Everyone wants to know how to save money on real food — it’s the most common question I get. In fact, one of the biggest objections I hear about eating real food (natural and organic food, traditionally prepared), is that it&...
Everyone wants to know how to save money on real food — it’s the most common question I get. In fact, one of the biggest objections I hear about eating real food (natural and organic food, traditionally prepared), is that it’s too expensive.
But the truth is, cooking real food really isn’t expensive when you know how to do it. There are so many ways to save!
Here are my top 10 ways to save money on real food. Not all of these tips will work for everyone, but hopefully you will find some things that will be of value to you.
Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Real Food
1. Cook in Big Batches
When you cook dinner, make enough for 2 or even 4 meals. When you make bread, make 4 or 5 loaves instead of just one.
Why? Because it always saves time (which saves money — time is money) to do things in batches. And again, you’re buying in bulk which will save you money.
You can freeze the leftovers and pull them out a week or a month or so later. Nobody will be the wiser! That way they won’t get sick of it eating it night after night.
The Holistic Squid meal plans we use (see #9 below) actually have double-batches built into them so we always have leftovers, which is what we eat for lunch.
2. Start a Vegetable Garden and/or Raise Livestock
You can grow a lot of vegetables in most backyards. I grow everything from lettuce to herbs to potatoes to lemons, tomatoes and zucchini, celery and strawberries.
Don’t have a backyard? Plant in your front yard. (I’m in the process of ripping out my front yard — stay tuned for the blog post.)
Backyard chickens lay eggs that you can eat — and people say they are a lot of fun. (I can’t have any in LA — my yard is just a tad too small.) If you have room, goats, sheep and cows will provide milk which you can use to make yogurt, butter and cheese.
3. Shop with Amazon Prime
I’ve been an Amazon Prime member for years and I love it.
For $79 per year, you get unlimited FREE two-day shipping. This means Amazon will ship things directly to your door. Also, Amazon Prime items are only $3.99 for overnight shipping. So for those times when you really need something right away and don’t have time to get to the store, Amazon’s got you covered.
$79 is nothing when you think about it. Because it would cost WAY more if you actually had to drive to the store every time you bought something. Your time is worth money.
OK, brace yourself for the Time is Money lecture.
Most of us women (heck, most people, but particularly women) are guilty of not putting a high enough value on our time. And guess what? Shopping takes time. Driving to the store, wandering around the store (especially if you’ve got 3 kids in tow,) schlepping stuff home. All that time wasted — time you can’t be doing something else.
What else would you do? Oh, I don’t know… maybe get a part-time job and make some extra money. Start an Etsy store. Who knows? The point is, it’s non-productive time.
If you really ENJOY shopping, that’s fine. There are some stores I still enjoy going to and browsing around. Like REI, and even Whole Foods. I still go there. And I love going to the farmer’s market.
But stop shopping for stuff like toilet paper that you can have delivered directly to your door. I know it seems weird at first, getting giant boxes of paper towels in the mail. But you will quickly get used to it. And you can use the cardboard boxes to start a Lasagna Garden!
In addition to the free shipping, you get tons of free streaming movies and TV shows plus a huge Kindle lending library — meaning if you are a Prime member, you can borrow Kindle books for free!
Trust me, Amazon Prime will change your life! Click here to learn more about Amazon Prime.
4. Shop with Amazon Subscribe & Save
I’ve been a Prime member for years, but I only recently discovered the awesomeness of Amazon Subscribe & Save. (Thanks to m