Due to the busy and hectic schedule, most of us rely on eating out or takeaways, and rarely cook at home. It is convenient as you can have quick meals, and do not have to spend time in shopping and cooking. However, you also must be aware that this is not healthy in the long run. You need to have healthy food in order to maintain proper health. There are several meal options that you can consider, if you wish to have healthy food in limited expenses. With proper meal planning, you can have healthy meals at home, without spending a lot of money.
Budget Meal Planning
- Firstly, note that you should plan and actually chalk out meal plans, so that you have a fair idea about the things you need to buy and the amount you need to spend.
- Same amount of planning is required when designing healthy meals for one or for the entire family. Firstly check out the food and products that you have in your pantry, use them and only then shop for the new ones.
- While shopping, note that you should avoid processed foods and rather think of getting fresh or frozen goods. It is also wise to cut down on all the junk foods like chips, crisps, wedges, soda, etc., to save money and calories.
- Secondly, remember to buy in bulk as it helps in saving a great deal of money. You should invest in food products that can be used in various dishes like eggs, beans, chicken, etc., more than investing in sweets and dessert ingredients.
- Lastly, although it is wise to make food in proper quantities, if made in large quantity, do not throw it away. Look for leftover recipes and make delicious dishes on the next day.
Now, take a look at the following food ideas for two or the entire family. The seven ideas on each course will help in planning your weekly inexpensive healthy meals.
- Eggy bread (French toast)
- Potato cakes
- Omelet, boiled/poached eggs
- Breakfast sandwiches
- Cereal with fruits
- Tortilla wraps
- Vegetable/chiken pasta
- Chicken/ham sandwich/salads
- Vegetable stir fry
- Mashed potato (with/without gravy)
- Crockpot chili/pork roast
- Leftover Dishes
- Casserole with chicken/ham/vegetables
- Bread and butter pudding
- Finger sandwiches
- Cut veggies with homemade dip
- Crackers and cheese
- Mini pizzas
- Homemade mini burgers
- Jelly with fruit
- Yogurt with berries
- Fruit salad
- Yogurt parfait
- Homemade sugar cookies
- Homemade cake
With these ideas, you will find that eating healthy on a budget can be easy, if planned properly. You should remember to have filling breakfast and meals so as to prevent hunger pangs and eating junk food in between meals. If you have kids, you can involve them in planning meals. This will also help in making them understand the importance of having healthy foods and budgeting.
Lastly, as one of the most useful tips, remember to plan on weekends and shop on days when you can get discounts, use coupons, and save some more money. Good luck!