As a single parent money is tight about 99.9% of the time, ok let’s face it, it’s more like 100%. While eating healthy may be important to you, you may think you simply cannot afford it. Don’t worry, most of us feel that way from time to time. Money is scarce and junk food is cheaper. But there are some tricks to make eating healthy affordable, even on a single parent budget.
Next time you are at the grocery store try stopping by the deli. Believe it or not, a half pound of cheddar freshly sliced at the deli will often run a dollar a pound cheaper than the prepackaged slices at the back of the store. Bread is often cheaper here too.
If you are planning on using the fruit or vegetables right away look around for the “must sell” bins. The fruit has usually been discounted and you don’t have to wait around for it to ripen. This is a great way to save a little extra money, as long as you plan on using it right away.
Instead of going to the grocery store tonight try finding your local farmer’s market. They are all over, especially during the summer. Their prices are usually much more reasonable because it is grown locally. You don’t have to worry about transportation costs or other fees this way so the cost of the food goes significantly down.
Plan meals by what is in season. Strawberries can be as low as $2 during the summer, but come January you’ll easily pay $5 or more, that is, if you can find them. So you may want to put off that strawberry salad and substitute for something that is more in season. Look online to see what is in season in your area. This alone can save you a bundle!
Freeze what you won’t be using right away. Buying fresh food doesn’t do you any good if you don’t use it before it goes bad. Your money is valuable so don’t let it go to waste. If you aren’t going to use it fast enough, freeze it. Fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses, and even bread can be frozen and thawed later when you are ready to use it.