It is day 4 of the sugar-free challenge, so I hope everyone is off to a great start!
Grocery shopping can be worrisome for a lot of challengers because of the confusing labels, etc. It’s important to have food on hand at home and a stocked fridge when hunger hits because an empty fridge makes you a lot more likely to grab something more processed and higher in sugar. Here are some tips to make your next trip a whole lot easier!
Stick to foods that are as close to their original state as possible. Not only is this a healthier, but minimally processed foods tend to be lower in sugar and not have any added sugar. This means fruit, vegetables, grains, meat, nuts, and seeds.
- Meats: chicken breast or whole chicken, ground beef, eggs, deli meats (with no added sugar, watch for words like honey roasted)
- Grains: brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, homemade whole grain breads, pasta, corn tortillas, popcorn
- Fruit: bananas, apples, grapes, mango, and all sorts of fresh/frozen fruit, dried fruit (check for added sugar)
- Vegetables: baby carrots for snacking, sweet potatoes, spinach, etc frozen and fresh, check canned veggies for added sugar.
- Nuts: raw or salted nuts and seeds, all natural peanut butter or almond butter
- Dairy: unsweetened almond milk, yogurt (sugar free), cheeses
- Extra: olive oil, coconut oil, balsamic and red wine vinegar, spices, hummus, olives, herbs, pickles (no sweet pickles!), chia seed, flax seed
Check the Labels
I go into more detail about labeling in this post, but it can hide anywhere! Above are two different brands of hot sauce. One contains sugar and one doesn’t. Always check labels! Not every brand has the same ingredient list.
Same idea with this jelly. Most jellies and jams contain added sugar, but there are varieties that are only fruit-juice sweetened. Check the labels for this. Beware of the label “Sugar-Free Jelly” because this can contain sugar substitutes like splenda and aspartame. Normal peanut butter brands also contains added sugar, so look for all-natural brands or freshly ground. My favorite brand is Smucker’s Natural because it is carried in almost every grocery store and is relatively inexpensive.
Careful of the Middle Aisles
The middle aisles are where all of the foods that do not need refrigeration are, so these are usually very processed. Processed foods are much more likely to have added sugar. Some of the cereals and granola in the picture above look healthy, but are actually very high in sugar. Try making your own granola like this Pumpkin Spice Latte Granola!
The produce aisles are your friend!!
Use spices to liven these foods up. Like cinnamon in oatmeal, smoked paprika and garlic on chicken, dill on potatoes, and basil on pasta.
Have Fun and Shop Locally
This is an awesome opportunity to support your local farmers by buying what is in-season. Fall is great for squash and apples-my favorite!
I went to an apple orchard this weekend and picked buckets of my own fresh apples. Not only are these a tasty afternoon snack with some natural sugars, but I can use them in lots of recipes! Like this no sugar-added apple pie.
While I always love a good trip to the grocery store, I’ve been dreaming about a trip to Paris to try all of their culinary creations. Jasmine from Leisure Jobs notified me of a competition they are holding to win a trip for two to Paris and a Michelin Star Meal! I’ve never been to Europe, and I’ve been wanting to try their famous cuisine. The meal included in the trip may be the most exciting part for me. I would definitely order the escargot in Paris because I have never tried it before and it is very famous there. What would you like to try?
You can enter to win the trip HERE. I’ve already entered, so I wanted to let my lovely readers know about it, too. Good luck!
Do you have any grocery shopping trips? Also, have you ever been to Paris?
This is a sponsored post, but all thoughts and ideas are my own.