May 10, 2015

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I’m a big proponent of the idea that one of the best possible ways you can save money in your day to day life is to cook at home. But, if you’re not careful, you can still go nuts and blow your budget at the grocery store. Or worse, decide that cooking is too much work and go back to a life of take out and restaurants!

For me, sticking to a budget on food comes down to these key things:

  • Plan your meals for the week. Know exactly how much of each ingredient you need to buy before you go to the store, and don’t buy anything that isn’t on your list.
  • Batch cook. It won’t kill you to eat the same meal three, four or even five days in a row. When you buy in bulk, you pay less per pound, and when you batch cook you get a better return on your time. I cook no more than twice a week and get the rest of my nights off!
  • Bring a packed lunch to work. We all know we should do this.
  • Keep the effort to a minimum. This goes along with how batch cooking makes your life easier. I know that I don’t have the attention span or self control to wake up every morning and put together a multi-ingredient lunch for myself. So I try to find meals that can be made ahead of time and grabbed on my way out the door without any extra thought. Otherwise, I’ll lose motivation and start eating at restaurants again just because it was too much effort to pack lunch.

The recipes on Networthy are ones that I use in my real life. Now, I’m no dieter, so I never calorie count these meals. I use oil, heavy cream, dark meat, and carbs galore. And both my husband and I have big appetites that are never ever satisfied by a simple salad. So this isn’t the best index for you if your main priority is eating light. These recipes are for people who want to eat a flavorful meal that will fuel you for hours, and which costs less than $5 per serving.

To see all the recipes I've posted, click here. Or you can start with my first recipe, Bacon and Pea Risotto!

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