Five Ways to Save Money on Food

How to save money on food without risks to your health could be a pretty complicated task for plenty of people today.

When money is tight, it can be difficult to take care of expenses and put food on the table. Small and large families alike can experience this kind of difficulty. And it can be tough to know what to do to save money on food.

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Thankfully, it’s possible to stay on budget and eat well. Just follow these easy tips!

Eat Food Rich in Protein and Fiber

  • The key to getting the most bang for every food dollar is to spend it on foods that will nourish and sustain.

Empty calories such as white bread, chips, snack and fast foods may be cheap, but have far less nutritional value than foods such as beans, rice, bananas and other legumes.

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  • The price point is not much different, and the body will work better, longer on the more nutritious foods.

Other terrific foods that are rich in appetite sustaining power are other legumes such as lentils and garbanzo beans, and hearty whole grains like barley, oatmeal, and bulgur.

The Benefits of Beans and Rice

  • Beans and rice may take longer to prepare, but they will keep bodies feeling full longer, thanks to their power-packed protein and fiber content.
The American Heart Association recommend women under the age of 50 to consume at least 25 grams of fiber per day. A single cup of cooked red beans packs a whopping 12 grams of fiber.

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Dried beans may be cheaper by the pound, but also require a lot of time and energy to prepare and cook. The actual cost between dried and canned beans may be almost even considering the hours on the stove that dry beans require for cooking. To save money look for deals on cans of black, red and navy beans at the store.

Cooking Tip: Be sure to rinse the beans well before eating them. Many are preserved in salt, and this helps reduce the inadvertent consumption of extra sodium.

Plan Meals Ahead and Eat and Freeze the Leftovers

  • One batch of beans and rice can turn into several additional meals.

After cooking, wait for the beans and rice to cool and then pack into meal sized freezer bags. Loading the freezer will make for a very easy meal down the road.

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  • Plus, having a full freezer can help a refrigerator run more efficiently, which could help reduce energy costs.

 

Always Have a Snack Before Going to the Store

It’s a simple idea, but it’s often easy to forget. Food shopping while hungry can be a recipe for overspending. Everything will look delicious, and it will be all too easy to overspend on unnecessary foods.
  • Even having a small snack, such as a glass of milk or a bowl of cereal can help curb hunger long enough to make it to the store and back. Just be sure to have something with some protein.

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A bag of potato chips will not stave hunger for very long.

Make a Menu and Only Purchase the Necessary Ingredients

While eating a pre-shopping snack, why not take a time to plan out a quick menu and base a shopping list of the needed ingredients.

  • It will be much easier to stick to a budget and not overspend if the meals are planned out ahead of time ??

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Look through the pantry and get creative with what is already there. A bag of rice an onion and some tomato paste can be the beginnings of a delicious and nutritious meal. All that would be needed is a bag of beans and suddenly a meal of red beans and rice is easily (and cheaply) ready to be prepared. Even rice and an onion wouldn’t be too much more expensive to buy.

  • To maintain health, resist the urge to eat out at fast food restaurants.
While it can be appealing to get lots of cheap calories at a low upfront cost, the long term cost of this unhealthy habit could result in obesity and high blood pressure in the future, two major health issues that could be very expensive down the road.

So, use these tips, save money on food and stay happy and healthy!

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