When it comes to meal prep, a little bit of planning can make a big difference toward keeping you from eating out or hitting the expensive vending machines.
Here are a few things to consider when meal planning on a budget that can help move the process along and make it easier.
Inventory what you already have
Check your pantry and refrigerator to see what you already have on hand before grocery shopping. This prevents items from having to be thrown out and keeps you from overbuying.
Buy in-season veggies and fruit
Try your local farmer’s market for the freshest and most seasonal food items. Prices are usually lower because you’re eliminating the middleman. Generic grocery items are often just as good as the big name brands you pay more for, so make sure you shop wisely.
Don’t forget about snacks
Don’t forget to plan for snacks in your meal prep experience. Keeping healthy snacks in your desk drawer keeps you from reaching for change for the pricey vending machine and indulging in food that may sabotage your goals.
Buying in bulk
Buying in bulk is also a good option for planning meals ahead of time while sticking to a budget by purchasing food items on sale or in bulk. Divide it and use it as needed. You can also tailor your meal prepping to use bulk items or use up extra ingredients.
You’ll want to plan your budget and your meal prepping to include an occasional treat once in awhile, but don’t let splurging or impulse eating upset your entire diet and budget plan.