I recently discovered how wonderful the bulk bins are at my local grocery store. They're a great place to save money on your favorite foods, such as whole grains, dried fruits, and nuts, but it's also an awesome place to try new foods. Since you can buy any size quantity in the bulk section, you can sample and experiment with new ingredients for the fraction of the price of buying a full-sized product.

Here are 3 super nutritious and tasty foods that I recently discovered in the bulk section:

Nutritional yeast
As you can probably tell from its name, nutritional yeast is packed with nutrition, particularly B-vitamins, folic acid, zinc, selenium, and protein. Yes, protein! A one-ounce serving of nutritional yeast has 80 calories and 14 grams of protein. Who knew? Nutritional yeast is dry and flaky with a cheesy, nutty, and savory flavor, so it adds a wonderful richness to sauces, soups, mashed potatoes, polenta, and other dishes. I love using it to make "cheese" sauces.

Wheat germ
Wheat germ is also loaded with nutrients. An once of wheat germ contains 4 grams of fiber, 8 grams of protein, and it's high in iron, potassium, vitamins B1 and B3, and vitamin E as well magnesium and zinc. Wheat germ has a slightly nutty flavor, so it's tasty mixed into oatmeal, cereal, smoothies, or baked goods. You can also sprinkle it over yogurt or salads for some added nutty flavor. Wheat germ will go rancid quickly, so be sure to keep it refrigerated.

Millet
Fluffy like rice, millet is a wonderful grain that can be enjoyed as a breakfast porridge, ground into bread and muffin recipes, or tossed with your favorite veggies and a little dressing for an easy side dish. For only about 100 calories for a 1/2 cup serving (cooked), millet is also a great alternative to rice or potatoes.

Read Tina’s daily food and fitness blog, Carrots ‘N’ Cake.

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