(NAPSI)—Your family can eat better and spend less if you check out these smart ideas.
• Plan a weekly menu. It’s the game plan for food budgeting. For ideas on what to make, start with what you have on hand or use an app, such as Food on the Table (free, iOS, Android), which can help you plan meals based on what’s on sale at nearby supermarkets.
• Don’t buy precut fruits and vegetables. They cost more because the work has been done for you. Instead, buy whole produce and slice and dice it yourself. More Tips: Buy onions, apples, oranges and potatoes by the bag rather than individually. Salad Greens: Compared to prepackaged lettuce blends, whole heads of lettuce are a better buy. Go for darker greens, such as romaine and red leaf, for the most nutrients. Stock up on low-priced seasonal berries too and stockpile your own bag veggies for the freezer. You’ll be so glad you have those homemade bags of frozen blueberries when the berry season is over.
• Look for “Manager’s Special” meats. They’re a great buy because they’re about to expire. The trick is to prepare or freeze them immediately. Also, you can buy a whole chicken and debone it yourself (search YouTube for how-to’s) instead of buying pricey packages of chicken breasts or parts. Make your own chicken nuggets and freeze them. For meaty casseroles such as lasagna, double or triple the recipe (for the freezer) but don’t double or triple the amount of meat. You won’t miss it.
• Stick to skim or nonfat milk. It’s heart healthy and generally half the cost of soy milk.
• Experiment with store brands. Stock your pantry with your favorite store-brand foods; they’re often less expensive than on-sale name brands. If you’re a new mom who uses infant formula, buy Store Brand Formula. Store Brand Formula such as Walmart’s Parent’s Choice and Sam’s Club’s Simply Right Formulas offer the same complete nutrition as name-brand formulas yet cost up to 50 percent less, which can add up to a savings of hundreds of dollars a year.
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