Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Eating clean on a budget

Eating clean on a budget

A friend messaged me and asked me to do a blog on eating clean on a budget… so here ya go!

“We are on a budget. I love all your pictures but how can you do it being broke? I mean you can get a burger for a dollar but a salad for six…. Please blog about food on a budget”

Let me 1st tell you, I was a single mom on a very tight budget. If I could do it, you can do it. Actually, still to this day (even though we have another income in the house) I am still a penny pincher and watch our money very closely at the grocery store. I spend about $40 a week on groceries for my house of 3 (2 adults and 1 child). I also spend $16 a week on my fruits and veggies through a co-op (www.bountifulbaskets.org).

Here are 6 tips to saving at the grocery store:

1.       Check out Bountiful Baskets
-          Seriously, this alone will save you so much money (and time). Yes, you never know what you are going to get in your basket each week but it also makes eating kind of fun. You are able to try new things all while saving money.
-          Here is everything I received in one of my baskets: bag of grapes, 6 peaches, 8 bananas, 1 box of blue berries, 1 box of strawberries, 3 heads of broccoli, 1 big yellow onion, 2 cantaloupes, 1 honey dew melon, 2 egg plants, 1 stalk of lettuce and 1 stalk of kale.  (Go price that out at a grocery store and let me know if you can buy all that under $16).

2.       Find a grocery store that you can use that either offers GREAT deals or takes coupons. I am in love with Aldi and have found that I have been saving SO much more money shopping there then if I went to a grocery store that accepted coupons. Wal-Mart is also another place that is good to shop at, however I do not like the headache of going there so I only go if I can’t find something at Aldi. Yes, I love Aldi BUT they do not always have everything I am looking for.

3.       Make a list! Never ever ever go to the grocery store without a list. That is what will get you in trouble… you start seeing stuff that wouldn’t be on your list (if you would have made one) and you put it in your cart. A list helps save you money!

4.       Shop on the outside aisle at the grocery store. This will not only save you money but it will also help you lose weight. The less processed crap you buy the less processed crap you eat. Buy fresh foods (never frozen or already pre-packaged) from the outside aisles like fresh meats, dairy, fruits and veggies. The only thing I ever buy from the inside aisles is our seasonings, black beans, brown rice, and 1 special thing for Caleb each week (I let him pick one food item a week that I consider “crap” and then the rest of the week he has to eat what we eat or he doesn’t eat. He usually picks either a breakfast food or a snack for the ride home from school).

5.       You do not have to always buy the name brand. I buy everything I can off brand, unless I am going to a get together and then I will buy the name brand because sometimes it just taste better (ranch and mac and cheese being the 2 things I am most picky about. But it’s okay because I never eat those things any more). Seriously though, start looking for off brand things instead of name brand. This alone will help you save so much money. Trust me, you will never know the difference on about 98% of the products.

6.       Stop eating out! Cook at home and pack your meals for work. The way Casey and I do it, I cook our dinner (it usually has 4 servings) and I dish out 2 servings and pack the other 2 up for our lunches the next day. It may get boring doing it that way, but hey we are saving money and losing weight. If you do not like eating leftovers, the only thing I can tell ya is STOP BEING PICKY! My parent’s motto for use when we were growing up was “You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit”. We were a house of 9 and so leftovers were a big thing in our house.

I am sure that there are MANY more tips out there, if you have some please feel free to share them with me!

Happy shopping!!!

Jordan A. Lassiter
Appalachia South
Land Clerk – Administrative Assistant
XTO ENERGY a subsidiary of ExxonMobil

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