9 Ways to Eat Well for Less
6 Minute Read: Meal planning, healthy eating, personal finance, eating well on a budget, location independence, digital nomad.
Saving money on food while still eating healthy is a huge area of focus – both for me and my coaching clients.
These days, I rely on local eggs and veggies for the majority of meals, plus a once-weekly infusion of inexpensive but high-quality fish or meat. My main dessert is a few squares of extra-dark chocolate and a square of hard cheese.
Meals are nutrient dense, delicious...and not outrageously expensive.
In my interview this week with brilliant personal finance blog "The Three Year Experiment," I shared 9 other ways to eat well for less. (Find them down below too:).
I also spoke about living a location-independent lifestyle – and how this looked in my 20s, 30s and now 40s, including:
How I created a location-independent career in an unlikely field
Why it can make sense to change careers in your 30s
How I survived a tricky situation in my 20s
9 Ways to Eat Well for Less
Make whole foods your focal point, steering away from anything in boxes or bags. This is cheaper…and healthier!
Shop local and seasonal. In general, local eggs, meat and produce from small farmers are less expensive and more nutrient dense than store-bought organic (not to mention more flavourful). This is doubly so when store-bought organic is out of season and shipped from remote locations.
Invest in a slow-cooker. A slow-cooker transforms tougher, cheaper cuts of meat into tender delights. It’s also great for making a large batch of inexpensive soup or stew, whether meat-based or vegetarian.
Add small inexpensive fish (like sardines) into rotation. Also organic or grass-fed organ meats and “unusual parts” like oxtails and marrow bones. These are true superfoods and unbelievably cheap (plus, a little goes a long way).
Speaking of “superfoods,” the key really is choosing whole-food ingredients and staying away from extras. If I choose to splurge on something like grass-fed collagen powder, I draw from a special “superfood budget” that I intentionally keep very low.
Cook up a few staples to have on hand and embrace leftovers. For me, this means making a batch of one or two dishes each Sunday and incorporating them into lunches and dinners during the week. Current go-to’s include: spaghetti squash, cauliflower “rice,” roasted carrots and beets. I lean towards unfussy, recipe-less dishes. But get as fancy as you’d like!
Pack lunch rather than buying it while out. Crafting a routine is key here: I pack next day’s lunch while preparing dinner.
Always shop with (and stick to) a list. I like to have a rough plan of the week’s dinners too – nothing super-specific, but a general idea of what I’ll be eating each night. This keeps me from making purchases I’ll regret at the end of a full day.
Think about why you want to save money. Maybe for travel? Something else? Eating healthy is a huge priority for me, but it doesn’t have to be super-expensive – and I want to save money for other needs and wants! I track my spending and budget each day using You Need A Budget. This has had a transformative impact on my spending and saving habits.
Honestly, this is just a starter list. I have so many more tips to share! Still, these offer a solid start:).
And if you're curious about my location-independent lifestyle, head over to the full interview here.
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