6 cheaper alternatives to trendy superfoods

Turns out you don’t need to spend those precious dollars on the latest superfoods after all! Why? Because there are plenty of brilliant, nutritious and cheaper alternatives to try instead. Why not spend the money you save on a holiday, new outfit or maybe just a really fancy cocktail on Friday night?

Note: We love to use lots of different ingredients here at CHEFGOOD, so we definitely do dabble in superfoods, but we also believe in the value of ‘ordinary’ food too! You’ll find lots of ingredients from BOTH categories in our weekly menus.

Let’s get started! (All prices are approximate)

Swap kale for broccoli

Kale: $4.50 a bunch
Broccoli: $1.35 each

Unless you were a total foodie, you probably hadn’t heard of kale up until a few years back. Kale is everywhere now and is often hailed for its claimed superfood status. So yes, dark green leafy vegetables are amazingly nutritious, but is kale better than the rest?

Putting it bluntly, no, it isn’t. In fact, the lesser-lauded broccoli contains just as much of the good stuff as kale does. We’re talking iron, calcium, vitamins B6 and A, magnesium and fibre. So while you probably wouldn’t want to chuck a head of broccoli in your morning green smoothie, try it in a stir-fry, steamed as a side or maybe in a hearty soup.

Swap chia seeds for mackerel

Chia seeds: $3.33/100g
Mackerel: $0.58/100g

Look we love chia as much as the next foodie, but these little seeds can really add up. Why are chia seeds so popular? It’s all down to their plant-based omega-3 fatty acids. To put it simply, omega-3s lower blood fat (blood cholesterol and blood triglycerides) and they also reduce inflammation in the body. This is important as both these things are underlying causes of cardiovascular disease.

The omega-3s in chia seeds aren’t unique though, you can also find them in oily fish like mackerel. Just 200g of mackerel will provide you with two grams of omega-3s, that’s more than double what you’d see in a typical portion (around three grams) of chia seeds. Per 100g, the mackerel is a whole lot cheaper too!

Swap salmon for sardines

Salmon: $30/kg
Sardines: $6/kg

We’re well-known fans of salmon here at CHEFGOOD, and we haven’t been shy about sharing it. Just like chia seeds and mackerel, salmon is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids. Your weekly salmon habit might be draining the coffers though, so is there an alternative out there?

Of course! Aside from mackerel, which we mentioned above, another great option for getting your omega-3s is sardines! You can buy them fresh and pop them on the grill, or if you’re saving for summer in Europe, buying them tinned will help. Tinned fish contains just as much omega-3 as it’s fresh counterpart, plus they don’t need to be cooked!

Swap coconut water for water

Coconut water: $5/L
Water: Free from the tap!

You’ve probably heard that coconut water is excellent for hydration, but so is plain old tap water! We’re lucky enough to live in a beautiful country where tap water is perfectly safe and healthy to drink, so let’s make the most of it.

Swap quinoa for lentils

Quinoa: $10/kg
Lentils: $4.50/kg

Whether you pronounce it correctly or not, there is no denying that quinoa is an excellent staple of plant-based protein and good-for-you fibre. But did you know that the humble lentil beats out quinoa on both of these? Yes, you heard right!

While quinoa contains around 5g of fibre per cup, lentils triple that with 16g in that same amount! And you’ll also find that lentils contain a whopping double the amount of protein as quinoa. All that for less than half the cost of quinoa – splendid.

Swap goji berries for cranberries

Goji berries: $5.30/100g
Cranberries: $1.46/100g

Goji berries come to us by way of Chinese medicine where they are used to boost immunity because of their high antioxidant content. But it turns out we had a little red fruit in front of us the whole time with similar benefits: cranberries.

A study has shown cranberries have the highest level of phenols (antioxidants) out of 20 popular fruits. But remember that you want your cranberries as unprocessed as possible, be on the lookout for added sugar especially!


Are you feeling hungry but can’t be bothered with the whole shopping and cooking thing?

We get you.

In fact, we’ll do it all for you. All you need to do is click here and choose your week’s delicious, tasty and nutritious meals.

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