January 22, 2013

What I buy from Azure Standard

For some reason, quite a few people asked me questions about ordering from Azure Standard the last couple weeks. A lot were about how to actually do it, but many were about what I order from them as well.

We buy a lot of things through Azure, and since the order came today, I thought I'd just highlight this months purchases.

I have compared quality and price of all similar products at my local grocery store and have determined that buying these items from Azure are the best value, at least for OUR family.

One of my larger purchases this month was 10 pounds of butter. I usually only get 2 or 3, but buying 10 brings the price down from $4.40/lb to $3.70/lb. Since butter freezes well, I thought it was worth it.

Rumiano butter is made from jersey cows that graze on pasture about 300 days of the year. It's not the best picture, but you can see the comparison to store-bought butter below. It is a much more saturated yellow - the store-bought tends to be almost white.

APPLES! A 20 pound box of organic apples is $20. That's $1 a pound! In the store, they are about $3 a pound so it's a significant savings. Also, apples are number ONE on the list of conventionally grown produce to avoid! I used to buy conventionally grown ones and take the chance until I had an interaction with a local apple farmer.
Me: Do you use pesticides on your apples?
Farmer: Yes, we have to or we just won't get a good crop. They're very good though - have a taste. (He offers me a basket and I decide to be polite and take a tiny bite and not think about the pestcide, so I choose one and raise it to take a bite...)
Farmer: Wait! Stop! Don't eat the peel! We sure don't eat the peel with all that stuff on it! Let me cut it off for you.
Me: What if I wanted to eat the peel? What would be the best way to remove the pesticide residues?
Farmer: We wash ours with bleach first!

Lesson learned: even the apple farmers won't eat the peels on their own apples. Or they choose to wash them with bleach. That right there convinced me to buy organic!

Real salt: produced with no additives, chemical or heat and contains all the naturally occurring trace minerals.
Biokleen dishwasher detergent: no phosphates, no chlorine, and it actually WORKS!
Jovial tomatoes: Just bought these to try for the first time.
Desert Essence Tea Tree shampoo: Natural, no SLS, parabens, etc.

Five pounds of almonds: For things like trail mix, homemade almond butter and smoked almonds.
Einkorn grain: The most ancient form of wheat, with significantly different gluten and gliadin content and the original 14 chromosomes instead of 42 like current varieties. Just bought this for the first time to do some experimenting.
Golden flax seeds: To grind and use in baking and granola
Organic Basmati Rice: For some reason, organic rice is hard to find here.
Ceylon Cinnamon: For my dad's health experiment! (Is he catching on to my crazy, natural-food ways??) Bulk spices are a GREAT deal from Azure!

And Desert Essence tea tree toothpaste: No flouride or SLS. Yes. We try to avoid flouride. And our teeth are wonderful.

Straus Yogurt: LOVE it! Pure whole milk yogurt at a reasonable price, with no added sugar, flavorings, artificial colors or other garbage.
Organic cremini mushrooms: I love cremini's and I can't find them locally, nor can I find organic, although I don't think it matters much for mushrooms.
Kale: Also very high for pesticide use and we don't have organic in my local store.

Organic beef jerky: Another first-time purchase. It was too expensive to keep on hand all the time, but I wanted to try it for future reference. It tastes awesome, but I wasn't thrilled about the added evaporated cane syrup.

Hain safflower mayo: A good option for when I don't have time to make my own mayo. It's somewhat of a compromise, but sometimes convenience wins.
Organic avocados: Price prohibitive locally, but organic ones through Azure are cheaper than conventionally grown ones in the store.

And lastly, a few Rudi's products. I like that Rudi's is all organic, and they have spelt products. We've tried to cut back on grain consumption, but I still need to have a few stand-by options in the freezer for quick breakfasts or school lunches. And these products are WAY to pricey at my local store.

I had a cheese picture, but don't know what happened to it. They have some really amazing cheese and it's WAY cheaper than quality cheese at the store.

A few other things I frequently purchase from Azure (but didn't this month) are:
• Bulk steel cut oats and rolled oats
• Bulk organic corn, hard red wheat, hard white wheat and soft white wheat
• Bulk almond flour
• Other seasonal fruits and vegetables: kiwi, cherries, mangoes, peppers, etc.
• Bulk shredded and chipped coconut (one of my favorites)
• Organic raisins
• Frozen blueberries, strawberries and blackberries. (While not organic, the farmer who sells to Azure tries very hard to avoid pesticides/chemical fertilizers and will only use in limited amounts and if absolutely necessary. They're also frozen quickly to avoid the use of preservative sprays.)
• Canned organic pumpkin
• Canned organic coconut milk
• Bulk arrowroot and tapioca starches
• Sunflower and pumpkin seeds

We buy many other "random" items as well, but this list covers most of what we try to keep on hand regularly.

I know the website is a little bit overwhelming. So if you're interested in ordering and feel like you need some ideas for items to try, hopefully this will help. Maybe my next post will be "How to navigate the Azure Standard website" :)


  1. Thanks for sharing!!! Lauren and I were just talking about how we would love to see a menu/grocery list of yours :) AND i am excited to order more then just one small box in the future!

  2. Haha...anytime, Stacie! I hope you enjoyed the first order...Matt has not shared his almonds with me!

  3. Hi! I love Azure too! We live in a small town with a tiny grocery store and Azure has been a lifesaver! I enjoyed your post, we buy several of the same items, but always neat to see what someone else buys because I find something else I didn't know they carried! I'll also be doing a post on what I buy from Azure after I get my order in this Thursday if you'd care to check out my blog; http://growingwests04.blogspot.com/ We follow a real food/natural life style as well.

    Also, Vitacost is another favorite resource. They currently have a better price on both the dessert essence products and the beef jerky (if you have continued to buy them, I know this post is few months old). Shipping is free on orders of $49 or more, which I can reach pretty quickly. They have really great prices and a huge selection as well.

    1. Thanks for reading! I do also order some things from Vitacost...my favorite item is the EnjoyLife chocolate chips. I will definitely check out your blog. Our drop was yesterday and I learned about several great products just from visiting with a couple other people there. Looking forward to trying Black Cherry Cream Soda next month :)