Sunday, June 30, 2013

The Finances of Eating Gluten Free

Many times in life there are choices to be made and nine times out of ten the choices are based on how financially you will tackle that choice. Buying houses and cars, where to send your kids to college, vacations, etc. Well financially speaking eating gluten free is one of those financial choices too. Granted for health reasons it has to be done, but financially it can be very daunting. Just about everything in the kitchen, pantry, and fridge needs to be readjusted. That costs a lot of money. Buying regular groceries cost a lot these days, add to that the fact of purchasing gluten free this and gluten free that and it will add up very quickly. Now that my family is eating mostly gluten free with me that also adds to the amount of gluten free food roaming around the kitchen. But that is okay because cooking one meal instead of two each night is much less hectic and easier on my brain. Over the past month there have been a few ways of purchasing gluten free food that has made my life easier. The following are choices I made for the beginning of my gluten free journey. Buying packaged food has given me time to do research. Now it is my turn to start creating my own dishes and trying out recipes I have found. In the meantime this is what has kept us afloat:

  • A friend in my community has recently started a small cottage business out of her home. Keep It Simple has kept me sane this first month of my gluten free journey. She sells mixes at very affordable prices as well as some fresh baked goods. Currently I purchase my bread, pizza crust, muffin mix, blondie mix, pancake mix, biscuit mix, and Crazy Good Granola from her. This may change over time as I get more adjusted to the gluten free lifestyle. Buying from Keep It Simple has allowed me time to figure out a list of exactly what my pantry needs. Also I haven't had to spend all the money for the different types of flour to create my own mixes. Seriously most of her mixes range in the $3.00 range which is way less expensive than the grocery store or Amazon. I did find out from her that she yesterday that she can ship mixes if anyone is interested.
  • Buying in bulk from Amazon has also been a blessing. This week I purchased a six pack of snickerdoodle cookies made by Enjoy Life and a four pack variety of crackers from glutino. I currently am also creating wishlist items to purchase from Amazon a few at a time so it is easier on the pocket book.
  • Surprisingly Wal-mart carries my favorite gluten free pasta made by Heartland. Very inexpensive for the gluten free world.
  • Also I am surprised by the amount of gluten free products carried by our local Ingles. Much more than Wal-mart.
Yesterday I spent most of the afternoon looking through gluten free recipes on Pinterest. Seriously what did we all do with our time before Pinterest came about. The saved recipes has also given me an idea of the items I need to purchase for the pantry. So far this is my wish list below that I will purchase a little a time. The one thing I am missing terribly right now is flour tortillas. I really don't care for the brown rice variety so I will be trying my hand at creating my own here very soon.

Blanched Almond Flour
Tapioca flour
Potato starch
Rice Flour
Sweet Rice Flour
Xantham Gum
Powdered Egg Whites
Tortilla press
Food processor

Grand total comes in around 190.00. I can get all of the products from Amazon with free shipping. Any of you gluten free folks out there that have great places to buy products or recipes or advice, please chime in.


Jessica said...

If you can find Sami's Millet Flax lavash bread, you will not miss flour tortillas! They are so very good. Expensive, but great. Sometimes my local health food store has them but I got annoyed that they sold stale bread (it is usually frozen) so I am going to place an order and store some in my deep freezer. Because they come frozen the shipping charge is obscene so I try to share and order with friends. We also love their bread (millet/flax and their millet flax bagels)

Meg said...

I feel your pain! We are not only gluten free, but also dairy and soy. We do tons from Amazon too. It does help. Also, if you have the space, Whole Foods will give a 10% case discount, which is very helpful, too.

For tortillas - we've just switched to corn. We have a couple local tortarillas, so we can get them nice and fresh.

Anonymous said...

Sound a lot like what I'm trying to do with Trim Healthy Mama - I tried serving Quinoa with our meal the other day and hubby hated it although the children and I liked it. It is more costly to eat healthier, which is unfortunate for so many of us. I enjoyed reading this post.

Annette said...

I've never done gluten free so I can't advise you. I wish you the best on your journey though. :)

annette @ A net in time

Michele said...

Wow, shopping and saving is hard already and when you add special needs...I cannot imagine. So glad you have found some places that carry things more accessible! Praying for you on this new journey!

Miranda said...

I am trying to get our house eating healthier. It can definitely put a dent in our grocery budget! At first I was just trying to cut out all the REALLY bad stuff but now I am trying to take that a step further and stay away from additives. EEK! Talk about expensive. That is why I have a big garden this year! :)

Beth said...

We don't have to eat gluten free, but my mom does, so try to have things available for her to eat when she's here. Also, I'm pretty sure we should try to be dairy-free for at least one of my children, if not gluten-free as well. We live in a small town, so it can be hard to find gluten-free products. Our local grocery store doesn't carry anything; I can drive 20 minutes and find a few things; most of the really good stores are an hour's drive. I haven't quite broken down and ordered in bulk from Amazon, but I will definitely consider it!

Anonymous said...

We don't have to be gluten free but sometimes its frustrating how much more healthy choices are when you are trying to stretch the food budget.

JNPmommie said...

We don't need to avoid gluten in our family, but we have started eating organic and all natural. It is a shame that doing the right thing by your body costs more.