produce21. Go early – go early for the best selection or very late if you want to get a discount. Vendors would rather sell it at a discount than bring it back.

2. Know what is in season in your area and plan on buying those items.

3. Bring bags – try to remember to bring your own bags, many times vendors won’t have bags with them.

4. Always know what’s in season – not only is it cheaper to buy what’s in season it tastes better too.

5. Pre plan – some menu ideas before you go to the market. It helps you stay focused. If there is a bargain then you know what you are going to make. A bargain is a great opportunity to make meals and freeze them for a day later in the week.

6. Plan to be surprised – you might see items you have never cooked or eaten before. Take this time to ask how to prepare that item. The farmer usually has some ideas.

7. Think out side the box – many veggies have greens attached that can be sautéed or used in some dish. Look at the whole veggie and try to use it. Beets have greens that can be cut off and sautéed as a side dish.

8. Once you get home and are ready for cooking – keep it simple and enjoy the natural favors of your seasonal finds! 

How do you shop at the market ? Let me know your thoughts.