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Fruit and veg are costing us a fortune!

120 replies

hidinginthenightgarden · 01/11/2018 20:30

We have recently had a huge shake up with our diet and are eating alot more fruit and veg. This is having a huge impact on our food bill and I cannot seem to get a hold on it. I use frozen raspberries, pre-prepared med veg, peppers, onions and green beans plus a few other mix veg bits. Even so, we have, just this week (since sunday) consumed 10 apples, 8 bananas, 2 punnets of strawberries, 1 bag of grapes, 1 pineapple, a bag of easy peelers and most of the frozen raspberries. Veg wise we have had 3 lots of tenderstem broccoli, butternut squash, sweet potato x 2, corn on the cob, green beans, carrots and sugar snap peas. I bought more bananas and pineapple today and am holding out after that until sunday when we will have another shopping load delivered. I cannot see how else to bring the cost down though. The delivered shopping cost £60 and I have spent at least another £25 since then.
The markets here are crap for fruit and veg. Lidl fruit went was growing mould in 2 days. Any other things I can try or just accept that to eat well it costs alot more than eating processed shit and then wonder why we have an obesity crisis?

OP posts:
formerbabe · 02/11/2018 19:17

Today I bought one single courgette and one single lemon...came to 93p....Shock

ivykaty44 · 02/11/2018 19:21

Strawberries are not in season, do t buy them as it’s cheaper to buy plums or 🍊

Find a good greengrocer

We have a great one 5 miles away, but it’s worth it when avocado are 29’p or seasonal veg is tastier than cold store supermarkets fruit and half the price

I buy half and half never buy fruit for a week, only but for a couple or three days

EvaHarknessRose · 02/11/2018 19:23

A large melon or watermelon goes a long way (and the melon lasts if you cut it gradually - dd works her way through one over two weeks).

Well done on the changes, 2 or 3 fruit a day is fine, especially if you are transitioning from more processed stuff. Try morrisons wonky carrots with homemade houmous (I blitz a tin of chick peas with garlic, tahini and lemon juice and sometimes some spice).

Seniorschoolmum · 02/11/2018 19:24

So seasonal & cheap- root veg, cooking apples, broccoli, cabbage, sprouts, and frozen - peas & sweetcorn.
Add Tabasco, bacon, tinned Toms & kidney beans.
Try Gumbo or jambalaya, veggie curries, oven roasted roots with maple syrup.
For desert, core cooking apples and pack them with dates and brown sugar before baking

letallthechildrenboogie · 02/11/2018 20:10

Aldi and Lidl are great for cheap fruit and vegetables.

MarcieBluebell · 02/11/2018 20:16

You don't need to eat much fruit. It's fructose. Stop buying so much.

confusedofengland · 02/11/2018 20:35

Get to your local supermarket for reducing times! I went to Tesco tonight at 7pm & for the following for about £7 (1 punnet/pack of each thing, unless stated):

  • Raspberries
  • Strawberries
  • Blackberries
  • Large bag pineapple slices
  • Fruit salad cup
  • Melon/melon/pineapple fingers
  • Pears (organic)
  • Grapes
  • Passion Fruit
  • Baby sweet corn x 2
  • Sweet potato fries
  • Broccoli/cauliflower
  • Broccoli/cauliflower/carrots
  • Yellow peppers x 2 (organic)

I think that's it! There was absolutely loads of stuff to be had, about 12 of the big green trays in total, so plenty to go round lots of people. It gets thrown out if not sold, sadly.
confusedofengland · 02/11/2018 20:36

Ooh yes, forgot some exotic-looking pink mushrooms Grin

confusedofengland · 02/11/2018 20:37

And fresh peas

user1486076969 · 02/11/2018 20:40

I've never bought 'Tender Stem' broccoli....we by bog standard version...

IceniSky · 02/11/2018 20:46

We eat veg heavy food. I don't eat meat and DH and DD only eat it 2 times a week max. That cuts cost.

We eat lots of pulses and beans. Which count as 1 and bulk out with veg.

I'll batch cook roasted veg sauce which goes with pasta, cous cous, wraps etc or roasted cauliflower Dahl etc. I'll make soup with odds and ends at th weekend. Lentil loaf etc for lunch with cheap salad.

Gwenhwyfar · 03/11/2018 00:25

"A head of savoy cabbage for a quid will go as far as your probably £6 worth of tenders ten brocolli."

You don't want to smell me (and lots of other people!) after eating a head of cabbage.

kateandme · 03/11/2018 01:00

go shopping at the end of the day.for the reduced veg.they have to chuck it but its fine for sometimes longer than they stuff they have on shelves!and always check the isle to see if any are reduced.
tins carrots and veg for when your cooking with them.also tinned potatos etc and fruit if your cooking with them.
do you have anything else you could say right every month we will not buy a couple of bottle of wine or something so you can see its being taken off to be put into the fruit and veg.

kateandme · 03/11/2018 01:32

will eople stop saying to have less fruit!the sugar in fruit is far more complex than refined it isn't and doesn't do the same to the body as a bag of sugar!
could you make any other changes.even if its for a quick fix veggie stock.so a couple of own brand tins could save you this weeks pounds for veg.own brand squash or yoghurts.
any creams.
even if you don't want to do a permanent squash (though now weve changed and been on own brand squash for instance Id never want to go back.just do it to get swap for swap on meal or weeks veggies.
If you go to shop for chicken for curry.dont.eithe rmake a cheaper jar of sauce and pasta.or swap for veggie curry or poached eggs.then you have right there saved 7pounds for chicken now to buy some veggies.i sometimes find this easier than trying to agonise over long term ways of saving for bloody food!

kateandme · 03/11/2018 01:35

go to shops now and find offer on pumkinds.then use for roasts.stews.soups.pumkin puree(pie)mash.rosti.

BitOfFun · 03/11/2018 02:59

Have you thought about growing your own? Great experience for the kids.

Obviously, it's not an instant solution, but something to think about for the future.

HereForTheLineEyes · 03/11/2018 06:46

Typically fruit wise we buy a big family sized bag of apples for lunch boxes, some loose bananas (I like them because the kids love them as a snack and love banana bread so they're never wasted) and maybe some frozen berries from time to time. I then have a look at whatever fruit they have on offer because it's nice for the kids to try different things.

Vegetable wise we get a couple of heads of normal brocolli, it's less than 50p per head, a kg bag or two of their basic carrots (kids love them raw as a snack), a 25kg bag of potatoes for £8 from the local farmer, healthier if you bake them and eat the skins, leeks, salad veg like lettuce and tomatoes and cucumber. I like always having salad veg because even in the winter. It can be a healthy addition to dishes like fajitas and sandwiches. Really now in winter though the focus is on soups, stews, curries and casseroles, so although none of us are keen on boiled carrots we love them in a stew or cooked in with them pot roast. Plenty of root veg can be bunged in these dishes and served with mash and a side of brocolli.

I work 3 days a week and often don't feel like cooking elaborate meals on those days. If I don't have something batch cooked in the freezer I would rely more heavily upon frozen peas, tinned beans/baked beans (recently discovered kids love mixed bean salad, wills this over the butter beans Hmm), tinned sweet corn and salad.

Tinned tomatoes and tomato concentrate are very good for you, and I'll sometimes make up a big pot of tomato pasta sauce with loads of carrots, onions, mushrooms, courgettes, garlic etc grated into it.

You can get a tasty soup recipe for nearly any veg no matter how cheap.

We buy from Sainsbury's because we live in NI and there is no Aldi here. It is a bit more expensive than asda (I think) but I think the quality of their fresh fruit and veg is slightly higher. We have a delivery pass that works out very very cheaply and I can sit at home and have a proper look at price per kg. I'd love to shop more locally, but with 3 kids including a toddler at home, a dog and working P/T I find it hard to get the time.

HereForTheLineEyes · 03/11/2018 06:50

Oh and so many onions. Nearly anything cooked from scratch starts out with chop an onion....and I normally cook double and freeze half saving it for another meal. So you are looking at probably a dozen onions a week.

Mominatrix · 03/11/2018 07:10

As may others are saying, your problem is that you are buying far too many fruit/veg which are not in season and imported.

Apples, Beetroot, Brussels Sprouts, Butternut Squash, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celeriac, Celery, Chestnuts, Chicory, Cranberries, Elderberries, Jerusalem Artichokes, Kale, Leeks, Onions, Parsnips, Pears, Potatoes, Pumpkin, Swede, Swiss Chard, Turnips, Watercress, Wild Mushrooms, Winter Squash - these are in season now and will be the cheapest.

Stilllivinginazoo · 03/11/2018 07:33

Have you got a junk food project near you?

LynetteScavo · 03/11/2018 07:34

Go seasonal.

Go to Ald

Travel to a decent market...my local market is amazingly cheap.

But as a previous poster said, fruit and veg does more than starchy good and chocolate, which is why obesity and poverty are often linked.

The "I can feed a family for £10 a week" brigade do seem to lack much fruit and veg.

Birdsgottafly · 03/11/2018 07:44

BitOfFun, not everyone has the land to be able to grow-their-own. Its the cheaper veg that grows well, in poor conditions/drought, which means very little is saved. Its always worth growing herbs, though.

Oly5 · 03/11/2018 08:09

Well done OP for changing your diet for the better. You will live longer and feel far better for it.
Some of the tips on here are great but I think you also just have to accept that lots of fruit and veg iS more expensive. Can you cut down in other areas to accommodate your increased food bill? Your shop overall sounds very cheap to me anyway

ginghamstarfish · 03/11/2018 09:33

'Normal' broccoli is fairly cheap, (and the stems are also to be eaten, chopped and added to the florets - in fact I like the stems more!). Cabbage, cauliflower, carrots, swede, onions etc all cheap and nutritious. Pre-chopped and frozen stuff is always going to cost more than fresh, depends how you value your time though.

bumblebee39 · 03/11/2018 09:43

It's to do with what veg and fruit you are eating. Look at what's on offer, and get lots of "uncool" but wonderful veg like normal broccoli, carrots, peas, sweetcorn, leeks, cabbage, cauliflower etc.

Also seasonal veg can be cheaper so at this time of year look for sweet potato and other tubers, kale, cabbage, squashes etc. Not salads and stir frys etc.

Also I limit fruit. In my house it's 1-2 pieces a day the rest from veg.

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