Eating raw food doesn’t have to mean breaking the bank. In fact, there are a number of ways, seven specifically right here, that can keep more moola in your piggy bank! And, who doesn’t want some more moola?! These money saving tips are easy to incorporate and still keep raw exciting and delicious.
Buy sunflower and pumpkin seeds – A lot of recipes call for the use of expensive cashews, pine nuts, pecans, etc. You can make the recipes less expensive by using sunflower seeds or pumpkin seeds without sacrificing much flavor, if any!
Juice pulp – Use your left over juice pulp and make raw dehydrated crackers out of it! Here is a video where I show you how. No need to waste that pulp by throwing it out when it can be the base of yummy raw crackers and crusts.
Almond (or any nut or seed) pulp – No need to throw this out! Make raw banana bread with it. Here is a recipe showing you how to make Cinnamon Banana Bread Squares.
Make homemade nut butters – I showed you how to make your own raw nut and seed butters before here. It can make a big difference in your wallet if you make your own. Big!
Simple smoothies – For a lot of us, green smoothies are a staple in our diets. But, making them with a bunch of fancy greens and fruits can add up in cost. When you need to save a few bucks, consider making green smoothies with simpler ingredients such as bananas and spinach, but add sass and variety to them by incorporating different spices or extracts. Think: nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, allspice, cayenne, Chinese Five Spice, garam masala, vanilla (or other flavor extracts), etc.
Raisins in place of dates – Many times I use raisins in place of dates to save money. Pie crusts, cheesecake crusts, and cookies are a great place to start with this tip. They add sweetness and binding abilities without costing you as much.
Buy in bulk – I talk about this a lot. Buying in bulk does save in the long term, even if it does briefly hurt in the short term. I buy almonds from Bremner Farms (just bought 30 pounds this week!), nuts/seeds/and other goods from Blue Mountain Organics, and Amazon. All great places to stock up!
What are some of your favorite tips for saving money when living the raw lifestyle?
Over the past many months I’ve received a variety of samples from some wonderful companies. The brilliant thing about these items is that they can be used to make a fast raw vegan snack or they are already a ready-to-eat raw vegan snack. Gotta love those! Sure, for some of these, I could make my own homemade versions, and I often do, but it’s nice to have these available online (and in some health food stores) for those times that I run out, I’m traveling, or I just plain want to be lazy and pay someone else to do it.
I’ve said many times… one of the keys to staying raw vegan with ease is having things that you can turn to quickly for snacking and eating. The following items are great for that! Some are perfect for snacks, travel, keeping in your desk drawer at work, making simple recipes, or having on hand when you’re stuck in line at the DMV. ;)
What I find especially exciting is that for the past year or so I’ve noticed there are many companies who are making amazing raw vegan products. It seems like every time I go to Whole Foods, there is something new. Gone are the days of limited choice. Today, we not only have a plethora of options, but these companies are making some butt-kicking products!
I love having nut butters in my refrigerator, so when Artisana sent me some of their products to sample, I was elated. For starters, I love enjoying nut butters right off the spoon – thick, rich, and satisfying. Artisana’s products fit that bill perfectly. They’re creamy and fresh – taste just like nuts (or seeds) should taste as if I were eating a handful of them. Sometimes a spoonful of nut butter is just what I need to hold me over until dinner (or until my next snack – lol).
But, that’s not all. I use these nut butters to make 1-minute raw vegan nut milks (blend a tablespoon of nut butter with a cup of water). I also use them to add a creamy element to dressings (especially the cashew butter – you’re going to love one of the new recipes I came up with using their Raw Cashew Butter). The beauty of raw nut butters is you don’t need to soak nuts for certain recipes like raw vegan milks, dressings, certain desserts, etc. You just scoop it out of the jar and add to your recipe. Easy peasy! For example, I used their raw tahini in this video and I used their Cacao Bliss in the smoothie written about here. I also used their almond butter, tahini, cashew butter, and coconut oil for some raw chocolate truffle recipes.
This is a new company for me. Kaia Foods sent me a number of their products to sample and I’m so happy they did. The first thing I tore into was the bag of sprouted sunflower seeds (garlic and salt). Yummm…. I could smell the garlic upon opening the bag. Later that day, I made a batch of cooked organic quinoa and tossed some of these on top. I was really impressed with how much flavor they added to the dish. As I write this, we have them in a little cup on our counter alongside dishes of goji berries and raisins for awesome power snacking! They also sent other flavors: Sweet Curry was AWESOME! If you’re a curry fan, these will not disappoint. Cocoa Mole was EXCELLENT (with a little cayenne kick that comes into play)! Teriyaki was SUPERB and I enjoyed these while I watched American Idol last week! The flavors of their seeds are exactly as described by their titles. You know what you’re getting when you bite into it. Kaia Foods makes the best flavored sprouted seeds. I like that I can eat them by themselves for a truly satisfying snack or I can add them to plain jane recipes, which will totally kick them up many notches in excitement. I’m officially a loyal fan! Great job, Kaia Foods!
Next, I tried their Spiced Apple Fruit Leather- wow – that was a super treat. Each bite the flavor was like, POW POW! The texture is as you’d expect with a fruit leather… chewy, a bit tough, and takes a bit of time to get through the whole thing. I LOVED it, and I plan on stocking up on these. I also loved the Vanilla Pear.
They have a variety of raw granolas from which to choose as well. Right now, I’m munching on a bowl of the Cocoa Bliss and it’s really good (I made 1-Minute Almond Milk by blending 1 tablespoon of Artisana’s raw organic almond butter with 1 cup of water). I especially enjoy the texture of the Cocoa Bliss – not too heavy and not too light. (I think the granola from Two Mom’s in the Raw is a bit too heavy and sticky for my preference, while the granola that I usually eat from Go Raw is very light. Kaia Foods’ Cocoa Bliss granola is somewhere in between, and I like it). It’s not overly sweet either, but the cocoa comes through nicely. I want a second bowl. Only a 1/2 cup for a serving? Really? Well, I think I need two servings then… one for me and one for Monkey. ;) That rationale works for me.
I’m partial to raw granola because it can be a quick snack on the run by itself, or a fast meal at home with a raw nut milk. I also tried the Dates & Spice granola which had a good flavor, but the texture of this one was a little too much for me. My bag had a lot of big junks of dehydrated dates with some buckwheat, and the dates were too hard, chewy, and big to eat (for me). Next, I tried the Raisin Cinnamon… ahh… a nice texture. It had a subtle flavor, but still good. If I were shopping for these, I’d probably end up buying the Cocoa Blisson a regular basis, although the Raisin Cinnamon would probably end up in my cart from time to time as well.
I'm Kristen, and welcome to my blog. I'm a wife, mom, author, and I love to eat so food is usually the topic of my blog posts. I'm a former (almost decade long) vegan turned back omnivore who enjoys reading, rebounding, coffee, and dark chocolate. More...