Saving Money on Gluten-Free Foods

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There is no doubt that gluten-free foods are more expensive than their gluten-filled counterparts.  If you’ve been gluten-free for more than a week, you are well aware of that.

How can you save money on gluten-free foods?

1.  Eat Naturally Gluten-Free Foods

This may not be the answer you want to hear, but I’m putting it first because it’s the easiest, healthiest, and often most frugal way to eat gluten free.

Shop the perimeter of the grocery store for things like fresh fruits, vegetables, and meat, as well as eggs, milk and cheese (if you can eat those).

Rice and beans are a classic frugal combination.  I recommend rinsing dry or canned beans before eating them.

2.  Shop Around

There are many stores carrying gluten-free products.  My son’s favorite cereal can vary as much as $2 per box depending on the store.

My experience is that independent health food stores tend to be pricey, but they might carry items you can’t find elsewhere.

Chain health food stores such as Trader Joes, Whole Foods, and Mom’s Organic Market tend to have the best prices.

Most regular chain grocery stores carry some gluten-free specialty foods, but prices can vary.  They do sometimes put items on sale.

3.  Shop Online

 
There are a variety of places where you can buy gluten-free foods online.  Even with shipping, it can be cheaper than buying at a store, but you need to compare prices and always include the cost of shipping.

Amazon had good deals on gluten-free food, especially if you use Subscribe & Save where available.  Remember, you can always change when the next delivery will be.

A couple other good choices are iHerb and Nuts.com.

4.  Coupons

Check manufacturer web sites for coupons they may offer.

Janelle from Gluten Freely Frugal has a list of coupons available right now.

5.  Samples

Attending gluten-free or celiac events and vendor fairs can often mean that you come home with product samples.  It usually costs to get into big events, but if the cost is low and the number of vendors attending is high, then you will likely come home with more product than you paid for.

Take time to talk with the vendors and let them know you have difficulty affording gluten-free products.  They need to hear from us on that issue, and they might give you extra samples or coupons.

orange question markHow do you save money on gluten-free foods?




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Comments

  1. Deborah J Austin says:

    I do totally agree with you on this. The cost is horrid. I find sites with free shipping helps, but you need a set price to qualify, but it usually isn’t bad. (Vitacost.com-free shipping with orders over $49.00). They have most everything you need from vitamins to pasta.

  2. I agree with your ways to save money. The first way for me, also, is to buy and consume more fruits and vegetables. Foods that are naturally gluten free are less pricey then the gluten free items. I cook at home and make my own base for creamed soups, etc. It saves on buy canned items as well as are foods that I can consume. I also use corn starch to thicken items or instant mashed potatoes. Lots of ways once you start looking and have the time to cook and to shop.

  3. I agree with all of your points!
    I only recently became involved with a local celiac support group and have gotten great information and coupons. The last meeting was great in that they served a fresh pasta that was just like the old one I remember. It’s called RP’s Pasta. I am not a paid spokesperson, it’s just a great product

    We have several great places to buy GF items locally too. Even Walmart and Super Target are now selling more items. We have an allergen free grocery store also. The more the merrier, because competition helps keep prices in check.

  4. I’ve really gotten stern with myself and have been trying to only shop at my local, small town grocery store. That means my cart is full of naturally gluten-free groceries and not a lot of exotic ingredients or processed gluten-free products. Limiting choices works well for me. Great advice, Linda.

  5. thanks for the tips! we have a few local bulk food stores that have good prices too which is nice. They work well with us and you can buy huge bulk so there’s not accidental gluten or wheat in.

  6. Rebecca Avery says:

    I shop discount stores like Big Lots and often find gluten free products (name brand) for dollars less then what I pay at the store. Pasta, mixes and snacks that when I find I buy lots to stock up on them.

  7. Tip number one is right on the money (if you’ll pardon the pun!) – I love cookies, cakes and goodies as much as the next person… but they are not FOOD. They are treats. If we focused on unadulterated food – it wouldn’t cost more… I’d spend the extra on better quality real food (like organic eggs, meat & vegetables). Great post… Grazie mille!

  8. I also make my own baked goods, when I can. It cost more up front to buy the ingredients, but we don’t have to worry about cross contamination from other allergens that we are concerned with. Plus, it just tastes WAY better.

  9. I agree..eating naturally gluten free is the best way to save money! Unfortunately, when kids are diagnosed it is difficult to stick with those foods that are naturally free from gluten. After my 9 yr old son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease in October of 2011, it became my mission to offer gluten free food products at the very lowest prices possible. My son and I share the Celiac burden and so I have lived with the expense of buying gluten free foods that are extremely over priced. Well..this is not the case any longer. I have launched a new web site that caters to Celiacs and is aimed at providing not only hunderds of great gluten free products at the lowest prices around but also meal planning, recipes, and lunch box suggestions for kids suffering from celiac as well. Stop by and visit http://GlutenFreeDelivers.com..PS: $1 from every order placed on our site is donated to the Junvenile Diabetes Research Foundation!

  10. I just started a week ago on gluten free and dairy free it has been hard shopping and finding different things to eat and price of the food is crazy I half to do this diet for health reasons it makes me feel overwhelmed trying to budget for my self to eat for months to come.

    • The best way to save is to eat foods that are naturally gluten free and to cook/bake from scratch. High prices specialty food aren’t necessary for every day. Just save them for special treats.

  11. Gina, I looked at your website and your prices are much higher then Whole Foods, and even higher than our local very expensive Fresh Market.

    I think the subject of the conversation was to come up with cheaper alternatives and substitutes.

    I have a family of 10 and we would have to sell our home to stay gluten free if we spent that much on food.

    One way we have changed is we use corn tortillas for wrapping PB and J’s, burritos, and our very loved chicken breast wraps with spinach and avocado with my home canned salsa.. very filling meal…

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