Most people spend about 10% of their take-home money on food, but it's a misconception that you can't buy quality, healthy food on a tight budget.
SparkPeople members contradict that myth by sharing the many ways they stay healthy and eat well for less.
- "When I make my shopping list, I write things like 'dinner for 3 days' and then once in the store, I see what's on sale. Also, look in the short-dated section in the chill cabinets. I quite often get something for that night's dinner or to put away in the freezer."
- "I have a co-worker who goes to the farm and buys a whole cow at one time, then pays a butcher to cut it up so she can deep-freeze it. Sometimes they go in on a cow with a friend since it gives you tons of meat at a lower price."
- "I take a list. If it isn't on the list, it doesn't go into the cart. Period. No impulse items. I also bring my little calculator to be sure that I am getting the best deal on what I need. And buy generic when possible, if it is cheaper."
- "We plan our meals for the week, so we know what we're eating and buy only what we need. The exception to this is if there is something we use a lot that is on sale, we will take advantage of the sale price. We use this also with produce-a recipe may call for red bell peppers, but if the yellow ones are cheaper, we get those instead."
- "By eating less meat, we can save our money for wild salmon and seafood and lean chicken or turkey."
- "I've stopped using coupons on most groceries because they evened out the prices on a more expensive brand or tempted me to buy things I didn't need."
- "At the store we buy from bulk bins as much as we can, even buying teas, spices, and granola. We have a coffee grinder we use to grind whole spices, so we don't get both a whole and ground version of the same spice. We reuse our own spice jars, filling it up from the bulk bins."
- "We buy quality meats and fish, but use discount grocery chains for pantry items like milk, bread, yogurt, etc."
- "Slightly limp or wilted fresh vegetables don't need to be thrown away. Sautéing them will bring them back to life."
- "I always thought I couldn't afford to buy the healthy foods that I knew I should be eating. Then, when I got serious about losing weight, I stopped buying cookies, candy, donuts, chips, and such. Lo and behold, I had enough money to buy fresh fruit, veggies, whole grain cereals and pasta and more!"
Get more money-saving tips here .
Eating Healthy on a Budget
Save Time with Big Batch Cooking
Grocery Store Steals and Tips
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