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10 Tips for Eating on a Budget

 

10 Tips for Eating on a Budget

The never ending question from my kids — “Mom what’s for dinner?” With Uber Eats and GrubHub among some options for delivery, it is so easy to fall into the habit of eating out. But looking at our credit card bill shows how much one family can overspend on this luxury. Not only does it hurt one’s bank account, it also hurts our waste line and instills bad eating habits for our kids.

With some planning we have been able to not only save money eating out, but also eat healthier. Here 10 tips to eating healthy on a budget.

1. Budget for groceries.

What’s the first essential step to eating healthy on a budget? You have to budget for groceries. Every. Single. Month.

2. Plan your meals.

Meal planning—it’s healthy for your body and your budget. And the best meal plans happen in the kitchen. Start with what you already have, look at recipes, and keep your store’s sales ad handy.

3. Make a grocery list (and stick to it).

Once you know your meals for the week and what ingredients you already have to make those healthy recipes happen, you should write out a grocery list with everything else you need.

The best grocery lists are organized by aisle, or at least by store section. This keeps you from going back and forth while shopping.

4. Cook at home.

Have a busy week ahead? Here is a great go to healthy crockpot recipe.

Crockpot Chicken Tacos

Ingredients
1 ¼ lb boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 - Tablespoons taco seasoning
1 -16 oz jar of salsa
¼ cup cilantro leaves
8 flour or corn tortillas
1 cup pico de gallo
1 cup guacamole
½ cup sour cream

Instructions

  1. Place chicken breasts in slow cooker with taco seasoning and pour salsa on top.
  2. Cover and cook on HIGH for 3-4 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours. Shred the chicken with two forks and stir in cilantro.
  3. Divide the chicken between the tortillas and top with additional ingredients.

Compare grocery stores.

Loyalty is a super important quality in friends and employees, but don’t let your loyalty—or your habits—keep you going back to a grocery store you can’t afford. Look online at store promotions. Ask friends where they go and why.

6. Use coupons and apps.

Whether you clip them or click them, don’t forget the power of coupons! Most supermarkets have mobile apps full of coupons to help you score some great savings.

7. Shop weekly sales ads.

Don’t forget those sales ads (which you can probably find inside those store apps too). And when you find a coupon to use on something already on sale that week, that’s grocery-buying gold.

Fresh meats, veggies and fruits are especially great items to use sales ads on. If brussels sprouts are not on sale this week but green beans are, then you’re eating green beans with your baked chicken.

8. Stop buying processed food.

Processed food. We’re talking about things like chicken nuggets, pizza pockets, refined sugars, boxed mashed potatoes, frozen dinners, prepackaged meals, cookies, potato chips and other salty snacks

9. Drink more water.

Even “healthy” fruit juices can be packed full of sugar.

10. Buy in bulk.

Bulk purchasing isn’t always the best way to save—but sometimes it is. Before buying something in bulk, ask yourself these four questions:

  1. Can I eat it before it’ll go bad?
  2. Is the price per ounce cheaper?
  3. Do I have space for this larger quantity?
  4. Will I really use it?

If you can answer yes to all of these questions, then go for it! Buy those things in bulk so you can save in bulk.

Eating Healthy on a Budget Is Possible

Eating healthy on a budget is possible. You just have to be intentional, plan ahead, and stay strong—with your budget and your body.

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Ann-Marie Ferguson