Meal prepping already goes a long way in saving you money and simplifying your life. What if you can make it even better and do it even on a tighter budget?
Below are 7 simple ways that will help you do meal prepping on a budget. So, let’s get started.
1. Make A List – Don’t Fell to Impulses
Making a list of the items you need before going grocery shopping will help you immensely. This will help you stick to only what you need and not fell to your impulses and buy unnecessary items.
You can go back one step before making a list and get to know what you have already got in your pantry. Some of the herbs and spices are hardly used and may go unnoticed in your kitchen cabinet, refrigerator or freezer. Also, pay close attention to the expiry dates of these items, and if the expiry date is near try to make meals/recipes that use items before they expire.
2. Cook Less Meat
Meats are one of the costliest items on grocery lists and therefore it would be wise to reduce your meat consumption. Red meat has also been shown to cause different heart conditions. Therefore, do your health and budget a good and reduce your meat intake. It will not only reduce your cholesterol level but will also lighten your grocery bill.
You can start this by introducing one meat-less day a week and then building on it. If you are too fond of meat, consider switching to chicken or buy skin-in or bone-in cuts of meats as they are less expensive. You can also work to add other protein sources to your diet. Pulses and nuts are great non-meat protein sources.
3. Don’t Buy Pre-Cut Fruits and Vegetables
Pre-cut fruits, vegetables, and meats are time-savers, but they do come at a greater price than whole items. In some cases, the difference is significant and the time you actually spend to cut these items isn’t much. Therefore, do your wallet a good and buy whole fruits, vegetables, and meats.
4. Use Seasonal Recopies
Seasonal fruits and vegetables are cheaper and are also considered to have better nutritional value and taste than off-season items. For example, tomatoes are in season from June through November in San Diego. However, January through March is not probably a great time for Caprese salads.
5. Shop Late In the Evening
If you are really a conscious buyer, you probably have noticed this already. It is quite a hack to shop for perishable food items late in the evening. Stores usually need to reduce certain items to a certain quantity before the day ends and this may open doors for some nice deals on bread, vegetable, and meat counters.
6. Buy At Farmer’s Market
If you are lucky to have a farmer’s market nearby, you can get the best out of it. These markets cost less than supermarkets and also provide you with more variety and freshness. On top of all that, you support family farmers and the local economy.
7. Buy in Bulk
Buying in bulk has long been known to cost less and stays true if you are looking to do meal prepping on a budget. Buying in bulk is cheaper because they cost producers and suppliers lesser than selling in smaller quantities because of reduced risk, wastage, and labor costs.
Meal prepping is already a great option for budget-conscious people and exploring more ways to make it even cheaper can make a good difference over time. Or do yourself a favor and try Lean & Tasty’s cheap starting at $49.95 per order.