernels?

    • Karen says:

      If you have a mill, hand cranked or electric, you can make your own whole wheat flour. I love my electric mill.

    • Kimber says:

      I wasn’t willing to invest in a really expensive grinder, so I bought a small coffee grinder off of Amazon for around $25. It only grids a cup at a time, but it’s been perfect for occasional use.

    • Brigette says:

      I grind my own whole wheat flour. My dad bought me an electric mill one Christmas, and I use it ALL the time. Fresh ground flour tastes amazing!

  • Cynthia says:

    My uncle is the dentist in Homer! I couldn’t believe it when I read that I little tiny town name! What a small world.

  • Eunice B says:

    http://www.discoverbulk.com/StoreLocator.aspx is a good source of finding bulk food stores, some Mennonite & Amish owned…just a FYI. Our family owns one in Southern Maine so the 50 lb bag of Prairie Gold Kernels looks pretty familiar! 😉

    • kimh says:

      Thanks for the link!! Great site!

    • Erin says:

      It brings up high-end natural food stores in my area–and a bakery, of all things!

      • Eunice B says:

        The distributor, Dutch Valley, supplies thousands of items in bulk to many types of stores & in your case, a bakery, too, Erin. 🙂 It’s possible there aren’t any small Amish/Mennonite bulk food stores in your area….sorry. There’s always Aldi! 🙂

    • Becky says:

      Eunice- whats the name of your family store? We often travel to NH/ Southern Maine and I would love to go there.

      • Eunice B says:

        No, way, Becky! 🙂 We’d love to have you stop by if you’re in the area! I’m not trying to hijack by advertising on this thread, but since you asked, here’s the link to our page on fb. 🙂 facebook.com/CornerstoneCountryMarket

  • Kathy N says:

    I found this bulk and natural foods store by accident last year and enjoy going there. Kauffman’s Country Store is located at 9550 W. State Road 81, Beloit, Wisconsin. 608-362-1750. http://beloitcountrystore.com

  • laura says:

    Brigette, thank you so much for this post! I live in Michigan and want to plan a trip to Countryside. Do they have certain hours or days that they are open? What other sorts of dry goods do they have? Any fresh produce? It’s a bit of drive for me and since they don’t have a telephone I want to plan my trip and make sure it’s worth my while. Thanks!!!!

    • Brigette says:

      I’m guessing they aren’t open on Sundays, but they are open every other day (we’ve even gone on holidays and they’ve been open!). I don’t know the hours exactly, but as long as you go within the basic 9 to 5 time frame, you’ll be safe. 🙂 They carry all kinds of grains, flours, spices (organic too) – buying in bulk usually saves you money, but you can buy smaller amounts too. They have some produce (grown from their gardens), which is good stuff but not always very cheap (sometimes they have great deals, though, like home grown asparagus for $0.99/lb). They have lots of fresh baked goods (bread, granola, doughnuts, cinnamon rolls, etc) and great homemade cheeses (again, not always the cheapest prices but great quality). You can buy fresh eggs, goat’s milk, etc. too. This store is really by the Amish for the Amish, so it’s not geared towards the general public. But they are super nice and welcoming!

      • laura says:

        Thank you so much for your reply and all of the helpful information! My friend and I can’t wait to go there!

  • Jen says:

    Love bulk food stores! My favorite is Beacheys in Arthur IL. I was just there a few weeks ago to stock back up.

  • Emily says:

    Gosh, I had no idea about this. This would have been great when I was living in Ohio!

    • Brigette says:

      Well, the only way to know about it is by word of mouth, or by driving past it and discovering it (which probably isn’t going to happen since it’s in a remote area). 🙂

  • Candy says:

    Small world! We’ve lived in Concord for 15 years and just recently discovered Countryside. The fried pies are a special treat!

    • Brigette says:

      Fun discovery, isn’t it? Yum! My mother-in-law loves to try all the different baked goods. Since I am having to avoid wheat right now (hopefully just temporarily – everyone else in my family eats it), I just stay away from that part of the store! 🙂

  • Thanks so much for sharing, Brigette!

    If you’re storing the grains in the freezer just to keep meal worms from forming, 48 hours does the trick and you can use the freezer space for something else after that. Not sure if that’s why you store them in the freezer, but I thought I’d share!

    I hope your kitchen renovation goes smoothly – we’ll pray for speed, excellence and low stress! How exciting!

    Lea

    • Brigette says:

      I didn’t know that about the grains – thank you! I store them in the freezer because…my mom always did. 🙂 also, I lived in Taiwan for two years and everything got buggy. I guess I am paranoid! We currently have freezer space for them, hut I really should get brave and do it your way. The house we just moved into has a walk-in pantry, so I have the shelf space for them. Thanks SO much for the kitchen-remodel well wishes. 🙂

  • Jacki says:

    If anyone here lives in central MO, our local Amish stores are great. They are located near Clark MO and offer home baked goods and bulk foods. A drive around the area may net you more goodies as they put out signs in front of their homes with what they have that week. My sister goes for fresh eggs and other dry goods twice a month.

  • Jay Kay says:

    Walmart.com carries a few Augason Farms items. They have a 26 lb. bucket of hard white wheat kernels (packed in mylar) for $15 right now. Free shipping on orders over $50! I bought a bucket recently from them for $13 and change, so their prices must go up and down often.

  • April says:

    I used to live in Albion, which is right near Homer and Concord. I was so surprised to read both those names in the article. I am going to send this to my parents who still live in Albion so that they can stop by these places. They love to check out local places to find local products.

  • Sara says:

    What a small world. I grew about a mile from D and J’s Honeybees, so I was so surprised to read such familiar road names! My brother and sister both live on Cornell Road – I wonder if you know them or if we have mutual friends?

  • Lorrie says:

    I did a double take as I skimmed through the site (I probably shouldn’t admit that I’m a skimmer, should I?! 🙂 ) and saw that you shopped at the Amish store in HOMER, MI and at J&D’s in CONCORD! I live in Coldwater & just recently learned about these businesses. Our homeschool group had a field trip at J&D’s this past fall–and I’m hooked on their honey, too! 🙂 It was just so fun to read about these familiar, tiny towns and out-of-the-way businesses from someone so far away. Thanks for making me smile!

  • bberg says:

    For readers in Kansas. Glenn’s Bulk Food Shop in Pleastview/Hutchinson is a great place to buy bulk. Spices, mixes and flours are great prices. I always find something new to try.

  • jenna says:

    Do you have any tips on storing honey and keeping it fresh? Mine always seems to get hard/crystalized before I can finish the bottle. We keep it in a spice cabinet.

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