4 Simple Tips & Tricks to Stretch Your Fresh Food Dollars

Rachel Druckenmiller, health coach and local blogger

Rachel Druckenmiller, health coach and author of Rachel’s Nourishing Kitchen

We’re pleased to share a cross-post from customer, blogger, and health coach Rachel Druckenmiller’s blog, Rachel’s Nourishing Kitchen. As a wellness consultant and certified health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Rachel uses Hometown Harvest bag ingredients to craft tasty, interesting recipes that are healing and nutritious. Enjoy!

On average, Americans throw away 20 pounds of food waste each month. That amounts to about $2,275 per year for a family of four, according to the USDA.

Bill and I are committed to buying and eating fresh, high quality food, and our weekly delivery from Hometown Harvest makes that really easy! We know it’s money well spent because our health is very important to us. We’d rather pay the farmer now than the doctor later! We also want to make sure we are getting the biggest bang for our buck and want our food to last as long as possible.

Check out 4 of my favorite tips and tricks below 🙂


Rinse your berries in a water/vinegar solution to prolong their life!

Bothered by how quickly berries mold? Mix 3 cups water with 1 cup white vinegar and wash your berries in the solution. Drain them in a colander and rinse them under running water. Then, line a salad spinner with 3 layers of paper towels and spin for 10-15 seconds or until the berries are dry. You can store the berries in a sealable container lined with paper towels, but make sure to keep the lid slightly open so any extra moisture can escape.

Freeze bananas to use in smoothies and dairy-free ice cream

Freeze bananas to use in smoothies and dairy-free ice cream

Are your bananas quickly browning and about to go to waste? Never throw away a banana again! When they start to brown and you don’t think you will get around to eating them before they do, peel them, cut them up into chunks or discs and freeze them! We always keep a bag of frozen bananas in our freezer and put half of one in our smoothies each morning (instant creaminess!) AND use them to make delicious, dairy-free “ice cream” (recipe to come!).

Tired of greens going limp? Cut off the ends and put them in a cup of cold water in the fridge!

Tired of greens going limp? Cut off the ends and put them in a cup of cold water in the fridge!

We eat a lot of leafy green vegetables each week and get a variety of greens from Swiss chard and kale to collards and bok choy in our weekly bag. Doing this has been one of the keys to losing weight and keeping it off. Leafy greens are awesome because they are potent cancer-fighters, reduce inflammation (the root of most disease) and detoxify the body. They are also very cleansing and energizing. We want them to last as long as possible!

The other day, I had some kale in the fridge and hadn’t used it quickly enough, so the leaves had started to wilt and go limp. I cut off about a half inch of the bottom of the stem, put them in a cup of water in the fridge, and in a matter of hours, the greens came back to life! The stem pulls up water into the leaves to rehydrate them. I’ve done this with other veggies like Swiss chard and celery (cut it into sticks and put it in a container of water).

Store your nuts and seeds in the fridge to keep them fresher longer

Store your nuts and seeds in the fridge to keep them fresher longer

We use nuts or seeds of some kind just about every day either in smoothies, salads, snacks or other recipes like these. Because they contain delicate oils that will go rancid (spoil) when exposed to heat, it’s important to keep them cool. We go through them pretty quickly, so we store them in the fridge, but if you buy them in bulk from Hometown Harvest or don’t use them often, store them in your freezer until ready to use. They won’t “freeze” because they have very little water content. We store them in glass containers that we buy really cheaply at Home Goods.

Do you have any favorite money and food-saving tips or tricks? Feel free to share them below!


About racheldruck

I love to cook, and I am passionate about spreading the message of how delicious, simple and nourishing real food can be. Check out my blog for posts on healthy recipes, tips and tricks, and lessons learned on my healthy eating journey! I'm passionate about educating, teaching and equipping you with the skills, tools and inspiration to live a purposeful, energized life! I live in Baltimore with my husband, my college sweetheart, and work as a wellness consultant and health coach. I also teach healthy cooking classes. I love what I do!

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