Buying in Bulk to Save Money, Cooking in Bulk to Save Time

What do you do to make eating gluten-free easy for your family? I buy in bulk to save money, and cook in bulk to save time. Today I’m sharing my tips for Diane’s, 30 Days to Easy Gluten-Free Living. I’m kind of at the end of the month here, so make sure you go through the links (at the bottom) and check out all the other great posts for more ideas.

I think there are two keys to easy gluten-free living: Buy in bulk, and cook in bulk. When I first found out my girls (babies at that time) were reacting to gluten and dairy, I turned to a lot of packaged food. Besides most of the packaged food being unhealthy, it also cost a fortune. We spent more money on food that first year than ever before or ever since.
Buying in Bulk to Save Money:

There are a several places I buy in bulk to save money. The first is Costco. Unfortunately, not all Costco’s (or other similar stores) carry the same things, but you should check them out to see what they have. Yesterday some of you told us that your Costco has coconut water—That’s so cool! Here are some of the things I get at the Costco in Colorado:

Costco, organic:
frozen green beans
frozen cherries

frozen blueberries
butter to make ghee
chicken broth
apple sauce

fruit leather

Costco, not organic:

MaraNatha almond butter
San Pellegrino water
Izze Sparkling juice

iHerb is another place I like to shop in bulk. They sell items individually, or you can buy bigger quantities for a discount. Here are some of the things I look for there:
iHerb (these are all links):
liquid Evening Primrose Oil, because Ashley needs tons of Omega 6 (surprisingly)
Goji Berries, for pie, smoothies, & ice cream (soak for 10 minutes before using)

Azure Standard is another great resource for buying in bulk. I recently got a ton of cocoa powder from them for such a great price. Note: Some of the prices below may have changed since I first looked them up.
Azure Standard Co-op (I buy these in bulk, prices may change):
almond meal flour, 5 pounds for $27
apple cider vinegar, organic, $4.40 for 32 oz
baking soda, aluminum-free, 1 pound for $1.60, 5 pounds for $3.25
blanched almonds, 5 pounds for $23.85
cashew pieces, 5 pounds for $14.85
coconut flour, organic, 4 bags for $21
coconut milk, organic, Thai Kitchen, 12 cans for $18
lemon juice, organic, $3.90 for 16 oz, or $42.35 for a case of 12
medjool dates, organic (best I’ve ever had), 5 pounds for $29.95
navy beans, dry organic, 4 bags for $15.90
quinoa flakes, organic, 2 pounds for $6.50
raspberry leaf tea, organic, 6 boxes for $22.50
raspberry spread, fruit-sweetened (no added sugar), Crofter’s organic, 12 jars for $31.30
shredded unsweetened coconut, organic, 5 pounds for $10.30
Sunbutter, organic, 6 for $33.45
tapioca flour, $2.20 for one or $24 for 12
Tinkyada organic brown rice spaghetti, 10 pounds for $30.65
vanilla extract, organic, 4 oz for $8.30
walnuts, organic, 3 pounds for $13.75
I buy coconut sugar on Amazon (click here for the coconut sugar I use), and sometimes other groceries as well. Recently I noticed they had vanilla creme stevia for less than 9 dollars, which is a great deal. And sometimes you can get free shipping with Amazon on orders over 25 dollars, if what you’re buying qualifies (it will say so next to the price).
You can also visit my Grocery Shopping Guide any time for more on what I buy and where I shop.
Cooking in Bulk to Save Time:

One of my favorite ways to save time is buy cooking in bulk. Whether it’s a simple stir-fry or a time-consuming lasagna, I always make way more than we need. Then I freeze or refrigerate the extra food so I don’t have to cook every day. Here are some of my favorite recipes to double:

Nutty Banana Bread

Coffee Cake Note: Only one batch will fit in your blender or food processor at a time, but you can bake two at the same time, and freeze one.

Chai Granola

Pot Pie Pockets

Veggie Burgers

Easy Chicken Paprika

Check out all the other great ideas below.
♥, Kelly

Monday May 2nd Diane, The WHOLE Gang sharing Easy Gluten Free Grocery Shopping Tips

Tuesday May 3rd Iris from The Daily Dietribe sharing on How to Start a Gluten Free Diet.

Wednesday May 4th Heather from Gluten-Free Cat sharing Smoothing the GF Transition with Smoothies

Thursday May 5th Alta from Tasty Eats at Home sharing Make Your Own Convenience Foods

Friday May 6th Elana from Elana’s Pantry sharing Quick and Easy Gluten Free Cherry Vanilla Power Bars

Saturday May 7th Cheryl from Gluten Free Goodness sharing Easy Meals GF Style

Sunday May 8th Megan from Food Sensitivity Journal sharing Gluten Free Baking Undone: Easy Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie

Monday May 9th Amy from Simply Sugar and Gluten Free sharing Magic Cookie Power Bars.

Tuesday May 10th Ricki from Diet, Dessert and Dogs sharing Gluten Free Baking Tips

Wednesday May 11th Ellen from Gluten-Free Diva sharing Gluten Free Travel Tips

Thursday May 12th Kim from Cook It Allergy Free sharing Eating from your Garden for Easy Gluten-Free Living

Friday May 13th Melissa from Gluten Free For Good sharing Gluten-Free Food Rules (recipes included)

Saturday May 14th Brittany from Real Sustenance sharing Healthy Allergy-Free Quick Bread with easy flavor variations.

Sunday May 15th Nicola from g-free Mom sharing Kids Lunch Boxes

Monday May 16th Wendy from Celiacs in the House sharing Fast Food for Gluten Free Teens

Tuesday May 17th Shirley from gluten free easily sharing Your Pantry is the Key to Living gfe

Wednesday May 18th Nancy from The Sensitive Pantry sharing Tips for BBQ and Picnics

Thursday May 19th Heidi from Adventures of a Gluten-Free Mom sharing Tips for Getting Kids to Embrace Whole Foods

Friday May 20th Silvana from Silvana’s Kitchen sharing Everything I’ve Learned So Far about Gluten-Free plus my Dairy-Free Nutella Knockoff recipe!

Saturday May 21st Maggie from She Let Them Eat Cake sharing Easy Gluten-Free Living With Preschoolers and a Vanilla Cupcake recipe!

Sunday May 22nd Sea from Book of Yum sharing Easy Gluten Free Vegetarian Soy Free Breakfast Burritos

Monday May 23rd Tia from Glugle Gluten-Free sharing The Value of Support

Tuesday May 24th Alisa from Alisa Cooks and Go Dairy Free sharing Wrap it Up-Thinking Outside the Bun

Wednesday May 25th Hallie from Daily Bites sharing Cooking by Color

Thursday May 26th Carol from Simply…Gluten-Free sharing tips on Entertaining

Friday May 27th AndreaAnna from Life as a Plate sharing Tips on Traveling on Day Trips with Kids

Saturday May 28th Zoe from Z’s Cup of Tea sharing Feasting With Their Eyes: Food Packaging and Presentation For Kids

Sunday May 29th Kelly from The Spunky Coconut sharing Buying in bulk to save money, Cooking in bulk to save time.

Monday May 30th Rella from Penny Pinching Epicure sharing Gluten Free on a Budget.

Tuesday May 31st Naomi from Straight into Bed, Cakefree and Dried sharing how to prepare grains so they are more nutritious & digestible and create fluffier wholegrain baked goods!


  1. says

    What a great resource this post is, Kelly! I love that you’ve given specifics because even though all might not be exactly what readers will buy for their families, many will be and for others they can just replace with their favorite ingredients. Print out, mark up, and soon everyone will have their own family’s easy reference sheet for their shopping and cooking. :-) Another wonderful addition to 30 Days to Easy Gluten-Free Living!

    Thanks, Kelly! xo,

  2. says

    If you live in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, you can cut your frugal shopping in bulk down to just one place: The Organic Depot. Not only do they have a universe of foods available online, but they are the cheapest thing going in this area (I even compared them to online sources). Everything is 20% off to start, and the discounts pile up after that–case lot discounts, month-long store sales and manufacturer sales, closeouts and discontinueds, the list goes on, and this is BEFORE you throw in any coupons! One trip, I saved more than I spent, and save anywhere from 50-80% every week.

    I have never had to use coupons here, because the per-unit price for large orders is so much cheaper than anything a coupon could yield me for smaller sizes.

    50 lb. bags of rice flour, anyone? Cases and 25 lb. bags of GF pasta? Gallon buckets of coconut oil? 10 lb. bags of dried fruit or allergen-free choc chips? Cases of coconut milk, canned salmon, or No-Mato tomato-free tomato sauce substitute? 10 lb. blocks of low-sodium cheeses? They have it all.

    In addition to organic stuff, they also have access to conventional stuff, and they take SNAP cards if you use one.

  3. says

    English toffee liquid stevia? Are you serious? Wow, that sounds like a wonderful addition. How did I get along without that?!

    I love all your links. What a valuable resource! It amazes me how many new organic items are at Costco each time I go. I like supporting my local farmer’s markets, my CSA and local stores, but sometimes stocking up at Costco is the only way to go. Thanks for providing us with a laundry (grocery) list of ideas, Kelly. This is awesome!


  4. says

    I’m making a grocery list just for those pot pie pockets. I’ve been wondering how on earth I could make one of my son’s favorite lunch box items!

  5. says

    What a super useful post! You are inspiring me to check out Costco again. I had let my membership there lapse as mine really had very little in the way of organics, but I need to check it out again, as it has been over a year since I have been.

  6. says

    Just found your blog today, through a Whole Gang Facebook post. LOVE your blog! So very excited to see new recipes and bright photos of yummy REAL foods, in a very similar lifestyle to my own!
    Blessings to you and your family as you prepare to add another sweet member!

  7. says

    A fabulous resource. And I love when I find more info about things I do/am interested in already! I love buying in bulk (& get teased mercilessly by my hubby about it), but it is so much more economical in the long run. Great post, Kelly! :)

  8. says

    Thanks so much for this post, Kelly. I shop at Costco, but I had no idea they had so many organic options. I’m going to have to do some investigating! Thanks for the links to your bulk recipes too. I love cooking in bulk, and if YOU choose to make a recipe bulk it must be amazing! :)

  9. says

    Do you mind sharing the item code for your 5 lbs. of cashew pieces for $14.58. I can’t seem to find that and it’s a GREAT deal!

  10. says

    I cook up a big pot of white beans and freeze in 2 cup portions. Then when I want to make your coffee cake or other bean based recipe, I just pull the bag out of the freezer to thaw and we’re good to go!

    We love Azure Standard too. But did you notice that the shredded coconut says that the 5 lb bag is NOT gluten free! It has been processd through their dipping room. Only the 25 lb bag is gluten free. So now I buy through Tropical Traditions when they have a free shipping day. I think the price is similar.

  11. Anonymous says

    LLLOOOVVVEEE Costco. We have a family of 6 and so Costco is a must. We buy our eggs at the farmers market about 15-20 doz at a time. Beef, grass fed AND finished, from a local farmer if possible. I am also part of a local food buying club that gets wholesale prices from U.N.F.I . Although I did buy from Azure Standard when we were back in WA. State. Don’t think they come to FL. yet? Yes we spend a lot on food but less at the Dr and DDS! Except my boy with Autism has terrible teeth from prior gut damage and FLUOROSIS. So we also filter our water with an RO system that also filters fluoride from the water. :o) Hope in FL.

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