I decided in late December after finally having the chance to read The Whole30: 30-Day Guide to Total health and food freedom, to do my first Whole30 in January of 2020. After I mulled over grocery lists, made sad attempts at meal plans, and made several off-hand comments about how difficult this was going to be (I know, I know, “This is NOT hard…”), John decided Whole30 would be a great idea for him as well. I’m very persuasive, obviously.
If you’re currently planning and prepping for your first Whole30, you may be in the “sticker shock” stage that I found myself just a couple weeks ago. Whole30 is a temporary shift in your diet to eliminate problematic things that may be causing food sensitivities and allergies or otherwise not making you feel your best. Unfortunately, many of those things that may not be making us feel our very best are in like, EVERY-thing. This can make buying higher quality alternatives to your normal grocery items seem very expensive.
Not to fear, you don’t need to shop exclusively at trendy health-food stores to get the supplies you’ll need to sustain yourself for the next 30 days, Aldi has our backs.
Aldi has an array of affordable produce. This is especially helpful if you’re attempting a Whole30 in a state with colder weather in the middle of the winter. Although I live in Texas with year-round affordable produce (woohoo!), I remember my days as a broke college student who could only afford the Aldi produce section during the winter months. Aldi often has “club packs” of avocados like you’d find at Sam’s Club for $2-3 less than Sam’s. They carry lots of seasonal fruits and veggies often with organic varieties as well.
There were a variety of nuts available at Aldi – the thing you want to pay attention to is whether they are dry roasted or if they may contain oils or preservatives that are not Whole30 approved.
I found two versions of pistachios: Roasted with Shells and Shelled. In the true spirit of Whole30, although the shelled option appears convenient, it can turn into a situation where you consume many more Pistachios due to the extreme convenience. Before you know it, you’ve eaten the entire bag of pre-shelled pistachios.
I found 4 or 5 Casa Mamita varieties of salsa that contained no sugar, sulfites, cornstarch, etc. They carried both a more Artisanal-feeling Organic variety as well as a variety that is not organic and seems comparable to Tostitos Salsa.
4. Hot Sauce
I found this Valentina hot sauce for just over a DOLLAR for the biggest bottle they make! Hot sauce is a great way to add some variety to your recipes later in the month when your routine may feel monotonous.
I found this GT’s Kombucha, which is Whole30 approved, for about 50 cents cheaper than I’ve found it in other stores! They have many more varieties of Kombucha but GT’s was the only variety I found at Aldi that had no added sugar and was appropriate for Whole30.
6. Barbacoa and Carnitas – convenience proteins!!
One of the daunting aspects of Whole30 is that it is so much prep from scratch. This can add hours to your kitchen prep time. I was pleasantly surprised to find this compliant Barbacoa and Carnitas that are a good convenience protein to be reheated when you’re low on time.
7. Fresh Meats
I found compliant ground beef, pork chops, stew meat, and various other cuts of beef and pork. Read labels carefully in the meat section! It seems to be of a pretty good quality, especially for the price point. I did note, however, that none of the chicken I saw was compliant as it had preservatives in it that are not Whole30 approved.
8. Bone Broth
Bone broth can extremely expensive and I’ve found many varieties in other stores that have added sugars or unapproved starches. I was pleasantly surprised to find Chicken or Beef Broth for only $2.99. If you find yourself without 6-12 hours to make your own bone broth (hahaha), this is an excellent Whole30 compliant option.
9. Chicken Sausage
I found this Never Any Country Style Chicken breakfast sausage that is Whole30 Compliant! This might make a quick addition to your breakfast before work. Pair it with fruit and potatoes or another vegetable for a balanced breakfast.
10. Olives and Peppers
The Tuscan Garden variety of black olives and Banana Pepper Rings as well as the Specially Selected Kalamata olives are Whole30 compliant. The banana pepper rings are a great find – I looked at the name brand in HEB and it contained noncompliant preservatives plus it was more than a dollar more expensive!
11. Tomato Paste and Sauce
Happy Harvest Tomato Paste and Tomato Sauce are both Whole30 compliant and at an extremely reasonable price point. Watch canned varieties of tomatoes (diced, stewed) carefully, though – I found several that were not compliant!
12. Healthy Fats and Oils
If for nothing else, go to Aldi to stock your pantry with affordable healthy fat sources! I found this Carlini light olive oil (perfect for the Mayo mentioned in the Whole30 book!) as well as several darker varieties of Olive Oil. All of the Olive Oils I looked at in my Aldi were Whole30 approved since they contained only pure olive oil! This Carlini Ghee was an awesome find at only $6.99! There were also several other Whole30 approved fat sources in this section such as coconut oil, coconut manna, and avocado oil. There were several organic versions available as well!
13. Canned Fruits
I was able to find many varieties of canned fruits packed in 100% juice with no added sugar and Whole30 compliant. I also found many varieties of canned fruit packed in syrup so read your labels in this section!!
14. Fun toppings
I found these compliant Marinated Mushrooms and Jalapeno Guacamole that could be fun to add to a meal you have on repeat. These juicy little flavor bombs will add a fun kick to even your most boring meal and they’ll keep you on your Whole30 meal plan!
15. Fruit Juices
I found a great variety of 100% juices at Aldi including pomegranate, black cherry, cranberry, and prune. All of the ones mentioned were Whole30 compliant and can be used to flavor sauces or aide in seasoning meats. To maintain the true spirit of Whole30 they should not be consumed on their own!
16. Frozen Veggies
I found many 16 oz frozen vegetable options for only 99 cents! This is a great way to get your servings of vegetables in on Whole30 without breaking the bank!
This is by no means a conclusive list of Whole30 compliant options that can be found at Aldi! I’m sure there are many other great Whole30 compliant options at your local Aldi store. The key takeaway and one of the many great lessons of Whole30 here, is to read your labels and know what it is you’re looking for or looking to avoid. Aldi also has different varieties regionally so I’d encourage you to go explore your local store today to score some health-conscious deals!
I hope this list was helpful to you! If you’d like to see more posts like this, please leave a comment to let me know!