SNAP Challenge Gourmet: Homemade Muesli

After yesterday’s post reacting to the increase in the cost and environmental benefits of oats, I thought I’d better share my ‘recipe’ for homemade muesli, along with a breakdown of prices.

Ingredients

Oats 1.5 lb .89/lb $1.33
Raisins .5 lb 3.59/lb $1.80
Sunflower Seeds .3 lb 3.99/lb $1.20
Bran Flakes .25 lb 1.75/lb $ .40
Corn Flakes .25 lb 1.75/lb $ .40
Wheat Germ .1 lb 2.49/lb $ .25
Flax Meal .1 lb 2.69/lb $ .27
Total 3 lb 1.88/lb $5.65

Date pieces were $2.79 but the bin was empty.

Just mix everything up in a big bowl and then put it in storage containers. Refrigerate or freeze the sunflower seeds, wheat germ and flax meal that you don’t use.

The bran and corn flakes are boxes of store brand cereal. The flax meal and wheat germ were from Bob’s Red Mill, found in the cooler section of the hippie/yuppy aisles. The rest is from the bulk bins. I’m really lucky to live two blocks from a none upscale grocery with bulk bins and a great hippie/yuppy section.

The good news is that the 20 cent per pound increase in oat prices at the pump only raised the price of muesli by 10 cents a pound. The bad news is that my Fred Meyer stopped carrying non-organic raisins in the bulk bin, so my raisin cost went up around a dollar a pound. (Bulk organic oats are $1.79)

IMG_0087

Comparison shopping

Fred Meyer Muesli $.2.61
Bulk Bin Muesli $3.79 200%
Trader Joe’s Blueberry Muesli $3.79 200%

Fun additions for the 1%

Dried Cranberries $3.79 139%
Dried Currants $4.19
Granola $3.49
Almond Pieces $6.49
Pumpkin Seeds $5.79
Dried Blueberries $14.99

I don’t understand the high price for dried blueberries. Blueberries are expensive, because they are perishable and labor intensive to handle. Dried blueberries are neither. They are presumably from the part of the harvest that doesn’t make the grade to sell fresh. So the high price on the supply side is puzzling. And the flavor profile of dried fruit tends to converge on a similar tangy sweetness. So I don’t see how the product differentiates it’s self from currants or craisins enough to justify a $10/lb price premium. If somebody can explain that one to me, I’d love to understand the market for dried blueberries.

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About Marc Brazeau

Free lance cultural attaché. Writing at REALFOOD.ORG.

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