Food, and indeed life, are expensive. The price of an average weekly shop in 2017 is considerably higher than it was in 2007. This is because of growing inflation, the rising costs of import and export and generally the growing costs of living. Unfortunately, healthy food always seems to be hit hardest when prices rise. Junk food stays cheap, but healthy ingredients and meals have their prices hiked. This can make it hard for us to eat well.
However, it’s important that you do. A healthy and balanced diet helps to keep you fit and healthy can help you to live longer and prevent certain diseases, boosts your immunity, helps you to sleep and looks after your skin, hair and nails. Eating well is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways you can save money on your weekly food shop. Here’s a look at some of the best.
Cook from Scratch
Cooking from scratch is fun, it allows you to know exactly what you are putting into your body, it means you avoid all of the preservatives that are in ready-made meals, and it can save you a fortune. As long as you shop carefully, avoiding branded products and only getting what you need, buying individual ingredients is much cheaper.
If you’re not a great cook, ordering in a box of ingredients can be a great way of trying new things and shaking up your routine. It’s also a good idea if you want to make one special meal as you get sent exactly what you need and don’t have to buy whole bottles of herbs and spices which may end up spending their lives sat in the back of your cupboard. This shrimp rolls with roasted sweet potatoes Blue Apron recipe is an example of the kind of things you could eat, relatively cheaply by ordering a Blue Apron ingredient box.
Freezing is one of the best ways to reduce waste and save money. Cook in large portions and freeze any extras for another day. Most food freezes well, but double check online if you’ve got any worries.
Try Local Markets
Shopping at supermarkets and large stores can be more expensive for some things. Try local fruit and veg markets and butchers to see if they are cheaper. Try to go early in the morning to get the best deals.
Most supermarkets have a reduced section, where they sell food that has had its price marked down. This is sometimes because it’s going out of date that day or because the packaging has been damaged. They wouldn’t be allowed to sell food that wasn’t safe, so don’t worry about quality. Go home and put it straight in your freezer to extend its shelf life.
One of the most common causes of overspending on food is not having a plan. We walk around the shops picking up whatever we fancy. Only to get home and realize we’ll need to go back to buy things to complete meals. To avoid this, write a plan for the week and a shopping list to take to the store with you.
Eating well and buying nice food doesn’t have to cost the earth, you just need to be organized and prepared to try new things.