To do organic or not to do organic, that is the question!
If you have ever found yourself browsing through organic and non-organic products online or in the store, you’ve most likely wondered what it’s all about and what exactly you should purchase.
The organic foods definition, according to the USDA organic label, states that, “USDA certified organic foods are grown and processed according to federal guidelines addressing, among many factors, soil quality, animal raising practices, pest and weed control and use of additives. Organic producers rely on natural substances and physical, mechanical, or biologically based farming methods to the fullest extent possible.”
Are organic foods healthier than non-organic foods? This seems to be a frequent question. Though the organic food business and the reasons for buying organic can sometimes seem confusing, we’re here to talk about the pros of buying organic and offer some delicious ideas for organic recipes, too.
At Bob's Red Mill, we’re dedicated to providing organic and natural foods to our customers. Read on to learn about the benefits of switching to organic foods and produce (and find some recipe inspiration along the way).
5 Benefits of Buying Organic
When it comes to buying organic vs non-organic food and produce, you might find your head spinning! If you’ve ever asked yourself, “Is organic better?” this article is for you! Here are five of the top benefits of buying organic.
#1 Avoid Hormones, Antibiotics and GMO
Because antibiotics, drugs and growth hormones can be passed into products through animal feed and because convention livestock can be fed antibiotics to protect against illness, opting for organic products means that you are choosing products raised without antibiotics and synthetic hormones.
#2 Fewer Pesticides and Artificial Fertilizers
When ingredients like fruits, grains and veggies are grown organically, it means that they are grown without the use of unnatural pesticides and artificial fertilizers.
#3 More Healthy Fats and Nutrients
According to Time Magazine, when it comes to meat and milk, organic products can have roughly 50% more omega-3 fatty acids than products that are produced conventionally. This may be in part due to the diet of the livestock as well as how it is raised.
#4 Help the Environment
When people ask is organic food healthy, the answer is yes — but it’s not just healthy for you. It is healthy for the environment, too. Organic farming works to preserve the soil and helps to keep chemicals out of the ecosystem. What this means is that wildlife — birds, bees, livestock — all benefit.
#5 Support Farmers
Buying organic produce, especially at the local level, means that you’re supporting farmers and their future. As opposed to buying commercially grown, non-organic products, organic produce from places like your local farmers’ market connects you to the grower — and typically means an incredible product grown with a whole lot of love!
A Sampling of Bob’s Red Mill Organic Products
At Bob’s Red Mill, we carry a wide variety of organic products. From sugars and seeds to flours, here is a sampling of some of our favorites, and a few recipes to go along with them, too. Organic Bumbleberry Crumble bars, anyone?
Organic Chia Seeds
Our Organic Chia Seeds are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, protein and fiber. They can be added to smoothies, hot cereal, baked goods and popcorn. You can also use them to make chia seed jam to serve with your morning toast! Try this recipe for a Spinach and Strawberry Chia Smoothie, just make sure to purchase all organic ingredients (almond milk, spinach, plain yogurt, strawberries and honey) if you’re trying to make the smoothie fully organic.
Organic Pumpkin Seeds
These Organic Pumpkin Seeds, also known as pepitas, are fresh and crunchy! They are untoasted and unsalted, which means it’s up to you to prepare them however you’d like. Pumpkin seeds contain essential fatty acids and are a wonderful source of magnesium, iron and plant-based protein. If you’re interested in using this organic ingredient in your baked goods, try this delicious recipe for Protein Packed No-Bake Granola Bars.
Organic Unbleached White All Purpose Flour
Bob’s Red Mill Organic Unbleached White All Purpose Flour is a premium baking flour freshly milled from certified organic, hard red wheat. You can use this unbleached, unenriched product for everything from biscuits to cake! We’re fans of these Organic Bumbleberry Crumble Bars, which were adapted from a blueberry bars recipe via Smitten Kitchen, and use our organic flour with any combination of blackberries, raspberries and wild blueberries. Cut them into squares and serve with a good cup of tea.
Organic Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
Our Gluten Free Organic Old Fashioned Rolled Oats are a fan favorite among our gluten free and organic loving customers. These oats are a good source of soluble fiber to help keep your digestive system on track and might prevent the risk of heart disease. They can be used for cookies and hot cereal or stirred into just about any baked good. For a fun baking experiment, try this Oatmeal Mantou bread. Mantou bread is a traditional Chinese steamed bun with a “cloud-like” texture. In this version, the oats add a bit of extra sweetness and texture. The bread can be enjoyed a few different ways (dipped in sweetened, evaporated milk or with jam) but any way you slice or dip it, it’s delicious! Again, opt for all-organic ingredients if you’re aiming for an all-organic bread. If you’re looking for an option on-the-go, try one of our organic instant oatmeal cups.
Organic High Fiber Pancake and Waffle Mix
If it’s an organic breakfast you’re searching for, our Organic Pancake and Waffle Mix makes mornings a breeze! It’s made with stone ground whole wheat pastry flour, Scottish Oatmeal, flaxseed meal, oat bran, wheat germ, baking powder and just a hint of cane sugar for a bit of sweetness. Follow the cooking instructions on the back of the package for both pancakes and waffles and top with organic pure maple syrup and organic butter for a truly special morning treat. Fresh blueberries or sliced strawberries on top are always an added (and encouraged) bonus!
Organic Coconut Sugar
Our Organic Coconut Sugar is a sweet, delicious and organic alternative to many other sugars out there. It’s made from the nectar of coconut palm tree blossoms and has a mellow caramel flavor that makes it perfect for cookies, breads and cakes. It can even be used to top your oatmeal! If you’re a snickerdoodle lover, try this sweet and cinnamon filled recipe for a Paleo Snickerdoodle Loaf. It’s made with our Paleo Baking Flour, Organic Coconut Sugar, ground cinnamon, baking soda, salt, eggs, almond milk, coconut oil and vanilla extract. The best part? The topping made from coconut sugar and cinnamon! It’s a divine treat for breakfast or over afternoon tea (or any time of day, really).
To create our Organic Cornmeal, we grind 100% whole grain organic corn for a lightly textured meal that can be used for cornbread, cornmeal mush and pizza crust. We use the highest quality yellow corn to give you the vital nutrients of the corn germ and endosperm (with zero saturated fat). Use this cornmeal alongside our Organic Unbleached White All-Purpose Flour in this recipe for Bob’s Red Mill Bakery English Muffin Bread. It’s a fluffy white bread sold at the Bob's Red Mill Whole Grain Store and is so yummy with jam and a mug of coffee in the morning!
If you’ve ever found yourself wondering “is organic food better?” we hope this article has helped shed some light on the organic foods movement and offer some tasty and nutrition-packed suggestions for both products and recipes.
What are your thoughts on organic vs. non-organic products? And do you have any favorite organic recipes to share with us in the comments below?
If you’ve used any of our products to create something organic and wonderful, we’d love to hear about it!
From all of us at Bob’s Red Mill, wishing you a happy and healthy day ahead. Thank you for reading, and we look forward to hearing what sort of organic creations you come up with!