I feel lucky to have grown up in a household where exotic meals were the norm. Since my mom is Japanese, her cooking often featured flavors from a variety of Asian cuisines.
Now that I’m on my own, I try to be adventurous with my meals, too.
But the thing is: The ingredients can quickly add up.
So I started thinking about how my mom had done it. And I realized she never bought Asian products at our town’s grocery store. Instead, she made a monthly run to the Asian grocery store in a nearby city.
[Insert lightbulb moment!💡 ]
Would shopping at the Asian grocery store help me save money on specialty ingredients, and maybe even produce, too?
I decided to see for myself…
Is the Asian Grocery Store the Cheapest Grocery Store?
To test my theory, I used a simple standby meal: stir fry.
I made a shopping list and headed out to compare prices.
Here’s what I found:
How have I not been shopping at the Asian grocery store for ALL of my produce?
Everyday veggies like mushrooms and red peppers were 50% cheaper than at my regular grocery store — and specialty produce items like bean sprouts and ginger yielded an even greater discount.
Of course, the Asian grocery store probably won’t carry your favorite brand of cereal or pasture-raised eggs — but for produce or Asian ingredients, it seems like a no-brainer.
Cooking stir fry AND saving money?
What a way to make both my Japanese mom and my Jewish dad proud.
Your Turn: Have you ever shopped at the Asian grocery store?
Susan Shain, senior writer for The Penny Hoarder, is always seeking adventure on a budget. Visit her blog at susanshain.com, or say hi on Twitter @susan_shain.