Keeping a Low Grocery Budget #5

Hard white wheat berries, hard white flour, flour from hard red wheat berries, unbleached store bought white flour

Part 5 of my 10 part series on The Top 10 Things I Don’t Pay For is on bread!

If you’ve been following my blog, you know that I grew up in Germany where they sell real bread, freshly baked each day at mom and pop style bakeries. Their bread is FABULOUS! I love a crusty, crunchy, flavorful bread. We moved back to the States from Germany in 1988 and one of the things I missed the most was their bread.

In fact, when I studied abroad (in Germany, of course) during college, I bought bread and carried loaves back to the States in my suitcase!! 🙂

Anyway, I went over to the little grocery store to price bread today. Bread costs anywhere from $1.09 a loaf (for essentially plastic bread) to $3.69 for Sara Lee 100% Whole Wheat bread.

According to blog, these are the ingredients in Sara Lee Soft & Smooth 100% Whole Wheat bread:

Enriched Bleach Flour [Wheat Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Folic Acid], Water, Whole Grain [Whole Wheat Flour, Brown Rice Flour (Rice Flour, Rice Bran Including Germ)], Sugar, Wheat Gluten, Yeast, Cellulose, Contains 2% or Less of Each of Following: Calcium Sulfate, Soybean Oil, Salt, Dough Conditioners (May Contain One or More of the Following: Mono- and Diglycerides, Ethoxylated Mono- and Diglycerides, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Calcium Peroxide, DATEM, Ascorbic Acid, Azodicarbonamide, Enzymes), Guar Gum, Calcium Propionate (Preservative), Distilled Vinegar, Butter (Cream, Salt), Yeast Nutrients (Monocalcium Phosphate, Calcium Sulfate, Ammonium Sulfate and/or Calcium Carbonate), Corn Starch, Natural Flavor, Vitamin D3, Soy Lecithin, Soy Flour.

Besides being full of ingredients I can’t pronounce, it’s also full of sugar and lacking in fiber. I couldn’t replicate this recipe if I wanted to.

Bleh. That’s what I have to say about most of the commercially prepared breads for sale in traditional American grocery stores. So I make my own using only ingredients I can pronounce! 🙂

Not only does homemade bread have real, healthy ingredients, it’s also cheaper! I buy my wheat berries in bulk. A 50 lb bag of wheat berries cost me $20 in January and yields upwards of 225 cups of flour.

I make 5 loaves of bread with about 13 cups of flour.


  1. It's crazy that the bread you listed the ingredients for is called 100% whole wheat bread, and yet whole wheat flour is NOT the first ingredient. Isn't there some sort of marketing law against that?
  2. I would love to find wheat berries for the price you mentioned. Have you ever used your blender to crack oat groats for steel cut oats, or is this bad for your blender? I'm just wondering since I don't have the original papers/instructions since I found my mill on CL for a steal.
  3. Great series! I forgot to go back and read the other posts when you shared it before. Of course, now I have some weekend reading.
  4. Rachel- have you contacted Phyllis Stanley in CoSprings? She's off Woodmen, not far from the church. Here's her website:

    I don't know what her prices are now, but that's around what I paid for Wheat Montana from her before we moved. I got my last bags at an Amish bulk food store in Central Missouri. It's quite a lot cheaper than what I had been paying in Iowa, but it's not organic and all I could find here was organic. I'm going again in July - I hope their prices are still that low.

    I have used the blender on my Bosch for oats once or twice. We're not big oatmeal eaters though so I don't do it a lot. I think any grain can be cracked in the Bosch blender. But I do have a coffee grinder just for flax seeds. I don't do anything else in that little coffee grinder.

    Hope you're all doing well! :-)
  5. Thanks for responding, Michelle. My friend called Phyllis and her policy is not to sell grain to people who didn't buy the equipment from her, so I'm outta luck with that. Hoping to make a stop at Wheat Montana during a road trip and stock up a lot.
  6. I have tried to make my own bread, but I cannot get it to taste decent. My husband is very picky and is accustomed to store bought bread. Do you have any recipes that you can recommend for me? I would be so so happy if I could make bread that tastes wonderful.

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