An Honest Review Of Organic Gatorade

Organic Gatorade. One might think such a thing is odd, saying that Gatorade itself is a pointless beverage. Unless you are spending hours in the sun or doing vigorous exercise for long periods of time, it will in no way benefit you at all. And even then, Gatorade is mostly just flavored salty sugar-water, I can add sugar and salt to my own water at home, tyvm.

lemon gatorade
Ingredients: Water, Sugar, Salt, Citric Acid. In other words, salty sugar water with a few drops of lemon.

This weird surge of Organic Junk Food baffles me, because like Gatorade, I have also seen Organic candy bars, Organic soda, Organic juice pouches, and other junk foods that leap into the term Organic. Organic is meant to be a term in which people believe that synthetic chemicals and whatnot sprayed on food, as well as GMOs, are bad for you, and if you switch to organic you can be healthy. What is the purpose of even buying Organic if you can consume yourself into a “healthier” version of Type 2 Diabetes and Obesity? Even Pro-Organic websites tend to be against the rise of Organic Junk Foods.

For instance, despite the fact that this version of Gatorade is “Organic,” it still contains the same amount of sugar as regular Gatorade per ounce. Since there is no fiber or any other nutrient in Gatorade either, you might as well just drink soda pop. The product itself is clear, which is quite different than the odd colored liquid sugar that Gatorade often sells, but just removing artificial sugars does not make junk healthy.

I bought the lemon flavored to give it a try. And I might try out the mixed berry one soon as well, and when I say “bought,” I mean I got it for free using sales and coupons at my nearby Kroger. I would never spend a dime on any more expensive product that claims to be healthier simply due to being organic. And that is just the issue I have with this. Check this out:

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Regular Gatorade has a retail price of 1.49 for a 32 Fl Oz bottle, which equates to about 4.5 cents per ounce. Meanwhile, the Organic version has only 16.9 Fl Oz, and sells on retail for 2.49. That equates to about 14.7 cents per fluid oz. Meaning that you are spending over 3 times more for Organic sugar water with some salt and a splash of lemon than you are spending on regular Gatorade. Since you will be buying a lot at once, I highly recommend just using that money and simply purchasing conventional vegetables.

The one and only thing I can give it as a Kudos, is that it DOES taste better than the original. But it is not a taste I cannot replicate at home with a lemon, some sugar, and a pinch of salt. In fact, add Splenda, make it Calorie Free. It’s just not worth the money to go out and buy this product, just because you think that organic can do no wrong. Brands like Gatorade making Organic products simply cements the fact that “Organic” is simply a marketing buzzword. Need I remind anyone that Organic is a multi Billion dollar industry, and often make their money off of fraudulent ads against the competition? The entire idea of the organics buzzword is to sell products by making their competition out to be unhealthy by comparison.

There really isn’t too much to say about the organic Gatorade. It’s not bad, but I would never spend money on it, let alone MORE money on it than I would regular Gatorade if I drank the stuff. It’s simply an OK beverage, and not worth paying up to 3 times the price for. For most consumers, water works just as well, and is far cheaper. Need electrolytes? Add some sugar and salt to that water.

Cheap Lemonade Recipe and How I got Free Toothpaste!

LemonadeThe lemonade is a recipe that I use to get cheap limeade for near free. I went to my local Kroger awhile back and bought 2 big bottles of Lime Juice for a dollar each. Each bottle can make gallons upon gallons of Limeade, and I have been able to make at LEAST 4 gallons of limeade from a single 15 oz bottle of lime juice. So a single cup is basically free because it costs so little to make.

I do put Splenda in it, which my store brand Apriva is 2.00 for 100, or 2 cents a packet. So for me, each cup of limeade is about 6-8 cents. Less because I get a lot of Splenda from my local Taco Bell. Very simple recipe, and allows you to save tons of money every year on drinks, especially if you buy soda canned.

But that’s not the only thing that I got for basically free. Kroger, and Food4Less to be precise, is having a dead on Crest Toothpaste, which you can buy then 10 for 10. Combined with this is a Ecoupon from at least MY Food4Less in Chicago, for which you can get the same toothpaste for 1.00 off. This makes the toothpaste FREE… except for taxes. The taxes on stuff like Toothpaste is enormous, at 7 cents per dollar, but hey, I only paid 14 cents total for TWO 4.6 oz tubes of crest toothpaste.

 

Tomorrow I have a 2 week grocery haul for only about 30-40 dollars. Using deals, discounts, and coupons, I wish to save about 50% on my entire grocery bill, which would otherwise be 70-80 dollars. I still have 2 loaves of bread from when I bought them last month because I bought them for 50 cents on discount and then froze them. Anything that I can do to shrink the grocery bill.

Spending near-nothing on groceries is easy if you can do it right.

6 Ways Of Saving Money While Shopping

Lately, I have had to make due with stretching a 20 dollar bill as tight as I can, last month only spending about 70 dollars on shopping for two people, including toilet paper, razors, and other necessities that I need. So there are certain things that I have to do to make sure that I have enough stuff to last us by saving money:

1. Shop Generic

Unless you have a coupon or a store deal that makes the price of the name-brand item cost less than the store brand product, just purchase the generic brand. In many cases, even with a coupon, it was always cheaper to buy the store brand products. At the Food4Less where I shop, I can buy name-brand pasta for 1.50 a box, or store-brand for 89 cents a box. Why spend extra for the same product?

2. Shop Sales

Do NOT ignore sales if you have the money, in many cases store sales can save you TONS in the long-run! A few months ago they had a sale where Creamette pasta was a dollar per box, PLUS if you bought 6 you saved 3 dollars, so each box of pasta was 50 cents each, so I stocked up on pasta, and STILL have much of that Pasta.

3. Shop Discounts

Just the other day at my local Food4Less several boxes of microwavable breakfast sausage, valued at 3 dollars a box, was about to pass their Freeze-by date, so each box was discounted to 50 cents a box. I bought 8 of them, that’s a 20 dollar savings right there! I have been able to buy wheat bread at 50 cents a loaf, fruit for 1$ a pack of 4 or 5 slightly bruised apples, and even meat!

Most of the time, unless I REALLY need it, if it is not discounted or on sale, I don’t buy it. I also buy based on weight. If there is 30 oz of frozen chicken tenders for 6.99, I will buy that over 20 oz of discounted chicken breast for 5.50. I just get more food for less money per oz.

4. Shop Shops!

Most food items I buy are at Food4Less, but if I ever wanted to buy a particular product for cheaper, I can check out other stores in my area, such as Dollar General for Powerade, Gatorade, or Razors, which are much cheaper there than at Food4Less. Dollar Tree has some awesome deals as well, but it is sometimes MORE expensive at Dollar Tree than it would be at another store. Luckily I have a variety of stores to choose from, so I can get a lot of really cheap goods.

For me, buying food is almost exclusively done at Food4Less, while razors and can openers and anything else I need is done at Dollar General and Dollar Tree.

5. Buy in Bulk

Buying in bulk saves you money in the long-run. Yes, you can buy Apriva, store-brand Splenda, for like, 1.49 for 100 packs, but the 200 pack is 2.79, which is a 21 cent discount and it lasts longer. If you have the extra dollar, buying in bulk is definitely better than buying individually. Or if there is a sale where something is extremely cheap, buy a LOT of the so you don’t have to buy more later.

6. Use Coupons!

ONLY use coupons on items that you will actually use! Otherwise you are just wasting money, not saving it! What’s even better is if you combine coupons with sales or store coupons. Let’s say Powerade is 89 cents, and Buy 1 Get 1 Free at the store. Making each bottle 45 cents each. If you had a manufacrer coupon for 30 cents off, each bottle would only be 30 cents. 30 cents for a bottle of Powerade is pretty awesome!

My local Food4Less, which is owned by Kroger, has these Free Friday coupons that only come out on Friday, and can be cashed out within a few weeks, each item can be valued for up to a few dollars each, last week I saved 7 dollars on Freebies. If you do Coupon Clipping, there is a chance that you can get free products

If you are also going to spend a lot of money at the store, using store coupons, like Dollar General’s “Spend 50 save 5” deal. So if through the use of discounts and sales you pay 50 dollars for 75 worth of product, you can expound upon that with the 5$ extra discount.

You can also make some money shopping if you use rebate apps like Checkout 51, or Ibotta. You won’t make a lot, but anything you earn can be subtracted off of what you paid for the products, sometimes allowing you to MAKE money if combined with coupons and sales. For more about THAT, you can visit an awesome site called KrazyCouponLady.com.

Conclusion

By using all of these methods I was able to save over 95% on my grocery bill while still not sacrificing flavor or variety. I still shock myself sometimes when I go to the store with only 10 dollars to spend and walk out with 3 or 4 bags of groceries.

Just remember though, coupons don’t make up much in my shopping trip aside from Free Friday deals or store coupons. Sales and discounted goods, along with store-brands made up the majority of my purchasing decisions, saving me the most money. Coupons help me purchase a lot of stuff for cheap or free at places like Dollar Tree. Free stuff is the best stuff! I will start posting shopping trips and stuff here on how I saved money during some of my bigger shopping trips.

Quaker Breakfast Flats Review

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I was able to get 2 boxes of these for FREE at my local Food4Less/Kroger thanks to their Free Friday deal they have going on. If you live near a Kroger or Food4Less or any of their affiliated companies, definitly look into this. I have 2 different rewards cards, so whenever they have a FREE deal, I am able to indulge in twice the number of benefits and game the system. Granted, both cards belong to two different people in my household, so they both don’t belong to me.

They taste pretty OK. I got the Banana Honey and the Raisin Cinnamon kind, I much prefer the Banana Honey, but that might just be cause I am not a huge fan of cinnamon. I would not spend any money out of pocket to get these if I had the choice.

These are not all that filling, each pack comes in a set of 3 flats. They are crispy, and due to the fact that you are more likely than not going to eat more than one pack, high in calories. A single packet has about 180 Calories, 12 grams of sugar, 3 grams of fiber, and 3 grams of protein. You can get much better nutrition from a half cup of another Quaker product which you can get more for your money for: Oatmeal. In fact, for cheap, you can make your own Oatmeal bars.

To make for a pretty good deal, however, is that these bars are Vegan. It’s hard enough to find good vegan foods, let alone good FREE vegan foods. But if you missed this deal, which was only available to load from the Kroger rewards card on 5/27/2016, no need to worry, every Friday is a new Freebie!

Food Review: TVP

TVP, also known as Textured Vegetable Protein, is simply granules of soy beans. Many stores have them, but I personally have only been able to find the stuff at my local health food store. A 2 pound package of this will last quite awhile, and I bought mine for like, 7 dollars? Maybe less? I don’t quite remember as I lost the receipt.

TVP has no flavor, so you can literally combine it with anything. Adding it with a liquid makes the otherwise tough dry crunchy material into a soft material. It is also extremely filling as well, so be wary in how much you plan on eating. It makes a pretty good meat-alternative as well, although I usually just go to Gardein or Boca for my veggie crumble.  It is best combined in soups or the like, I personally like to add it in with some cereal, just for a boost of extra protein and vitamins.

Which brings me to my next observation: TVP is FULL of good stuff! A single half-cup serving of these granules has only 150 Calories, but 78% of Copper, 50% of Magnesium and Phosphorus, 35% of Folate, 33% of Zinc, 7 grams of Fiber, and a whopping 24 grams of protein!

I often eat this as a great way to get extra Protein and Zinc in my diet as a vegan, which is good because some days it is really hard to get an adequate amount of Zinc, especially now that I am eating tons more fruit, which I have to cut down a little on. You can buy a 10 oz bag of TVP from BobsRedMill for just 2.99, although the shipping is pretty expensive. It is better if you buy it in store, such as in a Whole Foods, or a Strack Van Til.

I definitely recommend this product for anyone who want a healthy and easy addition to soups or cereals.

Food Review: Morningstar Farms Tomato & Basil Pizza Burger

Morningstar Farms Tomato & Basil Pizza Burger is one of those veggie burgers that are really odd for a veggie burger. This burger in no way tries to taste like a burger, in fact, it tastes like it is supposed to taste like: Pizza. I actually think I like this patty by itself more than I like it on bread. It is very creamy and tastes just like pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese, which is great for people who like pizza, but to be honest, it doesn’t taste as good on bread. Maybe cut it up and put it on Pizza?

I had one of the patties on pasta with some pasta sauce and cheese on top, and it makes a good side dish. You can also eat it without the cheese, possibly try some Nutritional Yeast for a dairy-free cheesy flavor.

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I put one of these patties on some pasta with Mozzarella Cheese, not bad at all

It is definitely not a Vegan product,as it contains milk and egg products, something I didn’t check before buying it saying I am a lacto-vegetarian, but oh well. It is better to eat trace amounts than to consume a whole egg, whether in terms of health, or ethics. So This is definitely one of those products that I will not be able to eat after I become vegan.

Healthwise these might not be very good for you either. One patty has 110 Calories in it, 6 grams of fat, and 1.5 grams of Saturated Fat. However, it does have 6 grams of Fiber, and 10 grams of Protein per patty as well, so for the negatives, there is some good. Still a rather junky food, however.

It is pretty expensive as well, like with most Morningstar products, this product has 4 patties for 4 dollars at your local supermarket. I bought this at Food4Less, and while 4 dollars isn’t that much money, it could easily be cheaper.

Food Review: Chef Ernesto Veggie Burgers/Samosa

Chef Ernesto seems to be a brand dedicated to Dollar Tree, in which they make a small number of items, from Veggie Burgers to Breaded Mushrooms and French Toast. The main issue they have is that they suck at PR, because all they have is a Facebook Page and a horrible Blogspot URL. It saddens me that a business that makes as much as they do from their dollar products don’t at least spend $18 a year for an actual URL, but that has little to do with the food.

I have tried the Samosa when my boyfriends mother made them for me, only because I am the only vegetarian in the vicinity. I loved the hell out of them! She cooked them in the oven so that the crust was nice and crispy, but the inside were soft and fantastic! They are also slightly spicy, not too much, but enough so that someone who doesn’t eat spicy often notices.

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These ones are not yet cooked, but it is just to give you a picture of how they look.

The veggie burgers are the same when it comes to spicy, but they are very mushy. I find that a plus at times, but many might not like the mushy consistency. They are made primarily with potatoes, but they do have full pieces of vegetable in them, including carrots, bell peppers, and green beans, so that’s a plus if you don’t mind your burger looking like veggie. The Samosa is the same, made primarily with potatoes, but also with peas and ginger. The burgers are also VERY thick too, I was shocked that they were like that for just a dollar.

The product is devoid pf preservatives and artificial colors. The ingredient list is filled with just food ingrediants, such as potatoes, flour, carrots, peas, and spices, and that’s about it, so anyone who is worried about artificiality should not worry too much about this product, although I personally find little issue with artificial ingrediants, according to the evidence of their safety. The burgers also have corn kernals and peas in them, but those ingrediants are not mentioned on the ingredient lists…

Cooking is easy enough, with both products you can just shove them in the oven. But if you like, you can cook them on the skillet with a little vegetable or canola oil, or you can even pop them in the microwave, but that is not recommended, because it just gets mushy and doesn’t taste as good as the skillet version.

The big issue with the food comes from the protein content. The burger has 130 Calories, 5 grams of fat, and very little protein, only 5 grams. It does have 30% of your daily value of Vitamin A though. The Samosa has 96 Calories per 2 dumplings, but if you are like me, you will eat more than 2 at a time. I would eat at least 4 with a meal, so about 200 Calories for 4, and that comes complete with 6 grams of fat, 1 grams of fiber, and only 2 grams of protein. So the nutrition is a little lacking.

I like the price, since they both came from Dollar Tree, both were a dollar. For the burgers, they come 2 in a pack, while the Samosa has 8 in a box. So it is only 50 cents per burger, and only about 12 cents per Samosa. So it is easily affordable.

I just wish that that product had a little more nutrition in it, but I guess there is not much that you are going to get for a dollar. For such a cheap product, you are getting a good product. I do want to try out the mushrooms and the french toast as well someday.