How To Eat For Cheap And Save Some Cash

5 min read

eat for cheap

When you are strapped for cash, budgeting your money becomes vital. This is especially true when it comes to groceries and food. Since we need foods to literally survive, it’s an expense we can’t avoid. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t cut down on spending. So how do you eat for cheap and save some money?

If you want to eat for cheap you simply have to be strategic and plan ahead. It’s very easy to overspend when it comes to groceries. By filling up your cart with lots of snacks and boxed meals, it can add up to a lot of money. Maybe not at the counter, but maybe that’s the hospital when you have to deal with medical expenses.

So instead of spending a fortune on groceries and food, let’s figure out how you can eat for cheap and save some cash for other important things.

1. Have a grocery budget

Speaking of budgets, having a grocery budget is a must if you want to eat for cheap and start saving some money on your groceries and food.

It is unsettling how easy it is to overspend on food. Companies and businesses that sell packaged Foods design their packaging to be as attractive and alluring as possible.

When you look at that boxed pizza, it was specifically designed to be as delicious looking as possible. So instead of just walking through the store and grabbing as much random stuff as your heart desires, having a grocery will force you to stay within your limits.

It’s one thing to write up a grocery budget, but it’s another to actually follow it. So make sure that if you make a budget, you follow it to the tee!

2. Plan your meals

The first if you need to take his to start planning ahead when it comes to your meals. This will definitely save you in the long run because you are not frantically trying to figure out what to eat.

Write down 3 breakfast, lunch, and dinner meal ideas in advance. This gives you a good selection of what to eat on a particular day or time.

By taking away confusion and reducing decision fatigue, you make it much easier on yourself to decide what to eat. Besides, you don’t want to be in the grocery store and not know wants to get. What ends up happening is you’ll start grabbing things you really don’t need, and blow right past your grocery budget.

3. Don’t buy unhealthy food

It’s very tempting to just end up buying chips, drinks, and boxed meals to eat for cheap and save money. Snacks and high sodium foods are packed with calories but offer very little nutritional value.

Sure, you might be saving a few dollars now, but can you imagine having to go to the hospital because of your dangerously High sodium and cholesterol levels?

Hospital bills are very expensive. It doesn’t matter how good your health insurance is, all those deductibles and medicine will add up. You don’t wants to just pack your body with junk just to save some money.

They are much safer ways to save money whilst also getting adequate nutrition from your food.

4. Don’t eat out as much

No matter what the stats might tell you, cooking and eating at home is much cheaper than eating out.

When you go to a restaurant, that burger you eat has to pay for the staff, the utility bills, the building rent, and the marketing that got you in there. To do that, they need to make as much profit from you as possible.

Make it a point to eat for cheap at home as much as possible. Costs 100x less than eating out.

5. Never shop hungry

have you ever been to a buffet? If so, then you probably I’ve tried to go as hungry as possible to the buffet so you can eat as much as possible. You know what typically happens? You never eat as much as you thought you would.

The same applies to groceries. When you are filling up that cart while you are hungry, you tell yourself that you will be able to eat all this food. Chances are, you probably aren’t.

When you are hungry, you start craving foods and much larger quantities. You start grabbing snack items and things you really don’t need, just because everything sounds good in the moment.

So to make sure that you stick to your budget and don’t overspend, always go on a full stomach. Being hungry is distracting and will only lead to you over spending.

6. Buy generic brands

If you are in the in the United States, food manufacturers are required to follow standards and provide safe foods. There is no way that a food manufacturer will sell you foods that are dangerous to you.

Name brand Foods are sometimes identical to the generic alternative. The only difference would be the name. When you pay for name-brand Foods, you are paying for marketing that made you by that name brand of the first place.

You almost never see generic brands on TV. This is because marketing on television is very expensive, and by not marketing their brands as often, they end up costing less. Name brands on the other hand pay billions of dollars just for you to have the impression that they are of higher quality.

A simple test is just to holds the name brand next to the generic brand And look at the ingredients. If they are identical, then go ahead and buy the generic brand instead. You will end up saving tons of money doing this.

7. Take advantage of sales

If your local grocery store is having a sale on items that you frequent, like toiletries, then it’s probably smart to stock up on those items.

Sales are often tactics used by stores to lure you into the store and have you buy things you really didn’t need to. But, my dear reader, you are smarter than this.

Instead, you are going to take full advantage of the sale and buy only things that you actually need. Nothing more, nothing less. This Way, You Are actually saving money and not overspending on anything. Genius, right?! 🙂

8. Buy in bulk

buying some food items in bulk can actually save you lots of money. By shopping at bulk stores like Costco and Sam’s Club, you can save quite a lot of money.

Grain such as rice and oats are things that don’t go bad quickly, and can be eaten over a longer period of time. Because of this, it’s probably smart to buy those in bulk and store them.

The same can’t be said for perishables like milk. You can to buy 20 gallons of milk and expected to last a while. It’ll go bad, and end up just being a waste. So figure out what your food staples are and buying bulk when you can for a much lower price.

9. Learn to be creative

If you want to eat for cheap, you should learn how to be creative and plan meals around what ingredients you already have on hand. I myself still struggle with this, but with effort, you can make delicious meals from what you probably already have in your fridge and pantry.

Just because you’re out of chicken doesn’t mean you can’t make some kind of stew. They are awesome communities online such as Pinterest where you can get awesome recipes just by using what you already have.

By maximizing what you have one hand, we can end up cutting the grocery bill quite a bit. You can always scrounge around cupboards to find something that you can put together to make a meal.

10. Don’t waste food

If you throw away leftovers, you are literally throwing away money. Take a $1 bill and rip it to shreds, then Chuck it in the bin. Can you do it? If not, then throwing away food is the exact same thing.

If you have some extra chicken from the previous night, you can always dye sit up put some potatoes, onions, and throw it in the Crock-Pot with some broth. Boom, you have yourself a meal.

Just because they are leftovers doesn’t mean they can’t be eaten. As long as you have a refrigerator, just plop it in there covered, and either reheated the next day or make a whole new meal out of it.

Final thoughts

Saving money on groceries it’s not as hard as you think. You don’t have to spend a fortune on food. To highlight the items I have listed above:

  1. Have a grocery budget – This makes sure you don’t overspend
  2. Plan your meals – Not having a plan can have you running to the grocery store to buy more food
  3. Don’t buy unhealthy food – It might seem like a cheap way out, but it will cost you much more in the long run
  4. Don’t eat out as much – Eating out is expensive! Save it for special occasions at the most
  5. Never shop hungry – We tend to overspend on food because hunger clouds your judgment
  6. Buy generic brands – Check the ingredients when compared to Name Brand alternatives. You might be surprised how identical they might be
  7. Take advantage of sales – If there is a sale on your frequently purchased items, time to stock up
  8. Buy in bulk – this is very good way to save money on groceries
  9. Learn to be creative – Learn to make a meal out of what you have, and save yourself a lot of money
  10. Don’t waste food – Throwing away food is literally money in the trash. Learn to eat leftovers or make new meals out of them.

Just follow these 10 steps to eat for cheap and you will be golden. Let me know which one is your favorite in the comments below 🙂

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