Keto on a budget, let’s talk veggies

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Keto on a budget, let’s talk veggies. Keto on a budget. Is it possible? Yes, and this is coming from a man that realistically spends more for 2 than most families of 4. If I wasn’t a food blogger, I could conceivably cut my costs in half. You CAN do this on a reasonable budget. I shop once a month, for the whole month. Yup. ONCE. One trip. One day. Repeat 30 days later. I’ve got this down to a science :).

Shop around. Don’t forget the Dollar Store. Find out when they markdown the meats, time your trips then if
possible. Next, think about what you used to buy before going keto. Now, remove the carby foods and processed stuff. No more pasta, rice, bags of potatoes, packages of Oreos, Cheez-its (I’m sorry….), etc. BANG. You just saved some money, didn’t you? Think about it. I’m going to assume you ate meat before, right? Well, you still are going to. That part hasn’t changed. Take the money you aren’t spending on carb stuff, use it to get your veggies. They are low calorie, low carb, high fiber = less hungry = EAT LESS = SPEND LESS!

Go frozen, they cost significantly less than ‘fresh.’ Yes. Frozen. Frozen? Hobbit, you been drinkin’?? Nope. Stone sober. Bear with me for a sec. Unless you are buying your veggies at the farm, frozen are more fresh. Wait. What? Yes. More fresh. Here’s why:

Typical ‘fresh’ produce: – harvested – STARTS TO AGE!
– Trucked to processing plant
– sorted\washed
– packaged
– boxed
– put in shipping depot
Day 2 – produce age 2 days
– loaded on a truck 12-24 hours later
– moves about the country at 50-70mph, 8 hours a day
Day 3-4 – produce age 4 days
– Arrives at distribution center – Sits
Day 5? Day 6? – produce age 6 days
– Ordered
– loaded on another truck
– delivered to the store (30 minutes away? 4 hours?)
– Unloaded
– Checked in
– Stocked on shelf
So, how fresh IS it by the time it sits in the produce section for 6 hours, 12 hours, 3 days? How long will it be in your home? How much will end up wasted??

Now, let’s think about frozen veggies: – harvested – STARTS TO AGE!
– Trucked to processing plant
– sorted\washed
– packaged – FLASH FROZEN – AGING SUSPENDED!!
– put in shipping depot
Day 2 – produce age 1 day
– loaded on a truck 12-24 hours later
– moves about the country at 50-70mph, 8 hours a day
Day 3/4 – produce age still…1 day
– Arrives at distribution center – Sits
Day 5-6 – produce age still…1 day
– Ordered
– loaded on another truck
– delivered to the store (30 minutes away? 4 hours?)
– Unloaded
– Checked in
– Stocked on shelf
Sits in store cooler 2, 5, 11, 14 days. Produce age? 1 day.
So, for easily half the cost of ‘fresh,’ you are getting fresher food that also will store longer. If you have a chest freezer, you can buy in bulk when the specials are running and stock up. Just think of the gas and time you’ll save :). Now, this doesn’t mean ALL ‘fresh’ produce should be swapped for frozen. Some not-frozen items last quite well just the way they are, such as:

Kabocha (sooo versatile!! Read on it!)
Cabbage (Napa and bok choi too) – lasts a long time, low cost per serving, very dense so can be used for more than one meal, and excellent to be used as noodles, wraps, probiotics, etc.
Radishes – sautéed, they are so close to potatoes you would struggle to know the difference, inexpensive.
Celery
Avocados – slice, brush with lemon juice, and freeze
Mushroom – slice, freeze
Onions – keep dry and out of the light, they will last months.
Save your cutoffs – you know, the radish and onion tops, that last 1.5ʺ of zucchini, that wilted celery. Toss them in the freezer until you have a big bag. Thaw. Roast in the oven on a baking sheet for 30 minutes or so. Toss in a pot of simmering water or your crock pot for a few hours. Hey, you make bone broth, right? So, why not veggie too? You’re welcome 🙂

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