Five Things I Buy at the 99 Cent Store

You can’t count on the 99 Cent Store to actually have anything that’s on your shopping list. Merchandise changes as frequently as I change my underwear (once a week) (kidding). That said, in the past few weeks, I’ve been going specifically to the 99 Cent Store looking for a few items, and, for the most part, I’ve been lucky because they’ve had them in stock. I’m aware that my luck with change any day now (probably as soon as I publish this blog), but that’s a risk that’s worth taking, just because nothing at the 99 Cent Store costs more than a buck.

Here’s my list of healthy items that I’ve been buying at the 99 Cent Store:

1) V8. I love vegetable juice!

V8 is nutritious and delicious (although a bit of an acquired taste, I suppose), but it does have one major problem: it’s very high in sodium. So I only buy the low sodium variety.

All three varieties of V8 have 70 calories and are fat-free, but Low Sodium V8 only has 200mgs of sodium (8% of your daily value), compared to 600mgs (25%) for Original V8 and 690mgs (29%) for Spicy Hot. So stick with Low Sodium!

2) Beef Jerky. Another high sodium food. I love it as a pre- or post-workout protein fix, and the 99 Cent Store has single serving bags that are perfect to grab and go.

Jerky commonly comes in bigger bags that have 3 servings in them, but once I rip open a bag, I have trouble stopping at one serving. Since most jerky servings have around 90 calories and only a couple grams of fat, it wouldn’t be the end of the world if I ate more than one serving, except for that pesky sodium. On average, a serving of jerky has about a third of your day’s worth of sodium, and that’s a lot. And that’s why I like these 99 Cent Store single serving bags… they eliminate the temptation to eat more!

3) Tuna. Another high-protein, low-fat, low-calorie food. The 99 Cent Store has grocery store brands, but cheaper. I buy the kind that’s packed in water, not oil – they’re frequently labeled ‘light.’

I saw these boxed fat-free tuna salad and cracker combos the other day, and bought a couple… but haven’t tried one yet. Have you?

4) Gum. For after you eat jerky or tuna.

Of all the items on this list, gum is the one that’s always at the 99 Cent Store. I like to have a few packs lying around, and I always take gum with me when I go to parties where I might be tempted to graze for hours on end. Instead, I enjoy a plate of food, and then pop a piece of gum in my mouth.

5) Pregnancy Tests.

You know, for my bitches.

5) Coconut Water. The real #5 on my list is coconut water, which I’ve only recently begun drinking as a post-workout beverage.

Coconut water is nature’s Gatorade. An 11.2-ounce serving has 60 calories and is loaded with electrolytes, including more potassium than a banana (and 15 times more potassium than sports drinks). Potassium is great for blood pressure and helping your muscles relax.

I’ve only begun seeing coconut water at the 99 Cent Store, but since this exact brand costs nearly $2 at other stores, I’m hoping I’ll continue to find it at the 99 Cent Store in the future!

What healthful items do you like to buy at the 99 Cent Store? Share in the comments section!

Keep it up, David!

PS – I added a new building yesterday to my Skyscraper Collection, and featured it on my Facebook page. Are you following me on Facebook? You should be! Click here to “like” me!


23 Responses to Five Things I Buy at the 99 Cent Store

  1. Michael says:

    I always buy the Wyler’s Light (singles to go!) drink mixes. I found some new ones Crush (grape and Strawberry)they have a great taste and they are only 5 calories.

    • David says:

      I used to love those! And you’re right – 99 Cent Store stocks tons of them!

    • Deb Judge says:

      We have Dollar Tree or Dollar General stores, but no 99 Cent Stores in Iowa. I can’t find the Grape or Strawberry Wylers Light Singles to go ANYWHERE around here. Walgreens used to have the bonus boxes (10 ct vs 8 ct) for a buck, but I haven’t seen any there since late spring/early summer. Have they discontinued them?

      • David says:

        Good question! I haven’t tried Wyler’s brand, I don’t think. I used to buy the Crystal Light version all the time, though. Can anyone help Deb out?

      • Mike says:

        Yes they still sale them but they are a seasonal product. I guess certain times of the year they stop selling them that why I always stock up. I think Walmart sales them year around.

      • Mike says:

        No, They still sale them but they are seasonal and certain times of the year you cannot find them.

  2. I’ve eaten the Brunswick Tuna salad several times. It’s not *my* tuna salad, but it’ll get you by in a pinch. I keep them in my desk at work for those days where I can’t manage to escape for lunch or the weather isn’t cooperating or I’m just too dang lazy to pack something.

  3. Andie says:

    V8 is actually better than a banana for potassium, too. I sometimes drink the full-sodium/regular after a hard workout – much better for you than Gatorade.

  4. Holly says:

    In my neck of the woods, they are dollar stores, but you can really find some great deals from time to time! I love V8!!! That stuff is seriously addictive and a great post-workout drink. Um, and the pregnancy tests for your bitches…HAHAHAHAHA!!!! Side note: I tried the stair machine at the gym and I must be doing something wrong because it was so slow and I felt like my feet were too big for the steps. BOO!

    • David says:

      That’s awesome that you tried the StairMaster – it takes a while to get used to. I suggest trying again, and playing with the speed until you find one that’s challenging but doable. As for your feet, I don’t know what to tell you about that one – I’m size 13 (sometimes 14) shoe! Was it the kind of StairMaster I like, that looks like a mini-escalator, or the other kind (which I don’t like at all) that has two pedals that go up and down?

  5. Lucie says:

    Here’s an easy peasy soup recipes I made up late this winter–32 oz low-sodium V-8, 1 pound lean ground sirloin browned w/1 package low-sodium taco seasoning, combine that with the V-8 juice & add whatever vegetable you have on hand–I’ve done spinach, sweet potatoes, etc. So good & quick!

  6. Jessa says:

    I actually buy the larger bottles of V8 on sale, with a coupon, for a dollar per 64oz bottle. I use them in my spaghetti sauce, soups, in place of water to make rice with taco seasoning and veggies, in bbq sauce, besides virgin bloody marys. You could always buy the larger bags of beef jerky, and save the single serve bags, if they’re resealable, and divide up the large bag into single servings for later. I’ve become quite thrifty after following the Southern Savers website, but I am not familiar with any coupon sites for your neck of the woods. Nice finds at the 99cent store!

  7. Arlene Hittle says:

    I don’t usually hit up the 99-cent store, but your post has persuaded me to take a peek. I’d love some cheap beef jerky.

    On a side note, I’ve always wondered just how accurate a 99-cent pregnancy test can be when the ones at the drug store cost upwards of $9.

    • David says:

      Maybe they’re 1/9th as accurate?

      • Heather says:

        They (‘they’) say they are just as good, but #1 you can’t pee on them-you have to get a cup, and #2 while the few times i used it And I was NOT pregnant they were accurately negative, the time i WAS pregnant…it was still negative. And cvs brand ept was positive stunningly, immediatly, instantly as soon as I peed on it.

  8. susan says:

    We don’t have 99-cent stores in Alaska, but (as always) I love your humor “You know, for my bitches” 🙂

  9. Our 99cent stores only have liquidated items or weird off brand-probably have lead in them. 😦

  10. vanessa says:

    “you know, for my bitches”

    not bad for my first visit to your site.
    subscribing ASAP.

  11. Nurse Karen says:

    I can attest to being diligent at Reading the Expiration Dates on the labels at the 99 Cents Store, as last year I grew careless, and had purchased a can of tuna that had expired in 1999…yikes. As a side note, thank you, Darling David, for taking such good care of your Loyal Bitches. My pregnancy test was Positive. Do you have a designated nursery? KIDDING! [my pregnancy test was positive in 2003, hee hee! and Heather, I was so happy that I peed in thirteen more cups just to be sure !!! lol]. Thanks for the belly-laugh today, and KEEP IT UP DAVID!

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