When I first made the change to eating well, the amount of money I spent on our shopping actually dropped. Not what you were expecting I’m sure. One of the most common questions I get asked by my clients is how to eat well on a budget.
This is something that I know many people struggle with, so I want to share with you my top tips to make it easier for you to prioritize your health and wellbeing every time you go food shopping.
By planning your meals by what’s in season, this is going to ensure you are buying the cheapest fruit and vegetables at the highest quality. Foods that are out of season are often imported, and of a higher price. For a seasonal guide to what’s current in your state, check out this guide here.
Prepare and Plan.
The simplest tip, but quite often the hardest to implement. Twice a week take the time to sit down and plan out your meals for the week ahead (I recommend twice a week so you can get fresh fruit and vegetables!). Write a shopping list and stick to it.
Buy in Bulk.
We are fortunate in Australia to have a lot of bulk food stores. They are great for cupboard items, and often have special’s throughout the month, or a discount if you take your own jars or Tupperware.
Alternatively do some research to see if there’s a food co-op locally. A lot of families go in together and take turns going to the farmers markets and share of the cost of bulk buys.
I’ve heard some families get enough fruit and vegetables for a week for only $40 – amazing. You can also the same with meat, if you have a big enough freezer.
Don’t Waste Anything:
Did you know Australians throw away 20% of the food they buy each year? Shocking isn’t it. Instead of wasting things that you have bought, make veggie stir fry’s with your leftovers, roast veggies, or a soup depending on what you have left and freeze it for a meal.
Focus on the staples:
Meals don’t have to be fancy, despite the Masterchef vibe that is going around! Focus on complex carbohydrates (Brown Rice, Quinoa and the like – remember to buy in bulk!), veggies, and quality meat. I often miss our ingredients in my recipes, if its not something I use often, to money, and it still tastes amazing.
Use your freezer effectively:
I like to stock my freezer with berries and other seasonally produce that I love, as this stops me from spending a fortune on it when it's out of season, so I always have my favourites on hand.
I'd love to know what your favourite tips are for eating well? Let me know in the comments below.