Sunday, December 9, 2012

New To Us Foods- Real Food Eating

The other night as Paul and I were searching the far corners of our kitchen for the perfect bedtime snack, I realized something.  We eat weird foods.  Maybe I should clarify, we eat "real food" which in translation, can mean weird.  Below you will find listed a few of our favorite "new arrivals" and where I have found the best deal.  Keepin' it frugal....or rather, keepin' it real.

Almond Milk-  Almond milk has 50% more calcium than dairy milk (who knew?) and unlike milk, it happens to contain 50% of your daily value of antioxidants and vitamin E.  Learn more about almond milk vs. other options by clicking here (Frugal Tip: Aldi now carries Almond Milk)

Farm Fresh Eggs/Chicken-  We LOVE our farm fresh eggs.  Once you taste the difference it will be hard to go back.  We found a farmer not far outside of town who has free range, antibiotic, and hormone free chicken/eggs.  Nothing like chickens literally greeting you as you step out of your car.  (Oh yea, their chicken is fantastic too!)  (No Frugal get what you pay for.  I'd recommend Weavers if you are from around here or find a farmer- they are out there!)  

Quinoa-  We have been eating quinoa in place of rice for the most part.  Quinoa has 50% more protein and fiber than brown rice among other benefits.  It is often referred to as "The Supergrain of the Future." (Frugal Tip: I have found it to be cheaper if you buy it out of the bulk bins.  Festival, Gordy's and Mega all carry it in bulk)

Chia Seeds-  These seeds are crazy good for you! 100% more essential fatty acids than salmon, double the antioxidants found in blueberries, 6x more calcium than milk, 6x more iron than spinach, high in fiber, anti-inflammatory, and provides natural extended energy.  We sprinkle them on oatmeal and bake them in about anything that bakes. Click here for more info. (Frugal Tip: Again, go bulk bins on this one.  Festival is actually cheaper than Weavers.  Ordering online may also be worth looking into.)

Coconut Oil and Olive Oil-  These 2 oils have replaced my canola oil and become my go-to.  My favorite real food blogger has a great post on oil choices if you are interested.  (Frugal Tip- Unrefined coconut oil can be expensive!  I have found the best deals on Amazon and have purchased in bulk on free shipping days.)

Sea Salt- Did you know that sea salt contains 92 nutrients vs. table salt which contains only 2?  Aluminum and sugar is also sometimes added to table salt.  That was enough said for us.  We are a sea salt family now.  (Frugal Tip: Although I purchased my sea salt at Walmart for a litte more than table salt, I noticed the Dollar Tree carries it now.)

Kale-  True story... As my husband was eating this the other day he paused and said "Wow, I love this stuff.  I could eat it everyday."  I had to fight back tears of joy.  (Frugal Tip: Farmers Market is an awesome place to buy kale!  Walmart and other grocery stores carry it during the "off-season" Appleton friends- shop Woodmans on this one)

Fruits- We eat a lot of fruit.  Some of our new favorites are grapefruit, kiwi, and avacado.  All of which have super food properties. One kiwi provides 117% of you vitamin C which is more than an orange has to offer.  (Frugal Tip: Aldi had fantastic produce and prices!)

Oats-  We eat a lot of oats around here.  We eat oatmeal most mornings, make homemade granola cereal,  and I am learning how to incorporate oats into my baking.  (Check out my sister-in-laws blog for an awesome granola recipe)

Natural Sweeteners-   We have been trying to cut back on processed sugar for lots of reasons.  Just google sugar and you will get a wide variety of opinions on how much is safe, what kinds are good, and everything in between.  After researching it, we have decided to cut out high fructose corn syrup (which is in almost everything....),  be very aware of how much processed sugar we are eating, and whenever possible, go back to the basic sweeteners.  I use primarily honey and maple syrup with the intent to look into stevia (haven't made up my mind on that one yet).  (Frugal Tip:  Nothing will be cheaper than white refined sugar but if you choose to go a different route buy local.  Ask around.  I get our honey from my old neighbor when I can, and syrup from Cranberry Fest) 

What superfoods or real foods are your favorites?  Does anyone have any tips on being frugal when it comes to purchasing these things?  All this talk about food is making me hungry.  Time to hit up the kitchen for a Packer victory snack.... too soon?