Summer, New Habits: Eating Well on a Budget

You may have watched the BBC's programme Eat Well for Less, where each week a family spend a large amount of money on their weekly food shop. The common reasons for the expense usually boils down to choosing expensive brands, opting for convenience foods and pre-prepared vegetable items, food wastage, being dazzled by offers and a reluctance to cook. If this sounds a bit familiar then you may want to take BBC website’s ‘What type of shopper are you?’ quiz to help find out what is making your food bill so high and it also has great tips. 

A quick and easy way to save some money is to stop buying coffee and lunches and start making your own. You could save a large amount of money over a year and possibly more if you’re buying other items on the go. 

Here are some great tips to help cut your food shop bill, eat better and learn the tricks of the supermarket trade.

  • Plan your meals for the week and use a shopping list or shop online which makes it easier to keep to a budget.
  • Avoid impulse buys at the till
  • Understand date labels to avoid food wastage. 
  • Try off brand versions of food you like to see if you like them. Some brands you may not be able to tell the difference between.
  • Explore different stores to see which one is the cheapest but still has good quality food.
  • Never throw away any left overs, use it to create new meals or save it for breakfast the next day! Here are some great leftovers recipes
  • If you do not like cooking, cook in bulk and fill your freezer with home-cooked ready meals, so that your time is freed up for other days.
  • Use vegetables and beans to bulk up meals like spaghetti bolognese, curry, stews and lasagne so you can use less meat. 
  • Go for cheaper frozen options for fish, vegetables, and fruit, especially when they’re out of season when the fresh options become more expensive.
  • Push your own trolley and never shop hungry!

For more delicious budget recipe ideas, download this PDF of ‘Eat Well on $4 a day’ created by Leanne Brown, which was made as a project for her Food Studies Masters Degree in America. It originated from finding a way for people to eat well on very small budgets, particularly those on Food Stamps benefits. She made the PDF available for free so that it could reach more people in need.

There are some fantastic recipes in there that cover breakfast to dinner and snacks. It uses the American measurements of cups rather than grams. If you don’t have a cup measurement then you can use this converter, it’s mainly with the baking recipes that you’ll have to more careful.

Hope this has given you a lot of good ideas to eat healthy on a budget. We’d love to hear from you if you have any favourite recipes you’d like to share.

Happy eating!

Eating healthily does not just affect your physical health it also supports positive mental wellbeing too. Here are 3 Tips to Start Making Healthy Eating Choices.

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