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Super Savings Saturday: Health Food Store, Aldi, Natural Grocers, Farm-Fresh Eggs (and ice cream!)

Here were the groceries we bought this week:

We spent $21.76 to buy the above groceries at the health food store and Aldi. See the full price breakdown here.

Then, we stopped by a new health food store in town (Natural Grocers) on our date night to check it out. I wasn’t impressed with the prices, but we did get a free bag of almonds thanks to a coupon a kind friend had shared with us that she wasn’t going to use.

We also bought three dozen eggs from my brother for $6.

And last, but not at all least, we stopped by Braum’s today to get a half gallon of ice cream and cones as a special treat for those in our family who can have dairy. (I made a fantastic non-dairy dessert with coconut whipped “cream” for the non-dairy eater–I’ll share the non-dairy whipped cream recipe next week. It’s a keeper!)

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  • No grocery shopping again this week, but a friend gave me a dozen eggs from her chickens, and some succulents from her garden.

    And my new lettuce has sprouted in the garden!

    • Andrea says:

      It’s the little things in life! Farm fresh lettuce is MONTHS away here. 🙁 I wish I lived closer to you, Brandy!

    • Catherine says:

      I’ve seen on your site that you buy when things go on “case sale” and I’m unfamiliar with that term/process. Maybe we just don’t have it here (dc area) but I’d love to know more about what it is if you would share.

      • It’s only done by a few stores in the west. We only have one store in our area that has case-lot sales. They sell cases of corn, tomatoes, beans, tuna fish, boxes of brownie mix, bags of sugar and flour, apple juice, etc. for a lot less than the normal price. You can get the whole case or not, but it saves money to stock up on the item when it’s on sale. A case can be 12-24 cans/boxes of something (generally); it’s how it is packaged. You can get a cheaper price on these items by buying them on sale a couple of times a year at the case-lot sale. Mandarin oranges are one of my favorite items to buy on case-lot sale at around .45 a can.

        We don’t have double coupons, coupons that round up, or Aldi’s here, so this has traditionally been one of the best ways to get items for less.

        The last several case-lot sales in our area have seen higher prices (for example, I used to buy mandarin oranges at .33 a can) and as we have continued to see a reduction in income as well, the case-lot sales have become too expensive for me for most items. Also, my family continues to grow. Buying items in bulk has often proved to be a better savings for us as we strive to eat for .40 per person per day or less.

    • Meredith says:

      Would lettuce grow in a pot? Our hoa won’t let us garden so we usually get a community garden plot. However, that’s just from march through December. I read an article today about how lettuce grows well here in the winter. Wondering if a pot would work? Do the roots go deep?

      • You can definitely grow lettuce in a pot! Where I live, lettuce and spinach grow best in the “winter” (which is more like spring weather). Lettuce roots grow 3-4 inches deep.

        Green onions are a great way to make the most of a pot, too; you can harvest the greens from the side (don’t dig up the plant) and let it keep growing in the middle. Green onions and Swiss chard grow all year-round here (Swiss chard can grow to 15º, for those who live where it gets that cold). With Swiss chard, you jusst harvest the outer leaves, and it keeps growing–a great thing to grow in a pot, too.

        • Meredith says:

          Thanks! We used to be able to have small gardens but they were voted out by our hoa. I grew cucumbers, peppers, and all sorts of things. It has just never dawned on me to do winter vegetables. I live in sc so I can probably do it. It’s been colder recently but our winter has been extremely warm. I usually fail with pots. Maybe I’ll give it another go!

      • Shelly says:

        You can also grow things like carrots, zucchini (bush type), and cucumbers(bush type). We have grown many veggies in pots before we had a garden. If you grow lettuce you might try leaf type as you can remove the leaves you and more will grow again.

  • I will be going back to Aldi today. I just went to grab olive oil, parm cheese, pasta (totally ran out – prego cravings), canola oil and basil leaves. Then I went to see what was on sale and saw the artisan lettuce and tomatoes. I can’t wait to go back and get some!

  • We have a fairly new Natural Grocers too, but I’ve only been there a couple of times.

  • Meredith says:

    I guess you finally got a health food store the rest of us complain about!!!!! 🙂

  • Victoria says:

    Can’t wait to hear about the coconut whip cream. Is it the recipe you had in your weekly menu a few weeks ago. I went out and bought the coconut milk for that one but have yet to make it.

  • We love our coconut milk whipped cream at the Penner House!!


  • I had seen that you bought the Artisan lettuce at Aldi and was inspired by you to try it. It was GREAT! 🙂

  • stephanie says:

    We have Natural Grocers, I love it!!!! They typically have the best prices on natural and organic items in my area. The same item sold at King Soopers or Whole Foods is almost always considerably cheaper at Natural Grocers. But if you buy mostly conventional food, Natural Grocers would be more expensive. I just love that they properly store grains and nuts in the refrigerator. They aren’t rancid and taste yummy! They do have good sales too. Crystal, sorry you weren’t impressed. Just throwing in my two cents because I love shopping there.

    • Crystal says:

      I think a lot of it is because I’m so spoiled by our other health food store and can get such great prices there on produce that the prices at Natural Grocers seemed quite high to me. Are their prices less than Whole Foods’ 365 brand? I didn’t look at every little thing so I’d be interested to know if their prices sometimes beat the 365 brand as (when we lived in Kansas City) I thought many of the 365 prices were quite good.

      • bea says:

        I love natural grocers here in dallas– they’re the best place for bulk spices and supplements, and I love the friendly, small scale vibe. while the regular prices are probably comparable to whole foods, the sale prices are great, especially produce sales. give it a few weeks and check back for the dairy clearance.

    • margaret says:

      I love our natural grocers too! We don’t have another health food store to compare it to. But compared to Hy-vee the prices are a lot cheaper. We get milk at natural grocers for a whole $1 cheaper. Plus the staff is a lot friendlier. Every single person in the store asks if you need help. I know some people would rather be left alone when they shop, but I like to know that the staff will actually help you and be happy about it. Also they’re knowledgeable about health food stuff because I’m assuming the people who work there actually eat the foods they sell. It’s one thing to know the product from a salesperson point of view and another to know from actually using/eating the product.

  • Holly says:

    I went to Aldis myself this week! Ours had great produce sales this week! Especially, for central NY in the middle of the winter! Cantaloupes for 1.29 each, 4lb of oranges for 1.59, grapes for 0.99 a pound and strawberries for 1.89!!!! I was sooo excited and the produce was fresh! I could not have been happier!

  • Amy Lauren says:

    I’m going to hit up Aldi tomorrow! I hope I can score some great deals there, I love the bananas :).

  • I am hoping an Aldi comes into our area eventually. I hear about all the good deals but we don’t have one. 🙁 We do have a few closeout grocery store near us though where I can sometimes get organic produce really inexpensively.

  • Karla says:

    Non dairy “ice cream” isn’t cheap but my non-dairy eater likes Tofutti, So Delicious, and Rice Dream varieties. It’s handy to have a pint around for times you you’re invited places that will be serving ice cream: church events, birthday parties, etc. I just bought a pint because my son is going to the reading all-star party this week at school. The menu is pizza and ice cream, so I’m providing him with non-dairy alternatives.

    • Kathy says:

      Karla, what will you provide as the pizza alternative? They’ll be serving pizza at V-Day party at daughter’s school and I’m at a loss as what to send as alternative?

  • Diana says:

    I love our Natural Grocers in Austin! They have the lowest prices on gluten-free items in our area! Watch for their sales because they are great. Right now they are selling Bob’s Red Mill Almond Flour for $5.45 a bag approximately. Normally it sells for $9 and up 🙂

  • Jennifer says:

    You can buy non-dairy ice cream, such as Rice Dream or some sorbets have no dairy. yes it is more expensive, but with only 1 person eating it it isn’t too bad. My 11 year old is allergic to dairy and eggs. Can’t wait for the recipe of the non-dairy dessert.

  • Katrina says:

    I love being able to buy “real” affordable food at ALDI and not having to mess with coupons all the time. 🙂 It’s such a relief.

  • Theresa says:

    I checked out the new Natural Grocers last weekend and felt like a kid in a candy store. I think what I liked most was being able to find all of our favorite allergy friendly products in one place and for a pretty great price! Now I wasn’t impressed with all the prices but my favorite gf flour was considerably cheaper and they had our favorite pancake mix that I haven’t found anywhere else in ages.

  • Anna says:

    I like the Natural Grocer’s in my area (DFW). I think they have good sales and clearance prices are excellent. Maybe you’ll score some good deals on clearance after they’ve been around for a couple months? The one I shop at has several clearance areas around the store. I also like it when they have the sample basket out in the personal care section 🙂

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