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Goal: lower monthly grocery budget from $300 to $200

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Goal: lower monthly grocery budget from $300 to $200

Old 02-04-16, 07:05 PM
  #26  
TheLibrarian
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But you're fine with tongue and pig snout? Cheapest meat in the Americas.
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Old 02-04-16, 07:15 PM
  #27  
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No pasta. Or white potatoes. Cheap, but not nutrient dense at all.

beans, chicken, pork, stew meats/roast, eggs. Protein rich, and as many veggies as possible. I also supplement a lot with yogurt, and nuts for protein. Cook weekly, and try to make meals with leftovers.

i use sweet potatoes a lot, and rice for my starches. I, personally, consider beans a starch though they have protein.

Use sales and coupons too. Depending on your market look for small mom and pop type markets. We have some here and I save a good bit regularly, especially for fresh produce.

Oh! I also love rotisserie chicken. Look for those raised without additives. For a single guy, I love them as is for a quick post work meal, and leftovers can be used for a lot of different dishes. Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 02-04-16, 07:34 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by TheLibrarian View Post
But you're fine with tongue and pig snout? Cheapest meat in the Americas.
Lengua and Head Cheese?
Delicious: time consuming but worth the effort, or just go to the Bodega.......



-Bandera
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Old 02-05-16, 07:00 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Senrab62 View Post
No pasta. Or white potatoes. Cheap, but not nutrient dense at all.
One could argue that on a 3,000 calorie per day diet, not all your food needs to be nutrient dense. Nevertheless, potatoes are one of the few foods that humans can subsist on exclusively, and stay healthy, for long periods of time. Based on that, they would seem to be nutrient dense enough that it wouldn't be an issue to have them make up a large part of total calories.
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Old 02-05-16, 10:20 AM
  #30  
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Yeah white potatoes get a bum rap; they're just as nutritious as sweet potatoes, although the vitamin/mineral content is slightly different. They do have more carbs and a higher glycemic index; but that shouldn't be a concern for trained athletes, we're not talking about diabetics here. And the impact on blood sugar is blunted if you eat your taters along with some protein anyways. The notion that white potatoes are junk/empty calories just because they're white is just plain wrong.
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Old 02-06-16, 08:39 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by Spld cyclist View Post
One could argue that on a 3,000 calorie per day diet, not all your food needs to be nutrient dense. Nevertheless, potatoes are one of the few foods that humans can subsist on exclusively, and stay healthy, for long periods of time. Based on that, they would seem to be nutrient dense enough that it wouldn't be an issue to have them make up a large part of total calories.
i disagree. No way that a majority of ones caloric intake should be white potatoes. There are simply too many other, more nutrient dense tubers, veggies, fruits, etc that would be better choices from a cost and nutrition standpoint. IMHO.

I love them, personally, but would prefer a sweet potato based on taste alone.
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Old 02-06-16, 08:44 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by jsk View Post
Yeah white potatoes get a bum rap; they're just as nutritious as sweet potatoes, although the vitamin/mineral content is slightly different. They do have more carbs and a higher glycemic index; but that shouldn't be a concern for trained athletes, we're not talking about diabetics here. And the impact on blood sugar is blunted if you eat your taters along with some protein anyways. The notion that white potatoes are junk/empty calories just because they're white is just plain wrong.
Do you have any references regarding that? I have always read/heard that sweet potatoes are much better in overall nutrition especially with macro/micro nutrients. Very curious as I try to be as nutrient dense as possible.

Blunted but still existent for certain. I am carb reduced by choice, so I am in a different boat when it comes to blood sugar impact. I try to reduce it because it's not necessary. I save blood sugar spikes for cheat days or holidays lol.
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Old 02-06-16, 08:57 AM
  #33  
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You need a big pot.

Put some oil and and chopped celery/carrots/onions in a pot and cook them for a few minutes. Add a pound of lentils and cook for a half hour. Chop a couple pounds of cheap meat. Chicken thighs, turkey legs, that sort of thing, and a bay leaf or two. Then add some potatoes. You can rice if you like, or pasta. But potatoes are best in this situation. Then add a pound of veggies.
Anything you want.
Then throw it in the fridge. Come dinner, add some spices and flavors (one day it might be tomato paste and italian spices, the next it might be chile powder. Or cheese, turmeric, and a dash of mustard. There's a dozen ways to mix it up. But that's dinner for a few nights. When I did this I found some good bread from a bakery with real butter on it elevated the meal into something enjoyable.
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Old 02-06-16, 09:10 AM
  #34  
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So what's better from a COST and nutrition standpoint? Sweet potatoes often cost 3-4 times (on a weight basis) the cost of regular potatoes where I shop. Bananas 2-3x, apples 4x, summer and zucchini squashes 4x, tomatoes 5-6x, broccoli and cauliflower 6-8x, etc. (This is based on buying potatoes at about $0.20/lb, which is achievable if one watches the sales and buys a decent quantity. It's not unusual to get them at $0.10/lb on a good sale. Other prices are for the produce store where I shop. The differences can be greater at the standard grocery store, and all prices for produce are higher there unless there's an unusually good sale). Not that these foods are all particularly expensive, but it's significant if one is trying to meet a particular budget. I can't actually think of any fruits, vegetables, or tubers that are consistently as cheap as potatoes. (Maybe turnips or parsnips, but I don't typically eat those). Dried legumes probably are as cheap on a calorie basis (just guessing, as I haven't done the math), but they're a different category, and they're kind of self-limiting due to the massive amount of fiber. Same for oatmeal.
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Old 02-06-16, 09:20 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by TheLibrarian View Post
But you're fine with tongue and pig snout? Cheapest meat in the Americas.
Beef tongue is now accepted as a delicacy in some areas and priced accordingly. My favorite Japanese BBQ restaurant sells center cut tongue for $10 a serving, where a meal is usually 3+ servings of something. A ~3 pound tongue from the butcher is over $20.

Last edited by Drew Eckhardt; 02-06-16 at 09:28 AM.
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Old 02-06-16, 09:31 AM
  #36  
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I'd be happy to keep ours down to $300/wk.
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Old 02-06-16, 10:39 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by Senrab62 View Post
Do you have any references regarding that? I have always read/heard that sweet potatoes are much better in overall nutrition especially with macro/micro nutrients. Very curious as I try to be as nutrient dense as possible.

Blunted but still existent for certain. I am carb reduced by choice, so I am in a different boat when it comes to blood sugar impact. I try to reduce it because it's not necessary. I save blood sugar spikes for cheat days or holidays lol.
White potatoes are a great and cheap source of easily digestable starch and glucose which is important for athletic performance and recovery. I actually prefer the taste of white potato to that of sweet potato. White potatoes are very nutrient dense as long as they are eaten with their skins, that's why I always boil them with their skins and eat the whole thing..The starch in potatoes is a much better/healthier fuel then sugar, they are also high in potassium and fibre...It also depends how white potatoes are cooked and what type of other foods they are combined with, baked potatoes have higher GI then boiled ones. I always boil mine and then combine them with protein, little bit of fat and other vegetables which blunts the glycemic index a lot...White potatoes have a very long history as part of human diet and there is no need to reject them because of some paleo dogma...French fries are terrible but potatoes eaten whole are very healthy.
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Old 02-06-16, 11:02 AM
  #38  
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If you are buying fresh fruits/vegetables now, try frozen. You don't lose much nutrition, they last longer and there is much less waste.
Also the suggestion of dried beans was a great one for higher calorie foods.

Edit: one thing I do is mix the beans with frozen vegetable soup mix for a nutritious, low sodium, cheap soup that can last almost all week in one batch.

Last edited by vinnyvincent; 02-06-16 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 02-06-16, 11:54 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Senrab62 View Post
Do you have any references regarding that? I have always read/heard that sweet potatoes are much better in overall nutrition especially with macro/micro nutrients. Very curious as I try to be as nutrient dense as possible.

Blunted but still existent for certain. I am carb reduced by choice, so I am in a different boat when it comes to blood sugar impact. I try to reduce it because it's not necessary. I save blood sugar spikes for cheat days or holidays lol.
I found these articles to be very interesting:
Whole Health Source: Potatoes and Human Health, Part I
Whole Health Source: Potatoes and Human Health, Part II
Whole Health Source: Potatoes and Human Health, Part III

I find Stephen Guyenet to be one of the most credible writers on diet, metabolic health, obesity, etc. He's an active researcher in these fields, articles are balanced, densely footnoted, and show the application of a careful scientific mind. His conclusion is that potatoes are not a perfect food, but populations that eat vast amounts of unprocessed potatoes show low levels of obesity and good metabolic health (i.e. low levels of diabetes). The second linked article explores the issue of low levels of toxins in potato skins (or high levels when they are allowed to get green). This is generally not a big problem, but it's something to be aware of.

Here's some more info:

Potatoes
Nutrition Facts and Analysis for Potato, baked, flesh and skin, without salt

To the OP: Sorry if I'm hijacking your thread.
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Old 02-06-16, 12:32 PM
  #40  
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lots of ways to cook good food for cheap ....

ox tail .... (lovely when cooked properly in a stew) ....

a tin of butter beans, drained, then mashed with chopped onion, garlic, fresh lemon juice, some dried crushed oregano, and a drizzle of extra vrgin olive oil .... a meal on it's own

lamb chops from the Halaal butcher .... I'm not muslim, but I buy meat from their butchers .... they sell lamb chops for 6.50 per kilogram vs 17 per kilo from a local supermarket or butcher here in the UK

spring chickens (baby chickens) .... done on the BBQ after it's been marinated

baby back pork ribs slowly smoked for 7 hrs on a weber bbq usin pecan wood chips for smoke.... served with homemade coleslaw and home made fries

lentils cooked with chopped onion, fresh parsley, chopped celery, salt, fresh ground black pepper, a chopped fresh chilliu, and when nearly done, add a level tablespoon of cornflower to thicken it up, and add 4 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar .... cheap as chips and makes a really good cheap meal

a whole chicken quartered, then boiled with chopped onion, whole carrots, large pieces of celery .... when the chicken is cooked, drain the stock but keep it ... remove the carrots and celery.... return the chicken chopped up to the pot with the stock ... add a handful of rice, salt and black pepper .... cook until the rice is soft, then remove from the heat .... beat 2 egg whites till frothy, then add the yolks and stir slowly..... add slowly to the soup, mixing continuosly, then add the juice of 1 1/2 fresh lemons ... don't reheat again as the eggs will curdle .... nice served war, (or cold the next day) .... serve with fresh baked artisan bread made from spelt flour ... you and feed a family of 4 for 2 days on this

loads more .... I've been poor many times but have always managed to eat good ... my mom was a pro chef and I learned from an early age
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Old 02-10-16, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
I went through a phase when I ate nothing but peanut butter and honey or jam on whole wheat bread. I usually ate 7/day of those. So that's 14 slices of bread, say 2/3 loaf, or 20 loaves/month at current prices for the real stuff, $100. PB and sweetener would be less than $100. There's also the brown rice diet, practiced by millions, where you eat mostly brown rice with condiments, a lot of it. That'd also be under you limit.
I hope you were not biking while eating that..
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