6 ways to be gluten free on a budget

Some of you might know that MT can’t eat foods containing gluten, and I have a gluten sensitivity (which isn’t nearly as serious).

Even though my issue isn’t extreme, it’s safe to assume that our household is pretty much gluten free.

When we first made the transition, the first thing that I noticed was how expensive it is to eat this way.  A loaf of gluten free bread is like half of Michael’s college tuition!

OK, I’m mildly exaggerating, but it is considerably more than normal bread.

The drastic increase in our grocery bill was kind of shocking at first, but over the past year and a half, I’ve learned how to make being gluten free a bit more affordable.


6 ways to be gluten free on a budget from The Grass Skirt Blog


1.  Sign up for promotional emails from brands, such as Udi’s and Van’s.  I know that getting messages from companies in your inbox can be kind of annoying, but it will be worth it once you start receiving all of their coupons.

2. Don’t waste your money on gluten free versions of every type of food on the planet.  These days, you can find gluten free cookies, crackers, donuts, cake, etc. at health food stores and even mainstream supermarkets.  While it is nice to have so many options, those foods are really expensive and the amount of food per box is usually miniscule.  Plus, those foods aren’t necessarily healthy just because they are gluten free.  Your best bet is to stick to foods that are naturally gluten free- like fruits and vegetables.

3. Do some serious comparison shopping before loading up on groceries.  I’ve personally found that I can get the best deals by shopping at Trader Joe’s and Vitacost (specifically on bread and pasta).  Unfortunately, gluten free items don’t seem to go on sale too often at my local supermarkets, but I still check out the sales online just in case.

4. Save the end pieces of your gluten free bread and use them as hamburger or veggie burger buns instead of buying gluten free buns.  It might sound simple, but this is one of the best discoveries I’ve made!

5.  Try to make your own gluten free foods at home whenever possible.  For example, MT loves Udi’s gluten free muffins, but a package of 4 is about $7.  I can easily make my own at home for way less money and usually end up with about three times as many muffins!  You can also grind your own flour, bake your own bread, make your own pizza, and even bake your own croutons at home.

6. Shop the bulk bins.  I love raiding the bulk bins at Whole Foods and Earth Fare, especially for different types of quinoa. A giant bag of quinoa can last for awhile, isn’t terribly pricey, and can yield a ton of servings.  Whenever I am trying to cut down on how much I’m spending on groceries, I always throw a quinoa dish into our weekly menu.

Is anyone in your household gluten free?  If so, how do you keep your grocery bill under control?  We also make wraps using lettuce leaves instead of tortillas, but I loved doing that even before I even knew what it meant to be gluten free.

Have a great day!



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  1. I myself try to eat less gluten just because I seem to feel better without it, but you’re right it can be expensive! Thanks for the tips! I’ll totally try them out.

  2. Another blogger posted about bulk bins today too to save money. But I have celiac and am worried about cross contamination. Also I always get worried about germs? Do you think about this stuff to or am I just being my extremely cautious self? Because I really would love to buy from the bulk bins but I am so worried!

    • Great question! Cross-contamination has never been an issue for us, but I am sure that it varies by store. I’m willing to bet that a store manager would be happy to talk with you about it, and hopefully, it will all be safe so you can raid those bins! 🙂

  3. I’ve never had an issue with gluten (at least that I’m aware of) so we just buy sprouted grain organic breads. I would never buy the cheaper brands because if I am eating breads/bagels/etc, I want them to be sprouted and full of healthy grains vs. refined. I must admit that I’m a huge bread lover (might be because I worked in a bakery in high school haha), so I would be devastated if I ever had to give it up. We do buy GF pasta once in a while though!!

    • I LOVE sprouted breads. Trader Joe’s has an amazing wheat and rye one that I lived off of when I was pregnant. When I was pregnant, I said, “Bring on the gluten!”. LOL.

  4. Hey There! I have found your blog through the blog block party and I am now following you on bloglovin 🙂 I have just recently been told I may be gluten intolerant and have had to trial a gluten free diet, and it is very hard to stick too!

    Anyways I look forward to following your blog and reading your future posts 🙂


    • Aw. Good luck sticking to your gluten free diet. It can be kind of a pain every now and then, but it isn’t as horrible as I thought it would be. 🙂 Thanks so much for following! 🙂


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