Eating healthy on a budget
When you are on a tight budget, meal planning and grocery shopping has its challenges. It can be even more challenging when you are on a budget and following a healthy eating plan. Right?
Wrong! I believe you and your family can eat healthy on a tight budget. So, I thought I would give you a few hints and suggestions to help you when planning your healthy meals.
- Buy fresh produce when it’s in season and freeze it.
Fresh produce is always great, but the cost can add up fast. Stick with buying what’s currently in season and consider stocking up when you find a good deal.
- Look for sales and stock up.
If you have common items that you buy for your meals, then stock up the pantry or freezer when the items are on sale.
- Try less expensive cuts of meat.
You can still enjoy meat, even when you’re on a tight budget. Look for less expensive cuts of meat, like chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts, and try different cooking methods, like the slow cooker, to make tougher cuts of meat tender and juicy.
- Embrace whole grains and beans.
Beans and whole grains, like quinoa, freekeh and brown rice are an inexpensive and tasty way to bulk up meals.
- Plan and prep meals ahead.
Whether it’s veggies for the week, tomorrow’s breakfast, lunches or dinners, prepping food in advance is a good way to make sure you’re eating what’s in the fridge and minimises waste.
- Broaden your culinary horizons.
Cuisines, like Mexican and Indian, rely heavily on inexpensive ingredients, like beans and rice.
- Keep an organised fridge and pantry.
Leftovers are always great, but it totally defeats the purpose if they get lost in the back of the fridge. Label leftovers and keep your fridge organised to help minimize food waste.
- Repurpose leftovers.
If you don’t like eating the same meal over and over, consider repurposing leftovers into an entirely new and delicious meal.
- Go to the farmers’ market at the end of the day.
Depending on where you live, farmers’ markets may or may not save you money during regular hours. Consider visiting the market at the end of the day, when you could very likely score some great deals. This can also work for larger supermarket chains; Coles and Woolworths often mark down fresh produce towards the end of the day, particularly on weekends.
- Shop at ethnic markets.
Consider checking out local ethnic markets. Not only are you likely to find a bargain on certain products, you’ll also find some interesting ingredients.
So there you have it, with some planning and preparation you and your family can start eating healthy on a budget.