I’m always looking for ways to incorporate more natural foods into my diet.
I’ve long thought that the phrase “natural foods” was a term synonymous with words like “expensive,” “inconvenient,” or simply “time-consuming.” OK, maybe that last one is actually two words, but I think you get the idea.
I used to think of natural foods as time-consuming because, traditionally, I didn’t find many “natural” foods in the ready-to-eat and frozen sections at my grocery store. I imagine you may have had similar grocery shopping experiences.
And, if there is one thing I usually lack, it’s time. The other is money. Normally I’m short on both simultaneously.
However, it seems like more food companies are hearing the pleas from us time- and money-deprived grocery shoppers.
I’m seeing that more and more frozen and pre-packaged foods at my grocery store are going the natural path lately. That’s definitely making it easier — and more affordable — for me to eat healthfully.
Of course, nothing beats good old-fashioned home cooking, but because I’m not usually spending much time in the kitchen, I’m always looking for my next meal either in a cardboard box or plastic sack.
While it still seems sometimes challenging to find truly organic foods at a regular grocery store, I’m at least encouraged to see there are more natural food options at the store now than there were a few years ago.
Below is a list of 4 well-known food brands that are offering a growing line of natural foods in the “regular” sections at the grocery store.
Again, I’m not necessarily saying these are organic foods (though some are). Rather, these are common food products that have fewer, or no, preservatives or artificial flavors and additives.
By the way, I’m in no way affiliated with any of these brands; I’m just really excited to be seeing these companies unrolling healthier food options. Perhaps you’ll want to check them out, too:
#1 – Amy’s Kitchen
If you know anything about organic foods, then you probably aren’t surprised to see Amy’s Kitchen natural foods listed here. However, I’ve run across many people who don’t know anything about Amy’s Kitchen, which is why I think I need to give a shout out here.
Amy’s Kitchen was probably the first natural foods brand I ever found on the shelves of a conventional grocery store. The company takes a clear stance against GMO foods and now offers a variety of other products, including gluten-free foods.
Most of the products in the Amy’s Kitchen food line are frozen, though there are some other entries — like canned organic soups. Those are delicious, but my favorite Amy’s Kitchen items are their burritos, which are generally under $3 (look for coupons!) and easy to make.
Amy’s also makes pasta bowls, salsa, veggie burgers, and many other foods.
I even hear Amy’s Kitchen also makes candy bars, though I haven’t tried any of those yet.
#2 – Kraft Foods
This was welcome news to millions, and yet another step for Kraft in making their convenience foods healthier.
As you’re probably pretty well aware, Kraft Foods makes a whole lot more than just mac & cheese and dairy products. They manufacture everything from barbecue sauce (including varieties made without high-fructose corn syrup) to peanuts — the only ingredient in many of the peanut-related products.
I’m also a big fan of Kraft natural cheese, which ordinarily boasts short ingredient lists sans multi-syllabic ingredients with weird-looking names.
#3 – Hormel
To go along with the natural cheese I’ve been buying at the grocery store is a line of Hormel deli meats that, I must say, look pretty healthy, too.
Hormel Natural Choice is the name of the deli meat (or “cold cuts”) line that I’ve been buying these days.
Here are the reasons why I now swear by Hormel Natural Choice ham and turkey products when I want cold cuts:
- They contain no nitrates or added nitrates (the turkey only has a small amount of natural nitrates from the celery added in the flavoring recipe)
- There are no artificial ingredients
- There’s no MSG added
- The pork and turkey are raised without added hormones
- None of the products have sodium phosphate or other “hidden” ingredients that concern me
On top of all that, these deli meats taste pretty good, too.
Yes, these products do cost a little more than the ordinary cold cuts — I pay $3.50 for an 8-ounce packages of the Hormel Natural Choice turkey and ham, but that’s still a little better than Boar’s Head and Dietz & Watson which are, in my humble opinion, the best-tasting grocery store deli meats but also the most expensive I’m aware of.
#4 – Dole
Dole is pretty well known for its fruits and vegetables, including many healthy fruit and veggie products that are ready to eat.
Growing up, I always enjoyed the sweeter fruity products from Dole. My favorite was their cling peaches in heavy syrup. As grown-up Joshua, I now realize just how much sugar is really in that popular fruit treat.
But that doesn’t mean all Dole fruit snacks are full of sugar. In fact, most of the products I’m finding on the fruit cup aisle nowadays come in 100% natural fruit juice without additives.
Even better, each cup typically represents a proper serving of fruit.
It certainly makes eating fruits a lot easier than washing, peeling, and slicing whole fruit.
But if you like fruit in its original form, Dole offers that, too. You’ll find it in the produce section, where Dole also sells refrigerated natural fruit juices.
Shopping For Natural Foods?
- America’s Healthiest Grocery Stores
- How To Eat Organic Foods On A Budget
- Why Is Organic Food So Expensive?
- 10 Organic Foods Not Worth Buying
- How To Make Eating Organic Food More Convenient
- 9 Ways To Buy Organic Foods On A Budget
I’m a roller coaster junkie, a weather enthusiast, a frequent traveler, and a numismatist. My love for coins began when I was 11 years old. I primarily collect and study U.S. coins produced during the 20th century. I’m a member of the American Numismatic Association (ANA) and the Numismatic Literary Guild (NLG). I’ve also been studying meteorology and watching weather patterns for years. I enjoy sharing little-known facts and fun stuff about coins, weather, travel, health, food, and living green… on a budget. I work from home full-time as a journalist, reporter, and author.