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Healthy eating and staying on budget isn’t an impossible concept.

One of the secrets of the trade is to check out the produce section for discounted ripe or overripe* produce.

Items like browning bananas are perfect for baking (banana bread!) Softer berries make great jam, fruit leathers, and smoothies. Make salsa and bruschetta with wrinkly tomatoes and peppers!

Make guacamole or a homemade hair hydration solution with ripened avocados. Cook wilting spinach for homemade spinach dip, and ripe melons make great cold soups. Bagged salads often sell for half price when they near the expiration date, so take out any brown pieces and perk up the rest in a cold water bath before serving for dinner that night.

Stores mark down produce at different times in the day but do so most often in early mornings or late evenings. Inquire at your store about the time of day they do markdowns. For an even krazier deal, keep a lookout for overripe produce that might have a corresponding coupon! Recent produce coupons include Driscoll berries, Dole bagged salad, Nature Sweet cherry tomatoes, and Chiquita avocados.

*Always wash products thoroughly, and never eat moldy produce.