Tag Archives: produce

Market on the Move

3 Nov

I’m finally getting around to writing about this program!

Market on the Move was started by The 3000 Club.  To give you a little background, here is some information from their website:

In October of 2010, the Market On the Move (MOM) was born. The 3000 Club founders Ethel Luzario and Lon Taylor partnered with churches and other non-profit organizations to host weekly markets where semi-truck loads of produce were brought into the valley.  A supporter can donate $10 and receive up to 60 lbs. of produce that they can share with anyone they know who may be in need. By end of the season in May 2013, there were over 50 distribution sites and 90 million pounds of produce have been rescued and redistributed.

It started in Sierra Vista in April 2013, and happened every other week until June 1, with a special event on June 29.  Usually, it doesn’t happen over the summer because it’s too hot to be out doing events.  I only made it to a couple of the events, and a friend shared hers with me for the events I couldn’t make.  Since it’s rescued produce, meaning produce that would have otherwise been thrown away by produce suppliers in Nogales, AZ, because they couldn’t sell it because of dates or quality, it’s not always perfect.  There are some imperfections at times, or some has gotten moldy, but overall, a lot is still usable produce.  But, it also means that you have to find use for it almost right away.  Plus, it really varies event to event what is available and how much you can get.  Typically, each item will have a limit so that they can get produce to as many families as possible.

Yesterday (11/3/2013), was the first event of the new season in Sierra Vista.  I wasn’t able to go, but my husband went for me.  He paid 2 donations, or $20.   At this event, they estimated to have served about 700 families from the full truck (about 36,000 pounds of produce). Here is what he came home with:

Orange bell peppers, already cut into strips

Orange bell peppers, already cut into strips

Lots of cucumbers!

Lots of cucumbers!

Yellow Squash

Yellow Squash



Roma and cherry tomatoes

Roma and cherry tomatoes



This was definitely more produce than I could use, so I found 2 friends interested in some produce, and made them each a box like this:


As you can see, the peppers are in snack sized bags for my husband to take to work for snacks.  Half of the cucumbers I put in jars in the refrigerator to make pickles:

Refrigerator pickles

Not sure what I’ll do with the other half just yet, although some will be saved to juice with the watermelon to make Watermelon-Cucumber Coolers.  For the zucchini and yellow squash, I will slice it, blanch, and freeze.  Some will also be sliced, and I’m planning to use some of the Zaycon breakfast sausage that I just got, and make some Summer Squash, Sausage, and Egg Bakes to freeze and reheat for quick dinners later.  The tomatoes I’ll wash and puree to put in jars in the fridge to make a couple batches of Spanish Rice this week.  And then, I’ll take a long nap after all this work!

Edited to add:  Here are a couple of pictures of my prep and finished product of Summer Squash, Sausage, and Egg Bakes that I made.  I got foil pans with lids to use to bake them in and then freeze.

Ingredients for the casseroles

Ingredients for the casseroles

Finished casseroles in foil pans with lids for the freezer

Finished casseroles in foil pans with lids for the freezer

Grocery Store Grabs: 6/7/2013

9 Jun

I actually shopped on Friday, but I was busy with my kids yesterday.  They helped me shop this week, so there is a bit more than I usually get.  Some things weren’t on sale, but the price was still good enough to get for dinners I wanted to make this week.  Still lots of good produce deals out there, hopefully it will continue for a few more weeks.

Grocery Store Grabs: 6/7/2013Here is all we got:


2 AZ grown cantaloupe at $0.88/ea = $1.76
5 lb bag of AZ grown red potatoes at 2/$4 = $2
2 6 oz packages of blueberries at buy 1, get 1 free = $2.99
2.14 lb bananas at $0.57/lb = $1.22
1.15 lb Roma tomatoes (not shown) at $0.99
1.62 lb broccoli at $0.99/lb = $1.60
0.69 lb of red delicious apples at $1.59/lb = $1.10
2 Hass avocados at $0.88/ea = $1.76
1.50 lb navel oranges at $0.99/lb = $1.49
1 AZ grown hot house cucumber at $0.99/ea = $0.99
2.34 lb California yellow peaches at $0.99/lb = $2.32
0.71 lb red onion at $1.99/lb = $1.41
2 celery at $0.99/ea = $1.98
3 limes at 3/$1 = $1
1 bunch Romaine lettuce at $0.99/ea = $0.99


1.95 lb bananas at $0.57/lb = $1.11 (I got riper ones at Safeway since the Fry’s bananas were all very green)
2.61 lb red seedless grapes at $0.88/lb = $2.30
0.83 lb of red plums at $1.99/lb = $1.65
1 bunch spinach at $1.39/ea = $1.39
1 bunch cilantro at $0.50/ea = $0.50
1 package whole mushrooms at $1.99/ea = $1.99

Total between 2 stores: $32.54

WAY over budget this week, unfortunately, but, I also broke the #1 rule of deal shopping, never take the spouse and kids that aren’t deal crazy like you!  I also did not buy much last week, just bananas, so this is the make up week.  And, I will probably take it easy next week as well, just get a few things.

Grocery Store Grabs: 6/2/2013

2 Jun

So, I haven’t made it to the store yet, but wanted to make sure to post about some great produce deals this week!  These prices will be effective until Tuesday, June 4.



AZ grown cantaloupe: $0.99/ea
AZ grown honeydew: $2/ea
California yellow peaches: $0.99/lb
AZ grown hot house English cucumbers: $0.99/ea
AZ grown 16oz mini peeled carrots: $0.99/ea
AZ grown red tomatoes on the vine: $0.99/ea
AZ grown red potatoes, 5 lb bag: $2/ea
AZ grown mini seedless watermelon: $1.50/ea
Sweet corn: $0.33/ea
Red cherries: $2.99/lb
Broccoli or Cauliflower: $0.99/lb
Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or blackberries: $2.50/ea
Organic strawberries or blueberries: $3/ea

Also, the Fry’s milk half gallons are $0.88/ea, with a limit of 4.  Another good deal if you use the fuel points, is that all gift cards you buy will give you 4 times the fuel points.  Kroger family store gift cards are excluded, but there are plenty of gift cards to choose from.  With it being time for graduations and Father’s Day, it’s a great way to get extra points.  Or, if you are working on some home improvement projects, stop in and get one for Lowe’s or Home Depot before you shop to get the fuel points.  Fuel points can be used at Fry’s fuel stations, and select Shell and Circle K locations, and you can save up to $1/gallon (every 100 points earns $0.10 off per gallon) up to 35 gallons in one fill-up.  You can learn more here.



AZ grown cantaloupe: $0.99/ea
Sweet red cherries: $2.47/ea
Jumbo artichokes: $2/ea
Red, orange, or yellow bell peppers: $1.25/ea
Red seedless grapes: $2.99/lb
Large Hass avocados: $0.99/ea
White or yellow corn: $0.33/ea
Large tropical mangoes: $1/ea
Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries or blackberries: $2.99/ea
Peaches and nectarines: $2.99/lb
Roma tomatoes: $0.99/lb
Organic Flavorosa pluots: $2.99/lb
Organic tomatoes on the vine: $1.99/lb
Organic peeled baby carrots, 1 lb bag: $1.50/ea

Safeway has 1 gallon of their Pantry Essentials milk for $1.89, limit of 2.  Also, with summer here, Powerade is $0.49/ea, limit 15, to stock up on to keep hydrated on the hot days.  Safeway is running a promotion for 2 times the gas rewards points on groceries after adding it on your card with the Just for U program.  They are also running a 4 times the points when you buy gift cards as well.  Best part?  They have now expanded the gas rewards here to be not only at Safeway gas stations (which we didn’t have here), but also at select Chevron and Texaco stations.  Glad to be able to finally use some of the gas rewards from shopping at Safeway.  I did notice that the Chevron stations in town had roadside banners for the Safeway gas rewards program.  You can learn more about the program here.

Grocery Store Grabs: 5/10/2013

10 May

Made it to the grocery store today!  This week, I shopped at Safeway, but both stores had some nice produce sales again this week.

Here is what I got at Safeway:

Grocery Store Grabs: 5/10/2013


1.43 lb of bananas (5 bananas) at $0.57/lb = $0.82
1.77 lb of red seedless grapes at $2.99/lb = $5.29
2 avocados at $1/ea = $2
1 cantaloupe at $2.49/ea = $2.49
2 mangoes at $1/ea = $2
2.57 lb red potatoes (AZ grown) at $0.69/lb = $1.77
4 ears of white corn at $0.25/ea = $1
2.39 lb of fuji apples (5 apples) at $1.39/lb = $3.32
1.59 lb of organic on the vine tomatoes (AZ grown) at $1.99/lb = $3.16
1 8-oz package mushrooms at $1.50/ea = $1.50
1 1-lb package mini Persian cucumbers (AZ grown) at $1.99/ea = $1.99

Total: $25.34, $25.78 after tax

The grapes were a bit of a splurge item, they were cheap, but not real cheap, but I really wanted grapes!  I did also get a 18-oz package of blackberries and a 12-oz package of raspberries that were $5 each for my younger daughter who is berry crazy right now.  They also had on sale:

  • 2-lb container of strawberries at $1.99/ea
  • Jumbo navel oranges at $0.99/lb
  • Iceberg lettuce at $1.29/ea
  • Green bell peppers at $1/ea,
  • Golden pineapple at $2.99/ea
  • Jicama at $0.99/ea
  • Green zucchini or yellow squash at $1.49/ea.

Fry’s this week has on sale:

  • Dulcinea mini seedless watermelons at $0.99/ea (great price!)
  • Fuji, gala, red, or golden delicious apples at $0.99/lb
  • Navel oranges at $0.99/lb
  • Hot house English cucumbers (AZ grown) at $0.99/ea
  • 16-oz mini peeled carrots (AZ grown) at $0.99/ea
  • Zucchini squash at $0.99/lb
  • 2 lb bag of mini sweet peppers at $3.99/ea
  • Red seedless grapes at $1.99/lb
  • Strawberries or blackberries at $2.50/ea
  • Organic strawberries at $2.99/ea
  • Organic mangoes at $1.25/ea
  • Organic Hass avocados at $1.25/ea
  • Simple Truth organic baby spinach or spring mix at $3.99/ea

Lots of good deals there too.

All these prices will be good through Tuesday, May 14.

Grocery Store Grabs: 5/7/2013

7 May

Well, unfortunately I didn’t get to the store until today, which is the end of the sale cycle.  I’m hoping to shopping done earlier in the sale next week to share so others can get in on the deals too!  I was a little distracted at the store, so I went a little crazy shopping, but my family was so happy to see all that I got.  I went over my $15-$20 goal, but I did get a variety I liked!  This trip I made to Safeway.

Grocery Store Grabs: 5/7/2013


2.08 lb of bananas (6 bananas) at $0.57/lb = $1.19
1.99 lb of navel oranges (3 oranges) at $0.99/lb = $1.97
3 kiwi at $0.25/ea = $0.75
3 avocados at $0.77/ea = $2.31
2 limes at $.25/ea = $0.50
1 bunch celery at $1.29/ea = $1.29
2.67 lb of cauliflower at $0.99/lb = $2.64
2 bunches of radishes at $0.44/ea = $0.88
2.09 lb sweet onions at $1/lb = $2.09
0.88 lb of broccoli crowns at $0.99/lb = $0.87
0.38 lb of rhubarb at $2.49/lb = $0.95
0.85 lb of tomatillos at $0.99/lb = $0.84
1 package of mushrooms at $1.99/ea = $1.99
2 packages of blackberries at $1.88/ea = $3.76
1 pineapple at $2.99/ea = $2.99

Total: $25.02, $25.46 after tax

Just a bit over my goal, but like I said, I am happy with the variety and looking forward to making meals with it this week.  I think I am most looking forward to making a Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp.  Yum!

Grocery Store Grabs: 4/28/2013

28 Apr

Like the title?  I was trying to keep with my other titles like Basket Breakdown, Farmer’s Market Finds and FarmBox Fresh since I’m hoping to keep this up for at least a few weeks, maybe months.  We’ll see.  I haven’t gotten as much written lately as I would like, but life is busy and so it goes.

Anyway, I am way behind on the grocery sale cycle this week and finally got to at least Fry’s to get my weekly produce.  I took both my girls, which is breaking the number 1 rule of bargain shopping – never take the family.  Why?  My kids think the produce section is like a candy store, and want everything.  And, I have a hard time saying no to fresh produce!  But, with the goal of $15-$20, we didn’t go over too badly.  We did get a great variety of produce, though!

Grocery Store Grabs: 4/28/20131 head of Romaine lettuce at $0.99/ea = $0.99
1 bunch celery at $1.29/ea = $1.29
1 bunch organic carrots at $1.49/ea = $1.49
1.20 lb broccoli at $0.99/lb = $1.19
2.23 lb cauliflower at $1.29/lb = $2.88
2 artichokes at $1/ea = $2
1 cucumber (AZ grown, EuroFresh Farms) at $0.99/ea = $0.99
1 bunch radishes at $0.59/ea = $0.59
1.16 lb of Roma tomatoes (6 tomatoes) at $0.99/lb = $1.15
2.07 lb red seedless grapes at $2.49/lb = $5.15
1 personal seedless watermelon at $1.25/ea = $1.25
1 cantaloupe at $1.99/ea = $1.99
2.53 lb of bananas (8 bananas) at $0.57/lb = $1.44
2.03 lb red delicious apples (6 apples) at $0.99/lb = $2.01
2.15 lb navel oranges (4 oranges) at $0.99/lb = $2.13

Total: $26.54, $27 after tax

The grapes and cauliflower are what made us go over.  However, my older daughter was upset that I was hesitant, so I bought them anyway.  Without those 2 items, I would have been at $18.51, $18.83 after tax.  I also picked up some more shredded and sliced cheese at $1.88 and $1.99 per package, respectively.

Other produce sales from the Fry’s ad include, 1 lb baby carrots at $0.99/ea, iceberg, red or green leaf lettuce at $0.99/ea, asparagus at $2.99/lb, 1 lb strawberries, 8 oz blackberries, or 8 oz blueberries at $2.50/ea, 1 lb organic strawberries at $2.99/ea, and organic 5-9 oz salad blends at $2.99/ea.  I haven’t been to Safeway, but from their ad, they have 1 lb strawberries at $0.99/ea, red delicious or Gala apples at $0.99/lb, sweet white corn at $0.50/ea, red or black seedless grapes at $2.99/lb, red, orange, or yellow peppers at $1.25/ea, red or ataulfo mangoes at $1/ea, red or russet potatoes at $0.99/lb, Hass avocados at $1/ea, red seedless watermelon, locally grown 1 lb bag of baby-cut carrots at $1.50/ea, locally grown tomatoes on the vine at $1.99/lb, and locally grown 1 lb bag mini Persian cucumbers at $1.99/ea.  I may have to make a stop at Safeway to pick up a few of the produce deals there.

Navigating the Produce Section

17 Apr

I have been stretching our grocery budget for a few years now. First thing to know for southeast AZ is that grocery store prices are very competitive. There are a lot of sales and the prices on some things are pretty reasonable, including produce.  Second thing to know is that the sale cycle typically runs Wednesday through Tuesday.  Finally, make sure to you have a store shopping card to get the sale prices.

Here, we have a handful of places to find produce, the commissary on Ft. Huachuca, Walmart, Target, Food City, Fry’s, and Safeway.  I’ve found quality-wise, my favorites are Fry’s and Safeway for produce.  Plus, they have a wide selection, especially at Fry’s.  Food City, Fry’s, and Safeway put out an ad weekly in the newspaper to tell you some of the sales, then in store there are usually some unadvertised sales as well.

Now that I’m busy with other things on Saturday and not participating in Bountiful Baskets as often, I’ve started building my own basket in the produce section at the grocery store to get my produce for the week.  My goal was to stay between $15-$20, and get a variety of both fruits and vegetables.  Last week was my first try at it, and I chose Safeway.  Here is how I did:

Safeway trip 4/12/2013

2.26 lbs of bananas (6 bananas) at $0.57/lb = $1.29
1.93 lb navel oranges (3 oranges) at $0.99/lb = $1.91
3 avocados at $1/ea = $3
2 mangoes at $1/ea = $2
2 cucumbers at $0.79/ea = $1.58
1.72 lb fuji apples (4 apples) at $1.39/lb = $2.39
0.78 lb broccoli crowns at $0.99/lb = $0.77
1 package whole mushrooms at $1.99/ea = $1.99
5 lbs russet potatoes at $2.49/ea = $2.49
4 lbs strawberries at $0.99/ea = $3.96
2 lbs baby carrots (from an AZ farm) at $1.99/ea = $1.99

Total: $23.37, $23.78 after tax

Not bad for my first try.  If you take out the extra 3 lbs of strawberries, I’m just above $20 ($20.40 to be exact).  Since the strawberries were cheap, I stocked up to put in the freezer for smoothies over the summer.  The avocados have already been made into guacamole, the carrots and broccoli are for my daughter’s lunches.  The cucumbers I will make into dill pickles, and the  mushrooms and potatoes, possibly some baby carrots too, will go with a roast in the slow cooker.  The oranges will get juiced with some grapefruit and minneolas I already have, the apples will be snacks, and the mangoes and strawberries will be blended into smoothies.

That was all from last week’s ad, so now that it is Wednesday, there is a new ad.  Today, a friend and I went to Fry’s and Safeway to see what we could put together with this week’s sales.

Let’s start at Fry’s.

Fry's trip 4/17/20131.32 lb broccoli at $0.99/lb = $1.31
1 green leaf lettuce at $.99/ea = $0.99
1 celery at $1.29/ea = $1.29
1.21 lb Roma tomatoes (6 tomatoes) at $0.99/ea = $1.20
0.96 lb jicama at $1.49/lb = $1.43
1 seedless watermelon at $2.99/ea = $2.99
1 lb baby carrots (from an AZ farm) at $0.99/ea = $0.99
1.68 lb navel oranges (3 oranges) at $0.99/lb = $1.66
2.13 lb gala apples (6 apples) at $0.99/lb = $2.11
2.02 lb bananas (5 bananas) at $.57/lb = $1.15
1 80z container blackberries at $1.50/ea = $1.50
1 1 lb container strawberries at $1.50/ea = $1.50

Total: $18.12, $18.43 after sales tax

I did better this round, and I think I got a nice variety of produce.  I also picked up more strawberries, because this week they have a 4 lb container of strawberries for $3.49 (limit of 2).  That’s less than $1/lb, which is a great stock up price!  Frozen strawberries aren’t quite the same as fresh, but they still make great smoothies and frozen lemon or lime-ade for summer.  There are also other varieties of apples (fuji, red or golden delicious) for $0.99/lb, as well as other varieties of lettuce for $0.99/each (iceberg, Romaine, or red leaf).  Zucchini and yellow squash is also $0.99/lb, but I’m already stocked well on that from Market on the Move (a new event in the area I have on the list to write about).

Next, we headed to Safeway to check out the deals there.  This one was a little tougher, the sales weren’t as good as Fry’s, but we still came out pretty well.

Safeway trip 4/17/20131.93 lb bananas (6 bananas) at $0.57/lb = $1.10
1.67 lb navel oranges (2 oranges) at $0.77/lb = $1.29
2 avocados at $1/ea = $2
2 cantaloupes at $1.50/ea = $3
1 lb asparagus at $0.99/lb = $0.99
1.84 lb fuji apples at $1.39/lb = $2.56
1 pineapple at $2.99/ea = $2.99
0.95 lb broccoli crowns at $0.99/lb = $0.94
1.11 lb sweet potatoes (2 sweet potatoes) at $0.99/lb = $1.10
2 lb bag carrots (from an AZ farm) at $1.29/ea = $1.29
(Celery was accidentally in the picture, forgot to move it after the Fry’s trip picture!)

Total: $17.26, $17.56 after tax

Other items on sale include mangoes for $1/ea, 1 lb strawberries for $2.99, red seedless grapes for $2.99/ea, artichokes for $2.49/ea, grape tomatoes for $2/ea, red or green bell peppers for $0.99/ea, russet potatoes for $0.99/lb, organic red delicious or fuji apples for $1.49/lb, organic tomatoes on the vine for $2.69/lb, and organic mini watermelon for $4.69/ea.  So, there are a few things you could swap out and still get the same total at the end.

So, today, I stayed in the original goal of $15-$20, and I was able to make it a part of my weekly trip to the store to get my other basics, milk ($1.79 a gallon at both Fry’s and Safeway), eggs ($1.50/dozen at Fry’s) and cheese ($1.99 for sliced, $1.88 for shredded and blocks).  Fry’s also has a Mega Sale right now where select items you get $5 off each set of 5 items you buy, mix and match on the deals.  If you choose to shop at Safeway, they also have a deal today though Sunday that you get $10 reward coupon when you spend $75 or more in a single transaction.  Make sure to sign up for just for U at Safeway to get coupons loaded onto your card for more savings.

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