Grocery Shopping for Two for only $50 per Week!

IMG_20140821_123409_496That’s right! Only $50 per week, and that’s for two people. Now, when I say $50 a week, that’s an average. Some weeks might be a little higher, depending on what kind of meat you buy. Some weeks might be a little lower if stores are having really great sales (or if you have good coupons). But, overall, you can eat healthy for about $50 per week!

My boyfriend and I have recently moved in together, and for a few weeks, neither of us had a paycheck coming in. It was scary, but we are really good at budgeting our money. I really like to eat healthy, so I was worried about our grocery bills. But I had no reason to worry! We can eat great food and still pay all the bills! All it takes is a little planning, some extra time to find coupons, and a few adjustments to your regular purchases. You might have to compromise once in a while to save money, but in the end, it’s definitely worth it to be able to keep some money in the bank.

Here are some tips that will really help you save money on your grocery bill:

Plan out your meals for the entire week.

Choose one day per week to do your grocery shopping, and plan out all the meals you’ll need for that week. I like to write down each day and list what meals we’ll need, keeping in mind that I might change them based on sales or coupons I have. This is better than running to the store every few days to grab a few things. Not only does that waste time, but it will also waste gas, and you’ll probably be in a hurry, so you won’t take the time to find sales or coupons.

I also allow two or three days each week for leftovers. Chances are, when you’re only cooking for two, you’ll have a lot of leftover meals or ingredients to use throughout the week. Consider taking leftovers in your lunch or using the leftover ingredients to make a different meal. My boyfriend likes to combine leftovers with noodles and make a pasta dish.

Take your own lunch to work.

Don’t go to a restaurant every day for lunch. Even if you only spend $5 per day, that’s $25 per week (for a 5 day work week), which is $1300 per year! Plan to only go out to lunch once or twice a month, and see how much money you’ll be saving. When you really think about it, packing your lunch makes way more sense.

Read the grocery store sale ad.

You can find most sale ads online, at the store, or in the mail. Some stores even have an app that makes it really easy to find what they have on sale each week. Once you see what’s on sale, you can tailor your meals and you shopping list to what will save you more money. But remember, just because it’s on sale doesn’t mean you have to buy it! Not all sales are great deals.

Make a list of all the things you need, and stick to it.

Once you’ve planned all your meals, think about what you’ll need to make all of them. Write them on a list. Don’t forget basic weekly needs like eggs, milk, and butter. Once you’re at the store, only buy the things on your list. It can be tempting to pick up a few extra things that you didn’t plan for, but each one of those little purchases will add up. Stick to your list!

Use a store rewards card.

If you shop at a grocery store that has a rewards program, take advantage of it! I do most of my shopping at Kroger, and they have a rewards card that allows me to save money in the store, use digital coupons, and accumulate fuel points to save on gas. If your favorite store doesn’t have a rewards card, no problem. You can still save lots of money without a card.

Use coupons.

Whether you prefer digital coupons, paper coupons, or printable coupons online, use them! However, don’t think you need to use good coupons just because you have them. If you won’t use something, or you don’t need something, don’t bother using the coupon. Also, don’t forget to read the fine print. Some coupons only save you money if you buy multiple items. Don’t be fooled. What good is saving a dollar if you have to buy two extra things you don’t really need?

Don’t be afraid to try the store brands.

I almost never buy name brand items unless they are on sale and I have a good coupon. So far, almost every store brand item I’ve purchased has been just as good (if not better) than the name brand! Some store brand foods are almost identical, and they can be about half the price! If you’re skeptical of trying store brands, just try one item per week. That way, if you don’t like it, you didn’t waste very much money. 

Look for reduced-price items at the store.

Most stores will have items marked down that are about to reach their sell-by dates. It doesn’t mean these items are expired or gross; it just means the stores can’t sell them anymore after that date. One day, we got a perfectly good loaf of bread for only 40¢! You can get meat that’s marked down and simply put it in the freezer or cook it up that day and use it for dinner. Just store things in the fridge, like bread, fruits, vegetables, and anything else that goes bad quickly. The fridge is the best place to keep things from going bad too quickly.

Don’t be afraid to splurge a little.

Like I said earlier, some weeks you’ll spend more than $50, but some weeks you’ll spend less. You’ll have to give up seafood, steak, and fancy cheeses some weeks, but don’t be afraid to treat yourself once in a while. Just this week, my boyfriend and I got some shrimp, but it was totally worth the extra money. Once in a while, it’s ok to splurge! 

I hope these tips help you out. Let me know in the comments where you like to get your coupons, what stores have the best sales, and where I can get cheap groceries. I’m always looking for the best deals!

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Can I Flax for You??

IMG_20140119_111932_913

I love flexing, and I love flaxseed! So can I flax for you?

Flaxseed is amazing. I eat it every day, and I love it! It has tons of health benefits, it’s not very expensive, and it doesn’t go rotten. You’d think since it’s such a healthy whole food, it would be crazy expensive, go bad within a week, and be really difficult to find at the store, but that’s not the case!

I buy my flaxseed at Walmart for about $3 per bag, which lasts me months depending on how many recipes I make that call for flaxseed. I buy Bob’s Red Mill whole ground flaxseed meal. It’s certified gluten-free, has no preservatives, and has no chemical additives. Ok, enough about the product itself… 

Let’s talk about all those health benefits!

  • It can reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes. According to WebMD, flaxseed’s omega-3 essential fatty acids, lignans, and fiber are three components that make flaxseed so healthy.
  • It can reduce inflammation from illnesses. Again, WebMD says it can decrease inflammatory reactions caused by asthma attacks, plaque buildup in the arteries, and Parkinson’s disease.
  • It can cut hot flashes by half! This doesn’t really affect me yet, since I’m only 22, but menopausal women who ate 2 tablespoons of flaxseed each day for two weeks had half as many hot flashes as those who didn’t, says WebMD.
  • It has antioxidant benefits. According to The World’s Healthiest Foods, flaxseed is a good source of manganese, which wards off oxidative stress in the body.  Oxidative stress can initiate cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, cataracts, diabetes, kidney disease, and arthritis, says The Atlantic.
  • It has been shown to increase HDL (good) cholesterol and regulate blood pressure, according to The World’s Healthiest Foods.
  • It can reduce your risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer, and colon cancer. The World’s Healthiest Foods explains that this is due to the high lignan content in flaxseed.
  • It is a great source of fiber. One serving of 2 tablespoons has 4 grams of fiber; that’s 16% of your daily value just from 2 little tablespoons of flaxseed!

Now, you’re probably thinking, “Ok so this flaxseed stuff is good for me, but how the heck do I eat it?” There are lots of ways to eat it, and there are TONS of recipes online. You can add it to almost anything. The bag says it has a nutty flavor and great taste, but I’ve never noticed it having a taste. Even when I put a lot of it in my oatmeal, I can’t taste it, so feel free to mix it in almost anything.

Here are some common ways to use it:

  • Stir it in your oatmeal, yogurt, pudding, cereal, spaghetti sauce, or soup.
  • Add it to your casseroles, meatloaf, baked goods, meatballs, and smoothies.
  • Add it to your pancake or waffle batter, cookie dough, muffin batter or bread dough.
  • Sprinkle it on your peanut butter and jelly sandwich, pizza, toast, or tacos.
  • Substitute it for an egg. Simply mix 1 tablespoon of flaxseed meal with 3 tablespoons of water and let it sit for a couple minutes. Then, just use it like you would use an egg!
  • Choose ground flaxseed instead of whole flaxseed. If you eat them whole, they will pass through your digestive system whole, so you won’t get the maximum health benefits.
  • Store it in the fridge or freezer to keep it fresh and maintain all of its health benefits.

So, tell me in the comments below, what’s your favorite way to eat flaxseed?

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How to Eat Clean in a College Dorm

clean dorm food

Here’s the food I have in my dorm room!

Like I’ve said many times before, eating clean can be very challenging. Even at home with a full kitchen, a stove, a refrigerator, a kitchen sink, a dishwasher, a microwave, pots and pans, countless dishes, a toaster, a slow-cooker, a tea kettle, a toaster oven, a coffee pot, a blender, a food processor, a freezer, and a fully-fully stocked pantry, eating clean can be hard. So, as one can assume, eating in a college dorm room is 1000 times harder since students are lucky to have even a few of these items listed previously.

I’m a senior in college this year, and I think I’ve finally figured out how to eat clean in my college dorm room. I have a full meal plan, but since I prefer to eat 6 or 7 small meals a day, I usually eat very small meals in the cafeteria. This leaves me hungry every couple hours, so snacking is a must! This post won’t focus on how to choose clean foods in the cafeteria, but rather how to eat clean in your dorm room.

Here’s what I have in my dorm room that I find useful:

  • Mini-fridge
  • Microwave
  • 2-cup food processor
  • Microwave popcorn cooker
  • Measuring cups/spoons (only 1 cup, 1/2 cup, 1/8 cup, 1 Tbs.)
  • Manual can opener
  • Silverware (3 spoons, 3 knives, 3 forks)
  • Microwave safe plates and bowls
  • Cups
  • Coffee mug
  • Mini cutting board
  • Chip clips
  • Water bottle
  • Travel coffee mug
  • Citrus peeler

You don’t need all of these things. You could get away with just a few basics, but I wanted to let all of you know what I have. We’re not allowed to have toasters, slow cookers, or any other type of heating device. We don’t have a kitchen sink (but we do have a bathroom) or access to an oven/stove.

Some important things to keep in mind when buying clean food for your dorm:

  • Not all processed food is bad (even though most of it is), so read all the labels to see what foods have only clean ingredients.
  • Don’t buy any perishable food in bulk unless you’re positive you can eat it all before it goes bad.
  • Unless you’re wealthy, don’t buy food that is expensive (stick to a college budget!).
  • Buy food that is non-perishable or that lasts a long time before it goes bad.
  • Try to incorporate all food groups in your snacks.
  • Foods that are easy to take along are always good!
  • When buying produce, choose fruits and veggies that don’t go rotten too quickly.
  • If you have a meal plan, take fruit from the cafeteria and bring it back to your dorm for later.

Here are some quick, easy snack foods that I have in my room:

  • Unsweetened almond milk (I probably won’t buy more for a while because I can’t drink it all before it goes bad)
  • Plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • Celery
  • Radishes
  • Oats
  • Flaxseed
  • Raisins
  • Popcorn kernels (NOT microwave popcorn bags!)
  • Triscuits
  • Salsa (no weird ingredients or sugar!)
  • Rice cakes (lightly salted)
  • All natural peanut butter
  • Frozen berries
  • Canned green beans
  • Canned black beans
  • Decaf black tea
  • All natural protein powder
  • Cinnamon
  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Walnuts
  • Pistachios
  • LaCroix flavored waters (no artificial sweeteners)

Here are some other clean snack foods you can try:

  • Pretzels (NO enriched flour, only unbleached whole wheat flour)
  • Carrots (canned or fresh)
  • Almonds
  • Edamame
  • Peaches
  • Canned peas
  • Canned spinach
  • Canned garbanzo beans
  • Hummus (clean ingredients only)
  • Guacamole (clean ingredients only)
  • Canned tuna (in water)
  • Dates
  • Canned fruit ( in 100% fruit juice)
  • Sweet potatoes
  • All natural nut butters
  • Oranges

Hopefully these tips help you when trying to eat clean in your dorm room this semester! I’m back at school as of yesterday, so I’ll be posting tons of dorm-friendly recipes in the future!

How to Choose a Healthy Breakfast Cereal

healthy cereal

We’ve all been there: walking down the cereal aisle at the grocery store wondering what kind of cereal is healthy and which ones just pretend to be good for us. You pass by all the sugary kid cereals… Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cookie Crisp, Trix.

You head for the healthy-sounding boxes, but as you look at the ingredients list, you notice that most cereals (even “healthy” ones) have tons of sugar, additives, and processed junk! So should you just say forget it to all breakfast cereals? Not necessarily. I love cereal way too much to banish it from my diet.

Follow this how-to guide to help you choose a clean breakfast cereal!

Rule #1: Ignore the healthy-sounding titles.

Many cereals have titles that sound like they’re good for you, but they’re not. Fiber Plus, Special K, and Honey Bunches of Oats are prime examples of cereal that seems healthy but has additives and sugar.

Rule #2: Read the ingredients list thoroughly.

If the ingredients label is a mile long, don’t even bother reading it. If there aren’t too many ingredients, read through the entire list. If there are any unfamiliar words, long unpronounceable additives, or confusing chemicals, put it back on the shelf.

Rule #3: Be on the lookout for disguised ingredients.

Many cereals have additives that can be called different things. Companies try to trick you by using other words that sound less threatening. For example, cane sugar or cane syrup is the same as sugar. Corn syrup or fructose is processed sugar. Enriched flour means it has been bleached and processed. Artificial flavor means there is fake flavor. Glycerin is a sweet syrup that’s also used in beauty products. Gross!

Rule #4: Look for clean words in the ingredients.

Make sure the cereal specifies that it’s whole grain. Most will say whole grain wheat, bran, or barley. Really, that’s the only ingredient cereals need. If the cereal has sweeteners, make sure they’re all natural, like honey, molasses, or dried fruit.

Rule #5: Be patient and persistent.

I’ve searched high and low for clean breakfast cereals, and I’ve only been able to find a few. I shop at chain stores (Meijer and Wal-Mart), and it’s really hard to find any clean cereals on the shelves. You have to be patient and read lots of labels, and you have to do a lot of searching, but it’s worth it to make sure your body is healthy.

My favorite cereal right now is Post’s Shredded Wheat’n Bran, so if you’re having trouble finding a clean cereal, try it! I add sliced bananas or strawberries to enhance the flavor and naturally sweeten it up!

10 Foods That Sound Healthy But Aren’t

Advertising can be misleading when it comes to buying healthy food. Companies label and market their products as being low-calorie, low-fat, sugar-free, low-sugar, reduced sodium, all natural, and organic, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re good for you. Here are 10 foods that sound healthy, but in reality, can do more harm than good.

Nutella

So many people think Nutella is healthy, but I don’t know why! The first ingredient on the label is sugar, followed by palm oil, and then hazelnuts. With 21 grams of sugar in two tablespoons, you might as well go eat a Snickers candy bar; there are 26 grams of sugar in the whole thing!

Reduced Fat Peanut Butter

The words “reduced fat” sound healthy, but don’t let them trick you. Peanut butter is an excellent source of healthy fats, so taking the fat away isn’t good. In its place, companies add processed fillers like corn syrup and vegetable oils.

Frozen Diet Meals

This includes Lean Cuisine, Healthy Choice, Lean Pockets, Smart Ones, and many others. While these meals offer portion control and limited calories, they lack almost everything else. They are packed with additives, chemicals, preservatives, and processed and modified ingredients. And don’t forget, you’ll be hungry 20 minutes after eating one of these meals, so why bother?

Sports Drinks

Gatorade, Propel, and Powerade are just a few. Sports drinks are loaded with sugars, processed ingredients, and additives. In just one bottle of Powerade, you’ll guzzle down 56 grams of sugar. That’s about the same as if you ate 14 Oreo cookies!

Sugar Free Drinks

This includes diet pop, flavored waters, and drink mixes. While these drinks don’t have any sugar, they have lots of artificial sweeteners instead. Also included in these drinks are acids, preservatives, and artificial flavors and colors. Sounds delicious, right?

V8

Don’t go thinking that V8 is as bad for you as everything else on this list; it’s not. But, it’s definitely not as good for you as it seems. The first word on the ingredient label is “reconstituted.” As you keep reading, you’ll see the words “concentrated” and “acid.” This is obviously a very processed food, and many of the beneficial nutrients in the vegetable juice are destroyed during processing anyway. So, you could’ve had a V8, or you could just eat raw veggies.

Canned Soups

Soup companies are geniuses when it comes to making their products look healthy. The cans are full of pictures of lean protein, veggies, and spices, misleading consumers. What’s really in that can of soup? Lots of sodium, extracts, acids, and other additives. Try making your own soup instead.

So-Called “Healthy” Cereals

There are so many cereals that call themselves healthy, I can’t possibly list them all. A few popular brands are Special K, FiberOne, Mini-Wheats, and Raisin Bran. These cereals all seem healthy until you take a closer look at the ingredients labels. They all contain sugar, syrups, flavorings, and other additives. Be careful, and read labels closely.

Baked Potato Chips

Just because they aren’t fried doesn’t mean they’re any better for you! The ingredients label for Lay’s Original Baked! Chips includes dried potatoes, sugar, so lecithin, and corn sugar. Gross! Don’t think substituting baked chips is any better for you than regular potato chips.

Chex Mix

Sure, the bag says it’s got 60% less fat than regular potato chips. So? Apparently that means they can fill their product with vegetable oil, sugar, added colors, flavors, syrups, and acids instead. The ingredients list for Traditional Chex Mix is a mile long.

Granola Bars Exposed

cherry-almond-lara-bars

In today’s world, we’re constantly on the go. We’re always in a hurry, whether driving to work, running to appointments, catching a bus, walking to class, or rushing to the gym. Sometimes, we don’t have time to fit in a meal, so we reach for a quick snack we can eat on the go. Many times, we reach for a granola bar. But should we?

There’s nothing wrong with needing some convenience food once in a while, but we need to be extra careful of what kind of granola bars we’re buying. Almost all the kinds at my local Wal-Mart are loaded with sugar, preservatives, chemicals, additives, corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, and other things I don’t think I want to put in my body.

I made a trip to my Wal-Mart today to do some research on what kinds of granola bars are actually healthy. I knew it would be a challenge to find clean, healthy bars, but I never would have guessed how unhealthy most are! I took it upon myself to dig deep and uncover the secrets of the nutrition labels.

I decided to examine 10 different kinds of granola bars, nutrition bars, and fruit & nut bars that are supposedly healthy. They are all located in the “healthy” section in the cereal aisle at my Wal-Mart. Keep in mind that all the prices are based on Wal-Mart.

To find their healthiness scores, I graded each of the 10 brands of granola bars on four criteria: number of ingredients, fiber content, protein content, and number of essential nutrients. I weighted the grade for number of ingredients by three, since eating whole foods is most important when eating clean.

For example, Kind fruit & nut bars have 12 ingredients, earning an 81%. Kind bars have 3g of fiber, 4g of protein, and 16 essential nutrients. This earns it an 80%,70%, and 90% respectively. To find the final healthiness score, I multiplied .81(3) + .80 + .70 + .90 = 80.5 to get a grade of 81% (rounded).

Finally, the results are in! Here are the 10 “healthy” granola bars I researched, listed in order from highest to lowest healthiness score.

83%Larabar Apple Pie Fruit & Nut Bar

  • 6 Ingredients
  • 4g fiber, 4g protein, 3 essential nutrients
  • $5.28 for a box of 5

82%Cascadian Farm Crunchy Oats & Honey Granola Bar

  • 7 Ingredients
  • 3g fiber, 4g protein, 1 essential nutrient
  • $2.98 for a box of 5

81%Kind Cranberry Almond Fruit & Nut Bar

  • 12 Ingredients
  • 3g fiber, 4g protein, 16 essential nutrients
  • $4.74 for a box of 4

75%Clif Oatmeal Raisin Walnut Energy Bar

  • 28 Ingredients
  • 5g fiber, 10g protein, 23 essential nutrients
  • $5.58 for a box of 6

74%Glenny’s Cranberry & Almond Whole Fruit & Nut Bar

  • 14 Ingredients
  • 2g fiber, 4g protein, 2 essential nutrients
  • $3.68 for a box of 5

72%Nature’s Path Pumpkin-N-Spice Chewy Granola Bar

  • 15 Ingredients
  • 2g fiber, 3g protein, 2 essential nutrients
  • $2.68 for a box of 5

71%Clif Crunch Honey Oat Granola Bar

  • 16 Ingredients
  • 3g fiber, 3g protein, 2 essential nutrients
  • $2.98 for a box of 5

63% (tie) – Kashi Trail Mix Chewy Granola Bar

  • 36 Ingredients
  • 4g fiber, 6g protein, 1 essential nutrient
  • $2.98 for a box of 12

63% (tie)- ZonePerfect Chocolate Almond Raisin Nutrition Bar

  • 38 Ingredients
  • 1g fiber, 15g protein, 19 essential nutrients
  • $4.77 for a box of 5

59%Life Choice Double Peanut Wellness Nutrition Bar

  • 53 Ingredients
  • 5g fiber, 14g protein, 18 essential nutrients
  • $ 3.68 for a box of 5

In short, the winner is… Larabar Apple Pie Fruit & Nut Bar! To be honest with all you readers, Larabars are probably the only granola bars I’d eat off this entire list. They’re the only bars I could find that didn’t have any added ingredients, added sugar, chemicals, or big words I couldn’t pronounce. Some of the others shouldn’t even be considered food.

The only problem is, Larabars aren’t cheap. $5.28 for a box of 5!? So, if you’re looking for a way to save money, try making your own! I stumbled upon a list of sites with recipes for homemade Larabars. I’ll try making some and let you know how it goes. Happy snacking!

If you liked this article, you’ll love reading Peanut Butter Exposed!

Almond Milk vs. Skim Milk

After falling madly in love with almond milk, I wondered, is almond milk really better, or do I just like it more because of the taste? See, I don’t really like the taste of regular milk, nor how thin skim milk is. Even though I only drink the original unflavored original almond milk, I love the taste and the consistency. I haven’t taken a sip of skim milk since discovering my love for almond milk, but I still feel like I should compare the two before I completely eliminate skim milk from my diet.

I’ll compare the two milks based on many criteria, so you readers can decide for yourselves which criteria are most important to you personally. I won’t say if one is better than the other, but solely give you the facts so you can choose for yourself which things are most important to you.

I buy my milk at Wal-Mart, so all pricing is based on their store. I’ll compare Silk PureAlmond Milk with Wal-Mart’s skim milk. The criteria I’ll cover include taste, price, ingredients, nutrition, storage, versatility, and availability/convenience.

Price:

(for a half gallon)

  • Almond: $ 3.32
  • Skim: $1.98

That’s a difference of $1.34 per half gallon (which can add up quick depending on how much milk you go through).

Ingredients:

  • Almond: 7 (filtered water, almonds, sea salt, bean gum, sunflower lecithin, gellan gum, natural flavor)
  • Skim: 3 (nonfat milk, vitamin A palmitate, vitamin D3)

Nutrition:

Almond

Almond Milk Label

Skim

Skim Milk Label

Almond milk has more calcium, fat, riboflavin, iron, vitamin E, vitamin B12, zinc, and magnesium than skim milk.

Skim milk has more protein, potassium, vitamin C, calories, sugar, and carbs than almond milk.

Almond and skim milk have the same amount of vitamin A and vitamin D.

Storage:

Almond milk stays fresh 7-10 days after opening.

Skim milk stays good until date on container (usually 2-3 weeks).

Versatility:

Both have same uses and can be used in recipes.

Availability/Convenience:

Almond milk is only found in grocery stores or health stores and there are no store brands at a cheaper price. You can occasionally find a coupon online.

Skim milk can be found in any grocery store, gas station, or convenience store and can be purchased at a lower-priced store brand in most cases. Skim milk also goes on sale more often than almond milk.

Choose your most important criteria to see whether almond milk or skim milk meets your needs best!

Peanut Butter Exposed

Peanut Butter

Peanut butter is good for you, right? Not necessarily. Peanut butter is full of healthy fats and protein, but most kinds have added sugars, oils, and salt.

I love peanut butter. LOVE it. I’d live off the stuff if I wouldn’t die from malnutrition. I eat peanut butter like it’s going out of style, and I’d marry it if I could.

But, a few months ago, I realized that almost all the peanut butters at the store, even all natural and organic brands, have more ingredients than just peanuts. Desperate to get to the bottom of peanut butter’s dirty little secret, I did some digging to find out which kinds are healthiest and which ones won’t break the bank.

I went to Meijer today, and took notes over all 11 different brands of peanut butters labeled “all natural” or “organic.” I probably looked like a crazy person standing in the aisle for a good 15 minutes with a little notebook writing down all the brands, prices, and ingredients, but it was worth it to find out which peanut butter is best for eating clean.

I graded each peanut butter on two criteria for a healthiness score: number of ingredients and NuVal score. (The NuVal System measures the nutritional quality of foods and scores them from 0 to 100). The fewer ingredients, the higher the grade. The higher the NuVal score, the higher the grade. I weighted the grade for ingredients twice as much as the NuVal Score since clean eating is all about eating whole foods.

For example, Skippy Natural Peanut Butter has four ingredients, earning it a 70%. It has a NuVal score of 16/100, or 16%. To calculate Skippy’s final grade, I added 2(0.7) + 0.16 = 1.56, and then divided 1.56/3 = 0.52 or 52%.

Below is a list (from highest to lowest healthiness score) of the 11 kinds of natural or organic peanut butter I found at Meijer. Just a reminder that these prices are based on Meijer’s regular pricing and might be different depending on stores or sales.

And finally, the results you’ve been waiting for!

83% Krema Natural Peanut Butter

  • 1 Ingredient (peanuts)
  • NuVal Score: 49
  • Price: $3.49

75% Meijer Natural Peanut Butter

  • 1 Ingredient (roasted peanuts)
  • NuVal Score: 24
  • Price: $2.99

67% Smucker’s Natural Peanut Butter

  • 2 Ingredients (peanuts, salt)
  • NuVal Score: 22
  • Price: $3.29

54% Planter’s Natural Peanut Butter

  • 4 Ingredients (roasted peanuts, sugar, palm oil, salt)
  • NuVal Score: 23
  • Price: $2.69

54% MaraNatha Organic Peanut Butter

  • 4 Ingredients (dry roasted organic peanuts, organic palm oil, organic unrefined cane sugar, sea salt)
  • NuVal Score: 23
  • Price: $5.99

53% Peter Pan 100% Natural Peanut Butter

  • 4 Ingredients (roasted peanuts, sugar, fractionated palm oil, salt)
  • NuVal Score: 18
  • Price: $2.79

53% Meijer Organic Peanut Butter

  • 4 Ingredients (dry roasted organic peanuts, organic palm oil, organic pure cane sugar, sea salt)
  • NuVal Score: 18
  • Price: $3.99

52% Skippy Natural Peanut Butter

  • 4 Ingredients (roasted peanuts, sugar, palm oil, salt)
  • NuVal Score: 16
  • Price: $3.19

48% Smart Balance All Natural Rich Roast Peanut Butter

  • 5 Ingredients (peanuts, dried cane syrup, natural oil blend, salt, molasses)
  • NuVal Score: 25
  • Price: $3.49

47% Jif Natural Peanut Butter

  • 5 Ingredients (peanuts, sugar, palm oil, salt, molasses)
  • NuVal Score: 20
  • Price: $2.99

41% Simply Jif Peanut Butter

  • 6 Ingredients (peanuts, fully hydrogenated vegetable oil, mono & diglycerides, molasses, sugar, salt)
  • NuVal Score: 23
  • Price: $2.99

To sum up, if you’re looking for the healthiest peanut butter for clean eating, Krema takes the cake! Scoring 83%, this peanut butter knocks the others out of the water. Simply Jif is the least healthy on this list.

If you’re looking for the lowest price on natural peanut butter, Planter’s is for you! It only beats the others by a few quarters, but it can add up. Avoid MaraNatha if you’re on a budget; $5.99 a jar is a bit pricey.

Now that you’ve got the real facts, you can make a wise choice about your peanut butter. The lesson of the story is, always read the ingredients label. I can’t stress that enough. And now that I’ve got you craving peanut butter, go have a spoonful or two!