Whether you are on your own or have a family, it’s helpful to learn some pointers on how to save money while eating healthy. Like many people, you probably have a food budget that you try to stay within. Get your food budget down to less than $10 a day with the helpful tips below, while still being able to eat healthy.
Have Cheap and Convenient Foods Available
Did you know that a 5 pound bag of potatoes costs only a couple dollars in most supermarkets? Potatoes sometimes get a bad rap because of the amount of starch in them, but the biggest dietary sin related to them typically comes from whatever people put on them or how they’re prepared. A baked potato can be a healthy part of a dinner (depending on what you put on it.) You may even opt for a sweet potato if you want more fiber in your meal.
Eggs are another food that are fairly nutritious and convenient. You can easily scramble some for a quick breakfast and you can also hard boil some eggs, for a high in protein snack during the day. A box of a dozen jumbo eggs is only a couple of dollars and they are easy to incorporate into an eating healthy budget.
Save Money and Simplify your Meals with Leftovers
Eating leftovers is one of the best ways to eat healthy while also keeping things simple. If you’re going to take the time to cook a meal anyway, then you may as well put twice the amount of rice, entree and veggies in the pots, so you can reheat and enjoy it another time. Utilizing storage containers for leftovers is great way to cook once and then get a couple more meals for the effort.
Buy Frozen Rather Than Canned Food
Frozen and canned foods are great for convenience because they last a long time and are there for you whenever you need them. Freezing, however, is the best method for locking in the nutrients contained in vegetables. Whenever, you’re looking for sides to go with an entree, nothing beats having a frozen bag of broccoli, green beans and carrots on hand, so you can simply pick what goes best with tonight’s dinner.
Watch for Sales
There is frequent tradeoff between simplicity and affordability. You may see prepackaged meals at the store that seem healthy, but you know you could save money by buying the foods and spices separately and making the meal at home. For maximum convenience and simplicity, you may want to check the frozen food isle for good sales on any prepared dinner meals that have healthy ingredients. Sometimes you just don’t want to cook and a good sale on a TV dinner is a great time and money saver.
Plan Your Meals Before Shopping
Doing a minimal amount of planning can help you buy everything you need to prepare healthy meals that fit within a $10 a day budget. You need to know what meals you’ll be preparing and be sure to get the foods and spices that enable you to make those meals.
Buy in Bulk
Another tip that’s helpful for meal planning is to buy in bulk. This requires having upfront cash flow to buy perhaps several weeks worth of less perishable ingredients. Having the upfront money to stock up on something you know you eat frequently when sales occur is another great way to reduce the cost of each meal. Buying more of what you need during each trip to the store, by stocking up during sales or buying in bulk, is also a great way to go to the store less often, and this is known to be healthier for your wallet or bank account.
Pack-and-Go Healthy Meals
Eating out rarely meets the definition for a healthy or an affordable meal. Planning breakfast around cheap but healthy staples such as oatmeal or eggs can get you off to a nutritious start for your day. Having something as simple as an apple with you at work can help to curb your appetite and reduce the chances of grabbing something unhealthy from the vending machine.
Remember also that many healthy foods contain fiber, which helps satisfy your hunger and fill you up longer. Most junk foods are filled with empty calories, which is why you need to eat far more of the in order to feel full. When you add in the deleterious health effects of eating a bad diet, being able to eat healthy for less than $10 a day will save you money now and medical problems down the road. Utilizing the tips above will enable you to get your food budget down to $10 or less each day.