As a family of seven, I am always looking for ways to cut family household costs. And with five kids of varying ages, eating healthier is also an important goal. But how can you accomplish both? It may be hard to believe, but the path to a healthier diet for the entire family is easier than you think. You can save money and eat more nutritiously with a few changes to your family’s diet by following these 8 ways to reduce your grocery bill:
- Eat just one meal with meat per day. The money you’ll save on meat will add up. I couldn’t believe how much we saved the first month we eliminated meat completely from our diets. However, as a family who loves a good burger and is huge fans of Taco Tuesday, we decided to incorporate meat back into our diet, only in smaller amounts!
- Increase your intake of fruits and vegetables. Even though fresh produce can at times be pricey, vow to shop for in-season produce and sales on fresh items to cut costs. I usually opt to buy tons of fresh fruit for lunches, accompanied by some ready to eat options just in case we run out of fresh fruit before my weekly store run.
- Shop smart at farmers’ markets. I love a good farmer’s market! Buying fresh produce at your local farmers’ market is a great way to save money AND shop locally sourced produce. I enjoy the feeling I get knowing I’m putting money back into the hands of people from my community. Can’t get to a farmers’ market? Try a delivery service like your local CSA or online service.
- Consider cutting your meat portions by 1/3. If you can’t give up meat for two meals a day, then reduce your meat portion size to 2/3 the size you would normally eat and load up on more tasty veggies. Your wallet and your waistline will thank you for it!
- Cut down buying processed foods like noodles, canned soups, and chips. Not only can get really pricey, but they also tend to contain many unhealthy substances and preservatives, including sodium, corn syrup, added sugars, and starches. If possible, try leaving them out of your diet completely and pocket the savings. I can’t say I live by this rule, I love tortilla chips way too much to not have them, but I have greatly reduced the number of processed foods we consume so we aren’t completely depriving ourselves of things we love.
- Increase your fiber intake and save money by buying brown rice by the bag. When packaged in large amounts, brown rice tends to be more economical. Plus, rice is a source of good, healthy, filling fiber.
- Compare costs as you read bread labels, and make sure to read the price per ounce labels on the store shelf too! Find a couple of lower-cost brands of bread that are 100% whole wheat, contain no corn syrup and very little sugar (we buy sugar-free bread now), and then stick with those brands. It will take some time to read labels at first, but eventually, you’ll hang on to your money while avoiding excessive unhealthy ingredients.
- Limit or try to avoid pre-packaged snack foods for big savings. Instead, eat fresh fruits like bananas, apples, pears, or peaches between meals. You can also eat fresh vegetables, like baby carrots, celery with peanut butter, or cauliflower florets. Pre-packaged snack foods cost a pretty penny and most often than not aren’t very healthy.
By following these tips you will not only save money but also vastly improve the health of your entire family. Why not accomplish both goals, beginning today with these 8 ways to reduce your grocery bill and eat a little healthier?