Pregnancy and Parenting Features

Healthy Family Eating on a Budget


Sometimes it’s hard when a family has conflicting priorities. You want to feed your family healthy meals, but organic produce and prime cuts of meat are so much more expensive than the standard versions. A night out at a health-conscious restaurant is less convenient and more expensive than a quick run through the drive-thru for a greasy burger.

Believe it or not, it’s possible to feed your family healthy meals while sticking within your budget. It requires some serious meal planning, but your family’s health (and the health of your pocketbook) is worth it.

Smiling family cooking togetherHere are some pointers to get you on the right track:

  • Proper planning is essential. We can’t stress this enough. Planning your meals lets you make some food ahead of time that can be used for lunches or dinners. It will reduce the number of trips you make to the grocery store and it will reduce the amount of leftover ingredients you have after making a meal.
  • Buy and prepare food in bulk. You can, for example, buy a whole turkey, a ham or a brisket and use it in several meals throughout the week. Alternatively, you can cook all of the meat at once and freeze portions to be easily accessed for another meal down the road.
  • Shop seasonally for fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables out of season can cost twice as much or more than when they’re in season. You may be able to get by with frozen veggies during the winter months, as they’re probably as fresh as those being shipped from outside the country anyways.
  • Support local growers. Local farmers’ markets and even local farmers with roadside stands often offer a variety of higher-quality, fresher ingredients than what you can purchase at the large chain stores.
  • Learn to preserve. Canning and preserving can save you tremendously, especially when it comes to foods that are out of season. Buy tomatoes when they’re in season, for example, and can enough to last until next year.

It’s not always easy to feed your family a nutritious meal and still stay within your grocery budget, but these tips will get you started toward that goal.

So, what do you think? What other money-saving
advice for health eating can you offer?