I get asked this question all the time. “How do you afford to buy everything organic?” To answer simply, I don’t buy everything organic, but I do buy a select number of items that I feel are CHEAP and best eaten organically. I shared a post recently “Comparing Apples to Apples” where I talked about the comparison between organic and conventionally grown. I prefer buying organic for 2 main reasons: First, it is grown without antibiotics, pesticides, and preservatives. Secondly, organic foods “taste” better. I use this principle when shopping: buy organic first, and if not reasonably priced, buy conventionally grown. Today I want to share a few ways to save on buying dairy organic, and what items are worth the splurge.
1. Organic milk to me is a NECESSITY! Yeah you might spend an extra buck or two for that gallon of milk, but the benefits far outweigh the price. Conventional milk is loaded with antibiotics and growth hormones. Ever wonder why we see adolescents developing earlier than normal? All the growth hormones found in food, with milk being the chief culprit. Milk is the main consumable dairy item that we use the most, so do yourself a huge favor and please buy only organic. And did we talk about taste?! OMG…there is no comparison to that creamy, wholesome, almost milkshake like taste you get from drinking organic milk. My favorite brand is Organic Valley, but I also love Stoneyfield Farms and Horizons. Organic heavy cream is another item I only buy organic because it has no added stuff in it.
2. Yogurt…once again, a MUST! For same reasons as above. I prefer organic yogurt with live cultures. It is more nutritionally healthy and the taste is superior. To save money, I buy the large container (16-24 oz) for about $3.59, only about a dollar more than its conventional counterpart. I equally like Chiobani greek yogurt. You want to stick with brands that don’t have fillers in it, so organic or high quality greek yogurt goes a long way here.
3. Eggs. Here is one area where I either buy organic or cage free eggs, which usually runs around $3 a dozen, not bad for nature’s most perfect protein. At 25 cents an egg, it is worth the splurge for another item you use a lot in the kitchen. I for one can tell a big difference in regular conventional eggs and organic or cage free ones fed a vegetarian diet. The yolks are more richer in color and taste in organic/cage free eggs. I also like the idea that I am not consuming growth hormones or antibiotics in them. Your breakfast will be special…trust me 🙂
4. Butter. I love butter so much, I will be dedicating a whole blog to it soon…but I digress…Lol! I don’t always buy organic, but I do splurge and buy QUALITY! Organic butter is not much more in price (Costco has cheap organic butter @ $7.50 for 2 pound boxes!) My absolute favorite butter is Kerrygold Irish butter (grassfed), which I use on special dishes, but my all around favorite high quality butter is Cabot brand! Whenever that brand is on sale, I stock up. Land O Lakes is a good brand too. Please…don’t buy generic butter! I don’t care what they say, there is a taste and quality difference.
5. Sour cream, cheeses, buttermilk, etc. These are items I don’t buy organic, but I do buy quality. I love Daisy sour cream…the best all natural one in my opinion. Cabot wins my vote again on their cheddar cheeses – fabulous! The best place to purchase specialty cheeses like parmesan, fresh mozarella, asiago, etc. is at Costco or Sam’s. You can buy in bulk and save! For buttermilk, I buy Marberg or Purity, and I only buy the quart size as it does not have a long shelf life.
So there you have it. Dairy is one of the cornerstones of your diet that you should splurge and buy organic whenever possible to lessen the consumption of added growth hormones and antibiotics to your diet. Start with a half gallon of milk. It will be the best first delicious investment you will make in making healthy transitions in your diet 🙂