When I first started Clean Eating, our food shop budget was around £30 a week for my husband and I and our young son at the time. I was so eager to Eat Clean, eat organic, be 100% healthy, but the truth was that SOME convenience foods could feed us for less money. Fresh meat was expensive, organic meat was out of the question. So I did the best I could with the money that I had, patiently waiting for the day I could spend more!
Here are some things that helped me to be able to Eat Clean on a tight budget:
- Plan healthy meals that cost pennies to make like home made stews, soups, omelettes and frittatas and serve them with wholegrain bread.
- Buy smaller portions of meat and add lentils, beans and vegetables to bulk them out. This can turn a meal for 4 into a meal for 12. Trust me, I have done it!
- Go meat free for at least one day a week, preferably two.
- Buy in bulk when you can. In the supermarkets these days and with Costco and other whole food retailers, you are able to get discounts for buying food in bulk. If you have more mouths to feed in your family, bulk buying is a good way to save money on things like grains and beans etc.
- Make the most of deals. When healthy food is on offer, buy it! You can freeze what you wont use and save it for another day.
- Take advantage of what is in season. Generally fresh produce that is in season is cheaper than none seasonal produce.
- Buy toiletries, medicines, cleaning products and other non food items in bulk monthly or 3 – 6 monthly from cheaper non supermarket shops, so that the food budget goes on just food.
- Shop around! I do my main food shop on Ocado, but if I pop into other supermarkets and they have better offers, I buy them there and delete that item from my online shopping list.
Do the best you can. Through the years as money has become less tight, I have been able to add the things to my shopping basket that were important to me. – Trust that money will get better, but know that it really is possible to ditch the freezer food and make nutritious meals for you and your family whatever your budget.
Do you have any Clean Eating Budget Tips? What is your favourite low budget Clean Eating meal?