No one ever said eating healthy was cheap, but it also doesn’t have to break the bank. Have you ever strolled to the organic aisle at your supermarket and rolled your eyes at the prices? Us, too. Keep reading to see which healthy foods are actually worth a few extra dollars and which aren’t.
Save a few bucks!
Organic mac and cheese vs. regular mac and cheese
With the changes that companies like Kraft have made to their “regular” products—like removing artificial coloring, dyes, and flavors—the nutrition level of its mac and cheese is about even with its organic counterpart. If you’re still concerned about getting your vitamins and minerals in your Easy Mac, then spend the money you’ve just saved by buying the regular version on veggies, like broccoli, that you can add to your noodles.
Organic bananas vs. regular bananas
Bananas are nutritious whether they’re organic or not. Because their thick peels protect them from pesticides, buying organic probably isn’t worth it. The same goes for other fruits with hardy rinds and thick skins like oranges.
MUST-SEE: Keep Bananas Fresh Longer
Frozen blueberries vs. regular blueberries
Blueberries are good for your brain, and they’re pretty delicious to boot. Blueberries are frozen right after harvesting, so the big bags of frozen fruit you pick up in the freezer aisle still have the same nutrition content as the unfrozen blueberries in your produce section. If you’re worried about pesticides and you absolutely must have your berries not frozen, then opt for organic.
Splurge a little bit!
Greek yogurt vs. regular yogurt
First of all, what’s the difference between Greek yogurt and regular yogurt? Greek yogurt is essentially regular yogurt that’s been strained multiple times to remove excess moisture. That’s why Greek yogurt is a lot thicker than regular yogurt. Because Greek yogurt is more concentrated, it’s more nutritious, with about twice the protein that regular yogurt has. The caveat here: Avoid the super sweet Greek yogurts and flavor yours instead with honey or fresh fruit.
Steel-cut oats vs. rolled oats
Steel-cut oats are better for your digestive system because they have more fiber than rolled oats. Steel-cut oats will also keep you full longer because it takes your body more time to digest them. Just think, the extra money you’re spending on fancy oats will be saved when you find yourself feeling full longer and thus not spending money on snacks.
Single-serve ice cream vs. a carton of ice cream
When it comes to dieting, portion control is a major reason many of us fall off the wagon. We’d bet we’re not the only ones who have sat down in front of the TV with a pint of ice cream only to realize at the end of the episode that it’s all gone. So even though you’re paying a little more money for less ice cream, single-serve bars are better for your body.
If you’ve got your diet down pat but you’re really craving something sweet, reward yourself with a frozen yogurt bar. The sky’s the limit when it comes to toppings. Add anything you desire, be it fruit, chocolate, nuts, etc., and you can enjoy a dessert that don’t have all the artificial sweeteners that regular ice cream might.
NEXT: Still on the lookout for a good deal? These money-saving tricks for your garden will impress your neighbors and pad your wallet.
budget DIY garden tricks eggs and water
Keep Out Visitors
Sounds odd, but a mixture of six raw eggs and two gallons of water can work as a deer repellent. Let it sit outside for a week, then spray along your garden border. Another trick? Use eggshells, which can fertilize your plants as well as keep pests out!
budget DIY garden tricks compost
Create Your Own Compost
Collect kitchen scraps in a small, sealed container in your kitchen, and you'll wind up with an organic, pesticide-free compost that doesn't cost a dime.
budget DIY garden tricks newspaper
Save Old Newspapers
Spread your old newspapers over the soil before layering mulch over it. This will block weeds from growing and help retain moisture, so you'll need to water your garden less.
budget DIY garden boiling pasta water
Maximize Pasta Night
The scalding hot water leftover after you cook pasta can be used as a free — and non-toxic — weed killer!
budget DIY garden tricks beer lawn
Buy Extra Beer
A cheap way to banish brown spots on your lawn? Pour leftover beer on them. The sugars in beer kill off fungi and stimulate growth, so you're left with an expanse of lush green.
budget DIY garden tricks bug repellent
Create a DIY Bug Repellent
Hang a fabric softener sheet near (but not touching) your outdoor light fixtures; the light's warmth will help generate a scent that repels mosquitoes and moths.
budget DIY garden water save money
Save on Water
Rainy days are great for your garden, but make them do double-duty by collecting additional rainwater in barrels or buckets and you'll drastically cut back on your water bill.
budget DIY garden find mulch
Don't Buy Mulch
Tree-clearing or landscaping companies working in your neighborhood may be more than willing to give you the excess wood chips they don't use.