How To Eat Well On A Budget
Time and time again people tell me it is expensive to eat healthy.
I certainly don’t agree and we eat organic!
It absolutely is possible to eat healthily and cheaply.
So here are my top 10 tips on how to eat well on a budget
- Plan your weeks intake – make a plan for the week, then make a shopping list from the plan and stick to it. In your plan include quick and easy meals that you are familiar with and try to use similar ingredients in different ways to prevent wastage. E.g. If you need coriander for a dish but won’t use the whole bunch, include it in another dish that week.
- Buy fruit and veg in season – they are cheaper and taste better. Don’t buy fresh blueberries in the middle of winter when they are $8 or $10 a punnet, buy fruit in season like apples, mandarins or oranges! And don’t buy stone fruit when it first appears in Spring at $12 a kilo, wait a few weeks when they come down to $2 or $3 a kilo! Check what is in season before you plan your weeks menu but also be flexible – for example if the broccoli is scarce and the price goes up, use an alternative green vegetable in place.
- Buy ingredients when they are on special. E.g. Small tins of tuna are often on special for $1 a can vs the usual price of $2. Buy up when on special as it will keep in your pantry for a long time.
- Buy cheaper cuts of meat – the leanest meat you can buy is eye fillet, but at over $40 a kilo it is incredibly expensive, so buy a cheaper cut of lean steak – and 2 skinless chicken breasts costs as much as a whole chicken. So buy the chicken and use all of it. Including saving the bones to make stock or soup.
- Learn to cook with legumes as they are incredibly cheap and incredibly healthy. Have at least one meat free meal a week and use legumes to replace some of the meat in other dishes. E.g. Chilli con carne
- Don’t buy too many individual serves of food – you pay extra for all of that packaging. E.g. Yoghurt – it is cheaper to buy the larger containers and portion out rather than individual portions.
- Check if prices in other stores nearby are cheaper than the supermarket. E.g the Asian grocer next to our supermarket sells many things cheaper like sweet chilli sauce, soy sauce, herbs and spices. Often fruit and vegetable shops have great specials out the front, plus I find their produce to be much fresher, so lasts longer than the supermarkets.
- Cook from scratch as much as possible rather than using pre-made sauces (apart from tomato based pasta sauce which is reasonably priced) and dressings. Use simple marinades like olive oil, lemon juice and herbs or soy sauce, garlic and ginger
- Watch the portion size you are serving up to yourself. Protein foods like meat are the most expensive part of the meal and most people have too large a portion. Red meat and chicken limit to 100-120 grams or less. Maximum fish portions are 120 grams if it is a fatty fish like salmon, or 150 grams for a white fish
- Make your own healthier snacks. E.g Make a muesli bar, slice up and freeze rather than buying a box of muesli bars. Make your own dips like hommus – it is very cheap to make.
These are my top tips, but if you have any please leave them in the comments section below