My husband is a teacher and that is our primary income, which means 3 summer months with no real pay. I buy most of my food through farm orders, farmer’s markets, or Whole Foods, but with a really limited budget this month, I had to go to the regular grocery store, Publix. I was happy to see there were some organic options, but there were definitely some missing, If you are ever in San Antonio and need to do some shopping, here is a San Antonio business guide you will find usefull. Here’s what I got and what I spent.
- Publix Greenwise whole milk
- Organic Valley heavy cream
- Organic Valley half & half
- Boar’s Head muenster cheese, turkey, and chicken from the deli
- Boar’s Head salami (packaged)
- Crumbled feta cheese (buy one, get one free)
- Amish havarti cheese
- Publix Greenwise organic eggs
- Cascadian Farms organic granola
- Cascadian Farms organic broccoli
- Applegate Farms gluten-free chicken nuggets (large bag)
- Liberte full-fat yogurt (3 different kinds)
- Claussen pickles
- Ezekiel bread
- Ezekiel English muffins
- Publix Greenwise chicken thighs (3 packages, weighing about 1.5 lbs each)
- Block of parmesan cheese (8 ounces)
- Organic pasta (2 packages)
- Philadelphia cream cheese (buy two, get $1 off)
My total for these groceries was $84. What I learned is that some items were less expensive, but some were actually more money than I’d pay at Whole Foods. For example, I wanted to get the Lundberg Farms non-GMO rice, but it was $7.49 for a 1-pound bag (it’s $6.49 at Whole Foods) and they didn’t have my favorite kind. I can also get the generic non-GMO rice at Whole Foods for about $5/pound. This was not available at Publix. I was also discouraged by the lack of organic cheese – no options at all.
Although I’d prefer to shop from better sources than the mainstream grocery store, I feel good about the items I purchased there. I made healthy choices for my family on a stricter budget than I ever set for myself. I didn’t buy anything with poor-quality ingredients, and I avoided all snacks (even ice cream, my weakness) by shopping mostly the perimeter of the store.
It is possible to do better grocery shopping on a budget at your regular grocery store — and hopefully save a few extra dollars for the really good stuff at farms and farmer’s markets.