“I can’t afford to eat healthily.” That’s an excuse we hear and read about pretty much every day of the week in some form or another. And here at Supplement Centre, we simply shake our heads.
Because for us, we know you can eat well on a budget. Whether “well” means portion size or nutritional goodness, it can be done. But there’s no good in us continuing to shake our heads.
If you want gains, bigger portions or just a healthier diet, here are 7 top tips for eating well without getting a loan from Wonga. You probably know where to get cheap whey protein, so now you can get cheap eats!
1. Butcher the price of meat (Vegetarians please skip!)
Simple butchery to start, by turning a rib eye joint into steaks. Cut between each rib to create a number of separate steaks. Freeze each one and defrost as required.
Don’t fancy cutting your own meat when it’s raw? Well still go for big joints. Especially with chicken. If you cook a whole chicken, meat can be had on the first 2 or 3 days and on day 4, you can boil the carcass. Ok, not lovely stuff, but if you put the resulting water through a sieve, you will collect the meat. This can then be used in a soup, and the fluid in a stock.
Simpler still, just pop to the butcher, it’s often cheap.
2. Cook in batches
This is where economies of scale comes into play, which means the more you produce or buy, the cheaper each unit becomes. This is why when you buy a 5kg Anabolic, it’s cheaper per serving than a smaller tub.
In food terms, you can get deals on bigger packs of meat, rice, veg and more. It tends to cost more to cook for one as most supermarkets and shops don’t package their food in single servings, if they do, they often up the price.
So cook huge batches, whack what you don’t need in the freezer, or the fridge for the next few days, and watch as the cost per meal plummets.
3. Carbs should be cheap
Pasta, rice, oats and potatoes can all be bought for very small amounts. Porridge oats in particular are a very cheap source of carbohydrates. Again, look to bulk buy if you can. Most carbs last for ages, and if your spuds start to sprout, then keep reading, we have an answer for that too.
4. Grow your own
You don’t have to turn into Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall but growing veg is fun, will help you burn some calories and what’s better than eating something you haven’t paid for!? Those potato buds can be used to start new spuds off as well.
No room to grow veg? Herbs can be grown in small places such as a windowsill and can really transform a dish.
5. Peasant food is pleasant food
Beans, pulses, rice, spuds; all tasty all cheap. Ratatouille is one of the top “peasant” dishes.; it’s full of nutritious veg, filling and incredibly cheap.
Want some meat? Then try offal. Lamb, Beef or Ox liver is really cheap, much cheaper than other meats. It is also very low in fat, with around 6-9g of fat in 100g. Add in a shed load of iron and you are really packing in the good stuff.
6. Shop smart
Sunday afternoon in most supermarkets: grannies pushing you to get that last £1 chicken, people fighting over 9p loaves of bread. But, if you want to eat cheap, it’s the way to do it.
The reduced section is your friend. If you shop on those crazy Sundays or late in the evening, you will find reduced price deals. That freezer is getting more jam packed by the second!
7. Plan your meals
This is, for most of you, a no brainer. Plan every meal in a week and save big. Why? Because you can buy large packs of ingredients that cover a number of meals and minimise any waste. You also won’t buy anything unnecessarily.
Cook enough so your dinner one night is your lunch the next day, unless you are going for more smaller meals, in which case, more planning is needed!
And one more thing if you’re looking for gains…
Peanut butter is your go to option. It can be found pretty cheap if you look hard enough. It’s high in protein and full of good fats.